Organisational behaviour HR Essay Example

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The impact of organizational commitment on employee motivation

The impact of organizational commitment on employee motivation


Today’s businesses are seeking all manners by which they can succeed in their operations. A vital element of success in an organization is employees and specifically motivated employees. Moreover, the ability to motivate employees is an indispensable skill for good and effective managers. However, there are numerous strategies and methods that can be used to motivate employees. Recent research argues that attitudes such as organizational commitment play a role in motivating employees to ensure increased productivity and performance. Organizational commitment is described as an attitude concerning employees’ loyalty or devotion towards the organization, its values, welfare, members, and success. Work motivation is a psychological aspect that creates energetic forces both internally and externally to initiate increased desire to achieve more in the workplace. The following paper aims at analyzing how organizational commitment plays a role in motivating employees.

Organizational commitment and internal motivation

Organizational commitment is all about an employee’s feeling of belonging in the organization. According to Choong et al., (2011), there are different types of organizational commitment including normative, affective, and continual. One of the types us normative commitment that is defined as the concern of an employee’s felling of requirement to remain in the organization based on one’s values and norms. It is from this personal basis of values and norms that organizational commitment influences intrinsic motivation. Motivation of employees can be categorized in two dimensions including intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation is where employees illustrate increased effort in their actions or duties because they find it interesting and enjoyable rather than expecting a separable outcome. Choong et al., (2011) found a relationship between organizational commitment and intrinsic motivation after conducting a study on Malaysian lectures from private universities. The study concluded that managers who focused on increasing the authority, responsibility, and offering challenging tasks enabled employees to be motivated. Therefore, developing an enabling environment for employees develops their organizational commitment in internal ways that pushes them to deliver above expectations without necessary expecting rewards or outcomes. Moreover, organizational commitment was also cited as a major influence in internal motivation where the organization offered the desired work content of employees (Altindis, 2011). Organizations with well-defined and value-shared work contents can increasingly motivate their employees effective performance and increased productivity.

Organizational commitment can be developed through clarification and communication of the organization’s mission and values. Therefore, employees who illustrate organizational commitment share and accept the organizations values and goals as well as willingness to exert considerable effort on behalf of the organization. According to Mohsan, et al., (2011) employees can be motivated from learning and witnessing to an organization’s values as well as goals. Respondents in the study indicated that the goals and values of their organization played a significant role in their decision not to leave the organization as well illustrate extra effort. This means that managers who communicate and clarify the values and objectives of the organization can effectively motivate their employees for enhanced performance and success. Additionally, managers who walk their talk or lead by example play a significant role in motivating employees. Managers develop organizational commitment in their employees by leading by example (Devece et al., 2015). In turn, employees feel an inner emotional and psychological connection towards the organization based on the behaviors of executive managers. This means that a company where managers are transparent and accountable can help in developing employee commitment that eventually motivates employees on an individual level.

Organizational commitment can also influence internal employee motivation through support or empowerment. Managers who focus on supporting their employees tend to increase their organizational commitment. Employees who are committed to organizations accept and have a strong intention work towards achieving the organization’s goals and objectives. When employees are supported or empowered, they tend to feel obligated to accept and work towards the organization. A study by von Treuer, McHardy & Earl (2013), concluded that new trainees relied on their affective commitment to the organization for increased motivation in their training programs. These trainees expressed their desire to remain in the company, which motivated them to take up training (Treuer, McHardy & Earl, 2013). Moreover, organizations that focus on empowering their employees through orientation, training, and job challenges enable increased motivation. Most employees who experience such developmental and empowerment initiatives feel a desire to offer greater effort from within. This can be linked to job satisfaction, where the psychological factors are taken into consideration. Employees who are empowered feel an emotional and professional obligation to remain in the organization and work towards its goals, but on a motivated level. This means that employees who may be willing to leave the company are not motivated at all and will not put extra effort in their activities. There is a strong need for managers to empower their employees in order for them to become committed to the organization, thus motivating them in the process. Both committed and motivated employees are a critical element of success for today’s business.

