Business. Abraham Maslow

In this assignment I will describe different theories of motivation that BMW and Volkswagen implement. Furthermore I will suggestion and recommend how motivation can be modified at BMW and Volkswagen. (M2, D1).

M2 – BMW BMW have based their work force from an Australian psychologist called Elton Mayo. He believed that workers are not just concerned about money but could be better motivated by having their social needs met whilst at work. He discovered and concluded that workers are best motivated by better communication, greater management involvement and working in groups/teams.

The way in which this theory is applied in BMW is done by reducing the amount of hours workers do in order to take time in a 45 minute meeting to discuss problems and share suggestions and ideas surrounding the work place. BMW have realised that by having these discussions it has created an understanding relationship between managers and employees. These ideas have led to changes in practices. For example, a worker in one area of production suggested re-cycling screws that were being thrown out further down the production line. For example, a worker in one area of production suggested that screws that were being thrown out further down the production line should be re-cycled.

This has shown that by communicating with workers on their level to understand how their workplace and the resources that they use can be improved, it benefits the organisation as an end result. Furthermore, the scheme also allows managers and directors to work on the production along with employees. Managers are now able to socialise with fellow colleagues and understand the type of working environment they have to face each day.

The second motivational theory I believe BMW have adapted to their organisation is from Frederick Herzberg. He believed that there were certain factors that a business could introduce that would directly motivate employees to work harder. Herzberg believed that businesses should motivate employees by improving the nature and content of the actual job through certain methods. Some of which include job enlargement, enrichment and empowerment.

This was also implemented at BMW. A programme was created called “Wings”, working in groups or teams. It involves hundreds of teams, between 8-15 people across manufacturing areas. They were given the opportunity to tackle manufacturing problems themselves, whereas before they would have had to call in other departments to assist. Tasks are then rotated to prevent boredom in the production line. Volkswagen Group UK

The first motivational theorist I believe VW have applied in their organisation is from Frederick Winslow Taylor. He put forward the idea that workers are mostly motivated by pay and reward schemes. The way in which this is linked with Volkswagen Group UK is with a ‘total reward ‘remuneration package for its employees. This is where employees are given traditional income rewards, such as salaries, which are based on their job description.

There are a number of other rewards, which include a good pension scheme, exceptional maternity benefits, flexible working policies, car leasing at preferential rates and childcare vouchers. Furthermore there is also a company performance and profit bonus scheme. The reason I believe VW have applied this theory to their workforce is because as a company with a high reputation in the car industry they are expected to produce the best with a wide variety for customers.

Therefore they have ensured that employees are constantly motivated to produce at a high standard in order to achieve large amount of pay where they can then continue this to receive the same reward. By comparing both BMW and VW UK, it is clear that BMW focus more on creating positive team relationships between managers and employees whereas VW focus on producing more on the production line by motivating employees by reward and recognition.

D1 – BMW The first strategy BMW could use to improve their motivational scheme is by building a foundation. It is important to build a solid foundation for employees so that they feel invested in the company or an important addition to the workforce. Employers or managers can inform them about the history of the business and their vision for the future. For example, the new forms of technology that will be implemented into future vehicles or other companies they plan to work with.

The benefits that this will bring are firstly, it will allow the employee to feel more relaxed and welcome into the organisation. This is vital for a company such as BMW as they are known for producing one of the best performance vehicles in the world. Therefore if employees working in the production line do not feel wanted in the company, it is likely that their final output won’t be as impressive as it could be. Another benefit that this strategy can bring is that it will enhance BMW’s reputation for the treatment of their employees.

In addition this can become an attractive factor towards people who wish to work for BMW once they are qualified to do so, which therefore is likely to increase their workforce, which as a result improves their chances of producing better vehicles than rival companies. In my opinion, I think it is important for a company such as BMW to build a welcoming foundation for their employees because when joining such a large and complex business, it is vital to know your job role appropriately and know what they have achieved in the past. This is so that you become aware of what BMW are expecting of you as their employee. Volkswagen Group UK

The first strategy of motivation VW could use comes from Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. Maslow’s theory included Social and Self Esteem needs in his hierarchy of needs. One way in which this can be improved at VW is by introducing a reward ceremony whereby employees who are lower in the organisational structure are the main focus. This is so that they feel appreciated by the company and self-recognition by employees is there.

One of the benefits that this can bring is that it generally improves the social bond between senior workers and regular employees in the workplace as they are able to talk about what they admire about some of their employees and what certain skills are appreciated. It also gives them a chance to talk about what other aspects they are looking for from their employees to improve production and the way in which they handle their daily jobs.

Conclusion I feel that motivation has a large effect on the output of such as BMW and VW UK. These types of business rely heavily on the efficiency of their production staff to make sure that vehicles are manufactured in numbers that meet demand for the week. If these employees lack the motivation to produce completed vehicles to meet the demand, then they face a problem leading to disastrous consequences. Employees are their greatest asset and no matter how efficient their technology and equipment may be, it is no match for the effectiveness and efficiency of your staff.