In contemporary dynamic workplace we can recognize a big change in thework process also shifting the workers’ (and also managers’) position andattitude towards work itself.
The previous social system was recognized by onetypical moment in the work organizations where worker vs. manager positionswere clearly defined and structured, thus the worker had the role of simpleadministrating the previously given tasks, without having the necessity to beincluded in other parts of the work process and decision making. With changingthe companies’ core structure, communicational and electronic systemdevelopment and globalization, Macedonian companies felt these changes alteringthe managing process and the work itself. Nowadays, the worker is confrontedwith many challenges, essential for successfully completing the job. From apassive task performer he is transferred into proactive problem solver who mustadapt and coordinate with other team members, must innovate and create changes.This can’t be done without active self-management and high level of motivation.
Motivating the workers with a bonus slowly starts to get anotherdimension, in which the worker starts to feel controlled over by the companyfor the sake of the bonus he gets. On its own merits, we can assume that theworker would not give his maximum effort or use his best potential, but he willwork optimally, only till he meets the employers’ basic requests. On the otherside, constant fear of sentence, increasing the pressure on daily basis andenlarging the work demands, mostly have inhibitory and destructive effect inworkers’ productivity and ability for innovation, also in workers corepersonality. Logically, we can put the following question: What could bring theemployee to give his maximum effort (and bend) while working, in era whenmaterial rewards and bonuses or punishment and penalties do not work positivelyto his engagement? How can we develop employees passion and desire to dosomething more than the tasks given on daily basis?Persons’ intrinsic motivation is a requisite for someone doing the taskfor the sake of the pleasure of working itself. For intrinsic motivatedworkers, work itself becomes motivator, inspiration that challenges them togive their maximum effort in completing the task, using their best personalqualities. Despite working conditions and other environmental factors thatinfluence the working process, employees are guided by their own emotions andfeelings, which are significantly related to elevating (or in some casesdestroying) their dedication and vigourness towards work.
Employees’ personal feelings are a core condition for his work engagementand intrinsic motivation, bringing him to be intrinsically aroused incompleting the job. Feelings of personal importance, also work importance, aswell as feeling of progress while working are considered instigators that canbring maximum engagement as well as high level of work satisfaction. Themanagement team creates strategies that are essential in creating condition forthe employee to feel like he can choose his own ways of completing the tasksand by that he is confident in his own abilities and competences. High level ofwork engagement can be seen in the way employee refers to his job, hisvigourness, dedication and absorption from the work itself.
But prime conditionfor high work engagement is the high level of work engagement, which is themain subject of research in this study. Defining main theoretical viewsToward designing this research we used several terms that would bedefined in operation level in this section. Various authors define these termsand ideas in different ways.
Intrinsic motivation as part of motivation in general can be defined as motivation of employee in completing the task for the pleasure of working itself. According to Alan Carr in her book positive Psychology, intrinsically motivated employee, compared to the extrinsically rewarded employee, shows greater interest, excitement and self-confidence in completing the task1. They also show high performance, dedication, commitment and creativity at work. In a study made among workers to address pay for individual performance (PFIP) researches argue that it may undermine intrinsic interest, thus having little or no positive net to performance. They found that PFIP was associated with higher perceived autonomy and higher perceived competence, which, in turn, were associated with more intrinsic interest2. Work engagement. Arnold Bakker and associates in their continuous research in the field of work engagement define the term in psychological manner stating that it’s a positively fulfilling mental state featuring with vigor, dedication, and absorption3.
Engagement refers to more than a specific state in the moment, but it is more long-lasting, permanent and strong affective-cognitive state that it’s not solely focused on a specific object, event or a task. These authors it their attempt in developing a metric scale for work engagement define its’ three core elements: vigor – includes high levels of energy, perseverance, resistance and desire to give extra effort in the task; dedication- refers to high level of involvement and experiencing feelings of importance, enthusiasm, inspiration, elation and challenge while working on given task; absorption – can be defined as maximum concentration while doing the task and taking over with work, thus the employee loses track of time in most occasions. Feeling of personal importance – the employee possesses personal feeling that has the opportunity to complete a significant, special task that stands up its value from the ordinary work activity scheme. In the work of Kenneth Thomas, Intrinsic motivation at work, the author refers to this feeling presenting the worker who consider himself meaningful while completing a task that is worth his time and energy spent, giving him a strong feeling of advisability4. Sense of personal choice- includes the freedom of choosing the way of completing the task. It is closely related to the term of autonomy, reflected in the work of Ryan and Deci in developing their theory of self-determination. According to these authors, autonomy is of central import for personality functioning and wellness, thus supporting autonomy is beneficial for all aspects of human functioning, enhancing human potential reflected in behavioral, relational, and experiential outcomes5. Having a sense of personal choice, employee feels free to use his best judgments and competencies for choosing work tasks that are highly meaningful for him and completing them in his best abilities.