Organizational commitment and external motivation

External motivation comprises of the external or outside influences that leads an employee to change their behaviors. Such motivation is mostly based on feedback and rewards where employees feel the need to put in extra effort in their work based on the gains they stand to get. Research has also concluded that organizational commitment can positively influence external motivation. According to Rahmawati et al., (2014), employees who received constant feedback from their managers express increased motivation in their jobs. When managers offer feedback on performance, employees tend to feel appreciated and in turn are more willing to achieve more in the workplace. Additionally, employees working as a team appreciate genuine sharing of ideas as well as roles that promotes team work motivation. Communication also plays a significant role in motivating employees. Organizational commitment is developed through fairness and equity by offering avenues for two-way communication. This means that managers can interact openly with their employees and vice versa. When employees are offered the opportunity to air their grievances or opinions, they become committed to the organization, thus becoming increasingly motivated (Yang, 2008). Moreover, managers who recognize their employees tend to make them more committed to the organization. Through this recognition, employees feel obligated to accept and share the goals and objectives of the organization. Managers who recognize and acknowledge hard working employees tend to offer them external stimuli to work harder. Recognition and appreciation can be in numerous forms such as promotions, financial incentives, or awards. Such incentives tend to promote the overall motives of the employees towards setting higher goals or achieving more in their workplace.

Organizational commitment impact on general employee motivation

Organizational commitment has illustrated increased influence on employee motivation. Most employees who are committed to the organization tend to feel an obligation to stay or remain with the organization. This means that such an employee has already made up their mind to remain with organization. This expresses increased job satisfaction to a certain extent. According to Folorunso, Adewale & Abodunde, (2014) employees with increased organizational commitment illustrates an emotional attachment to the organization, which translates to a superior desire to contribute implicitly to the organization. Such employees are motivated based on the fact that they go beyond their required or expected efforts to developing an inner desire for achieving more within the organization. Additionally, employees with strong organizational commitment are likely to enjoy their work and choose to preoccupied less and work harder. A study conducted on a university faculty illustrated that employees with high organizational commitment developed extra-role performance illustrating increased interest and satisfaction with their work (Folorunso, Adewale & Abodunde, 2014). Some of the most committed employees in the faculty performed extra roles such as helping their co-workers voluntarily, volunteering for special roles and tasks, and even working early and late without even overtime arrangements (Folorunso, Adewale & Abodunde, 2014). Committed employees are also the kind of people who are considerate of customer concerns and will often suggest solution and resolutions when conflicts arise.

The influence of organizational commitment also extends to managers where managers with strong organizational commitment report higher levels of compliance. Managers who illustrate strong affective commitment tend to offer strategic decisions while avoiding budgetary loose in financial planning (Altindis, 2011). Moreover, these managers are also more willing to involve in organizational citizenship (Yang, 2008). These managers feel obligated to remain in the organization and work towards its goals, thus there extra effort in all their actions, which translates to motivation. Employees and managers who are committed also enhance accountability, competitiveness, and desire for inclusive performance. Employees who have an emotional connection and attachment can easily engage in healthy competitiveness that involves increased motivation. Additionally, committed employees are also motivated to improve their overall performance in order to be in line with the values and goals of the organization.

Clarity of purpose is one of the elements needed to develop the attitude or behavior of organizational commitment (Devece et al., 2015). The communication of goals and objectives tends to promote a sense of belonging as well as accepted and shared values and goals. When employees feel that they are in the right organization, they tend to be satisfied with their jobs. Job satisfaction is also interrelated with motivation as motivated employees express increased job satisfaction. The whole dimension of organizational commitment and its influence on employee motivation involves numerous correlations. It has even been determined that most of the technique used for motivating employees end up creating increased organizational commitment (Treuer, McHardy & Earl, 2013). Therefore, there is a two-way relationship in employee motivation and organizational commitment. Managers who seek to motivate their employees tend to communicate by offering recognition, appreciation, and feedback. However, the same incentives can also lead to increased organizational commitment. Dwivedula, Bredillet & Müller (2013), found a positive correlation between employee motivation and organizational commitment. Trainees who were interviewed believed that they became committed to the organization after undergoing several motivational experiences in the workplace. Another study found that employees who are offered promotions as well as career development options such as promotions developed increased commitment and illustrated reduced intentions to leave the organization. Nonetheless, empowering employees is also part of increasing organizational commitment. Overall, organizational commitment has illustrated increased ability to motivate employees through their correlations in terms of the guidelines needed to achieve a change in attitude.

