Motivation Case Study

1099 words - 5 pages


Martin Blanchard, Vice President for Research and Development at Bald eagle Software, sat in his office staring at an urgent memo from his boss. Although the memo had been sent to all five of the company’s vice presidents, Blanchard assumed that there was something personal in it that had been directed to him.

The message was simple but intense: orders were skyrocketing, but there was also a shortage of personnel to handle the demands of the high-tech company’s rapid growth. “In short,” the note said, “productivity has to improve.”

For several minutes, Martin thought about his workers: was there a bad apple who wasn’t pulling his or her ...view middle of the document...

Martin glared at Hank. “That’s another thing I want to talk to you about, Hank.” Martin continued. “It seems like you spend about an hour every morning chatting with the production workers, joking around with the marketing team….”

Hank’s smile faded, and he leaned forward in his chair.

“Well, sure….” Hank replied, “but I get the work done, don’t I? Have I ever let you down by not getting something done?”

“No,” Martin admitted. “In terms of output – both quality and quantity – you’re one of the best in the department…but that’s not the point.”

“Then, what is the point?” Hank asked, looking confused.

Martin slammed his fists on the desk.

“You’re undermining my authority – that’s the point!” Martin blurted out. “I’m in charge of this department! How do you think it makes me look when the president of the company walks through the production line and sees you sitting around having coffee? I want him to respect the control I have over my department. I want to be recognized as one of the strongest managers here! It makes me look bad when one of my most experienced software designers spends the whole morning making the rounds like a neighborhood gossip. You must become more productive.”

“But, Martin,” Hank objected, “I am productive – you said yourself that I’m one of the best in the department! Sure I like to chat with my buddies…but I also stay here past seven almost every night. I put in my hours just like everyone else.”

“No, Hank,” Martin replied, looking his subordinate straight in the eye. “From now on you’ll put in your hours like everyone else. You’re going to have to play the game by my rules.”

Hank’s face turned white. He loosened his tie before he spoke.

“What does that mean?” he stammered.

“First,” Martin began. “it means you will work here from nine to five with a half hour break for lunch. That’s it – no other breaks. Second, you can’t go around visiting other departments unless you have my permission beforehand. I’ll let you go – but only when a matter of company business is...

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