The employee feels like he owns the work he performs, approaching the task, strongly believes in his choices and has strong feeling of personal responsibility for work results6. · Personal competence- refers to theknowledge as well as personal judgment that own work performance is good,optimal for the given task. Employee feels like his task performance satisfiesor Exceeds personal standards, thus the task is well completed and with highquality.
According to Deci and Ryan, having a sense of personal competencemakes the employee to feel certain dose of satisfaction, but alsoresponsibility for outstanding results, but also for the way he handles theactivities while completing the task7.Otherfindings claim that pay for individual performance has positive effect onworkers’ perceived sense of competence, as stated previously8. · Personal development – expresses thesense of encouragement felt when the employee values that his effort ismeaningful and thoroughly accomplishes the given task. He feels that the workis well set and moves into proper direction. Describing the sense of personaldevelopment, Kenneth Thomas refers to an employee who recognizes true signs forhis work well done, thus giving him increased feeling of self confidence andsense of knowledge that he made good choices and will continue to make goodchoices in the future9.
Defining the research problem Regarding the present economic and political state in our country, thevast amount of people we meet every day will say that work only for the salarythey take at the end of the month. If we could ask the employees what is thekey element that is missing in their jobs, so they can feel happy when leavingto work in the morning, we would getter answers referring to factors thatreflect their personal well being and intrinsic emotional state, factors thatotherwise will initiate their internal feeling of meaningfulness, competence,satisfaction and enthusiasm. Learning the lesson from the global businesssociety, our management teams are trying to reward their workers by givingvarious perquisites and bonuses, thus embodying their motivation. Theseexternal motivators are being considered as sub efficient on a global level,thus controlling and destroying persons’ innovativeness and creativity10.Global market companies are oriented towards buildingstrategies for most adequate approach to employees’ motivation in gaining theirmaximum level of work engagement. Unluckily,in most of domestic companies we could not find well developed strategies thatembody and nurture workers’ intrinsic motivation.
Mangers are faced withemployees’ lack of engagement and productivity at work due to bad management andmotivational strategies. Furthermore, they embrace the mostly adoptedmotivational strategy – treat, penalties and other forms of punishing theiremployees, which has a counter effect by itself, destroying the intrinsicmotivation and desire for maximum engagement11.Thus, the problem that we tend to address with thisresearch is reflected in the following question: Does employees’ intrinsic motivation hasdirect impact on their work engagement?The scientific field where this problem is situated ishuman resource management, underlining that human resources are the key movingpart for the companies’ success and productivity.
Managing human resources incondition where any worker can estimate his own progress has a sense ofpersonal choice and growth, leads directly to increasing worker’ engagement andperformance.Direct subject of interest in this study is toshow the influence that intrinsic motivation has on employees work engagement. 3. Researchgoals and expected results.
We can define two main goals stated inthis study:· Scientific goal-refers to gaining new or additional knowledge in the research area where ourproblem is located. The research is aimed to fully understand and deepen the theoreticalknowledge in the field of intrinsic motivation and its influence on workengagement. We expect our research findings to be congruent with other researchfinding in this area, taken on a global level.· Practical goal – implying to demonstration of research findings to workorganizations and companies, thus can be used in elevating the engagement levelamong their employees. Furthermore, the qualitative analysis can implypractical recommendations towards promotion of different ways and condition forelevating workers intrinsic motivation, leading to increasing their workengagement.What we mainly expect to find with this study is thecorrelation between intrinsic motivation and work engagement. Proving theexistence of a strong correlation we expect to define the way and level ofinfluence intrinsic motivation has on work engagement.