Implications for managers

Effective managers should focus on exploiting organizational commitment in order to motivate their employees. Managers seeking to motivate their employees should understand all about organizational commitment. The first important step is more of a leadership role that requires managers to clarify the purpose, goals, vision, and mission of the organization. Employees should know what the organization seeks to achieve in the long-term and its purpose. Managers should also commit to people by ensuring that the values of the organization can be seen in actions. This means leading by example, because no employee will be committed to an organization where managers talk of something but rarely turn it into action. Additionally, managers should also illustrate organizational justice through fairness and equity in all process including decision making. Empowerment is also a key element to influence employee behaviors. Employees who are trained, promoted, and whose job security is assured tend to illustrate increased commitment as well as motivation.


In conclusion, organizational commitment is all about being loyal to the organization in terms of accepting its values and goals, willingness to achieve the goals, and feeling obligated to remain with the organization. When employees express such attitudes they tend to become motivated in numerous ways. Committed employees are people with the desire to work hard and enhance their overall performance for the sake of the organization. Organizational commitment also helps in ensuring that employees feel appreciated and in return they choose to improve in their achievements. Additionally, organizational commitment motivates employees by ensuring that the organization’s values are in line with those of the employees. Overall, organizational commitment has invaluable capability to enhance employee motivation and enhance overall performance and success.


Altindis, S. (2011). Job motivation and organizational commitment among the health professionals: A questionnaire survey. African Journal of Business Management, 5(21), 8601-8609.

Choong, Y. O., Wong, K. L., & Lau, T. C. (2011). Intrinsic motivation and organizational commitment in the Malaysian private higher education institutions: an empirical study. International Refereed Research Journal, 2(4), 40-50.

Devece, C., Palacios-Marqués, D., & Pilar Alguacil, M. (2015). Organizational commitment and its effects on organizational citizenship behavior in a high-unemployment environment. Journal Of Business Research, 2(4), 156-166.

Dwivedula, R., Bredillet, C., & Müller, R. (2013). Work motivation as a determinant of organisational and professional commitment in temporary organisations: theoretical lenses and propositions. Journal of Project, Program & Portfolio Management, 4(1), 11-29.

Folorunso, O. O., Adewale, A. J., & Abodunde, S. M. (2014). Exploring the Effect of Organizational Commitment Dimensions on Employees Performance: An Empirical Evidence from Academic Staff of Oyo State Owned Tertiary Institutions, Nigeria. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 4(8), 275-286.

Mohsan, F., Nawaz, M. M., Khan, M. S., Shaukat, Z., & Aslam, N. (2011). Are employee motivation, commitment and job involvement inter-related: Evidence from banking sector of Pakistan. International Journal of Business and Social Science, 2(17), 226-233.

Rahmawati, Y., Abiddin, N. Z., & Ro’is, I. (2014). Relationship Between Motivation and Organizational Commitment among Scout Volunteers in East Kalimantan. Journal of Social Science Studies, 2(1), p51.

von Treuer, K., McHardy, K., & Earl, C. (2013). The Influence of Organisational Commitment, Job Involvement and Utility Perceptions on Trainees’ Motivation to Improve Work through Learning. Journal Of Vocational Education And Training, 65(4), 606-620.

Yang, J. (2008). Effect of newcomer socialisation on organisational commitment, job satisfaction, and turnover intention in the hotel industry. Service Industries Journal, 28(4), 429-443.