Triggering Employee Motivation in Adverse Organizational Contexts: “Going the Extra Mile” while Holding Hands with Uncertainty?

Daniel Roque Gomes, Vanda Asseiro, Neuza Ribeiro


Current Economic and Market Crisis has launched the debate concerning the role of the Human Resources (HR) in organizations. The up to this point strategic discourse concerning this management area seems to be in discussion, mainly due to the need of consistency between cost-cutting organizational strategies and a high pressure for Sustainable HR Management (HRM) practices. The ability of organizations to manage their HR indicators in order to deliver strategic differentiation is a critical concern of Sustainability in HR. Employee’s motivation is a core performance indicator in HRM, due to the strongly and consensually documented association with productivity, absenteeism or turnover.

An issue deserving consideration is to understand how practitioners may motivate employees in current adverse economic contexts, as the existing knowledge surrounding employee’s motivation was fundamentally based on growing-based economic scenarios. The main objective of the present study is thus, to explore an answer to the question: how to predict employee motivation in organizations embedded in adverse contexts?

One hundred and ten employees from fifteen stores of an organization from a sector of a clothing brand consists the sample of our study. Participants voluntarily answered to a survey questionnaire that contained measures of the study variables. The hypotheses were tested using linear regression methodology.

Empirical evidences showed that the quality of the organization-employee relation seems to be more important than the quality of the job-employee relation to explain employee’s motivation. In addition, results suggest that when the workers recognize fairness in the organization’s procedures, they feel stronger support from the organization and this has the ability to motivate them.

The importance and significance of these results are discussed at theoretical and empirical levels, and we advance a set of recommendations to HR practitioners, in order to apply good employee’s motivation practices.

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Business and Management Research
ISSN 1927-6001 (Print)   ISSN 1927-601X (Online)

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