By including qualitativeresearch methods, we are aiming to reveal other factors that influence onincreasing the work engagement and also intrinsic motivation. With this studywe aim to address the answers of the following questions:- Doespositive correlation between intrinsic motivation andwork engagement exist?- On what levelintrinsic motivation influences employees’ vigourness, dedication andabsorption?- Does workengagement increase when the employees sense of importance increase? – Does workengagement increases increase when employees sense of personal choice increase?- Does workengagement increases increase when employees sense of personal competence increase?- Does workengagement increases increase when employees sense of personal growth increase?- Which otherexternal and internal factors influence intrinsic motivation? What is lacingfor employees to feel intrinsically motivated at work?- Which factors influencevigourness, dedication and absorption? What is lacing for employees to be fullyengaged in their work? 4. Researchdesign, dynamics, sample and methodology to be used.In conducting this research wetend to have a sample of approximately 70 respondents that work in public andprivate sector. This would be a random sample, but also thinking aboutrespondents to differ in age, gender, level of education, as well as workposition.
Weplan to organize the research in two basic phases, excluding the phase of dataanalysis and making conclusions. In the first stage of conducting the research,respondents will show their attitudes towards survey questions, thusquantitative data can be gained. In the second stage, we plan to randomlychoose 6 from these respondents, where 3 of them work in private and 3 inpublic sector. Together they combine a focus group, where, through an opendiscussion, we expect to collect qualitative research data. By basic evaluationof qualitative date we can evaluate if we need more focus groups, and if yes,we will form them by combining participants in identical manner. Addressingthe research subject, we plan to use several qualitative and quantitativetechniques in data collecting and data analysis. For collecting the researchdata we are going to use closed written interview and focus groups, thus theinstrument s to be use will be custom made surveys and open-endedsemi-structured questionnaire.
In data analysis we plan to use severalquantitative statistic techniques like correlation coefficient and continuumscale but also qualitative data analysis. Weexpect to conduct this research in a logical timeframe of approximately 2months, regarding all procedures and consents needed for conducting the surveyamong employees in their companies. Additionally, we do not expect to collectall survey data in one day, regarding the employees free time and will towardsanswering the questions. The focus group would be conducted in one day, but wemay experience difficulties in organizing all participants in that particularday. The big extend of collected quantitative and qualitative data would alsobe organized and analyzed during this time frame.
5. Definingthe hypothesis The main hyphotesis for in this study is :If high level of intrinsic motivationexists among employees, then they show high levels of work engagement. Independentvariable: intrinsic motivation among employees Indicators: Survey questions that refer on employees sense ofmeaningfulness, personal choice, personal competence and growth Dependent variable: employeeswork engagement Indicators: Survey questions referring to employees’ level ofvigourness, dedication and absorption whole performing the job. Subhypothesis 1: When the sense of meaningfulness for performed job increases, employees work engagement increases. Independent variable: Thesense of meaningfulness for performed job Dependent variable: Employeeswork engagementSub hypothesis 2: When the senseof personal choice while working increases,employees work engagement increases. Independent variable: Thesense of personal choice while working Dependent variable: Employeeswork engagement Subhypothesis 3: In conditions where employees have strong feeling of personal competence for performed job, his workengagement increases. Independent variable: Feelingof personal competence for performed job Dependent variable: Employeeswork engagementSub hypothesis 4: When the senseof personal growth while working increases,employees work engagement increases.
Independent variable: Thesense of personal growth while working Dependent variable: Employeeswork engagement 1 Carr, Positive psychology, 1252 Fanga, M.and Gerhart, B. (March, 2012) Does pay for performance diminish intrinsicinterest? The International Journal ofHuman Resource Management.
Vol. 23, No. 6, March 2012, 1176–11963 Bakker, Arnold and William Shaufeli, The Measurement of Work Engagement With aShortQuestionnaire. Educational andPsychological Measurement. Vol 66 No.4 August 2006 701-716 4 Kenneth,Intrinsic motivation at work5 Ryan, M. R.
andDeci. L. E., (December, 2006) Self-Regulation and the Problem of HumanAutonomy: Does Psychology NeedChoice,Self-Determination, and Will?.
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