Updated: Mar 17
Some words are used so often that they lose their power. They fall on our head like confetti. Let’s look at each one of these words or phrases and see how they might connect.
“Motivation” is the energy that moves us toward our goals. Things start to happen when we are motivated, and we start to have “positive feelings” when we see progress. These are the building blocks that are used to create “confidence”. From here on in, “productivity” and “job satisfaction” make up the aura that surrounds us. Our peers and managers call it ”superior performance”.
Employee motivation has been found to be a direct link to productivity. Employees are generally satisfied when their jobs provide values that they seek, whether it be a good wage, a sense of fulfillment, a sense of being a part of something, or status. High job satisfaction should be a top priority for organizations because it enhances job performance.
So– Satisfied employees who have positive feelings perform better in fulfilling their tasks properly. Positive feelings increase creativity, problem-solving skills, decision-making abilities, and improvement in memory recall associated with their jobs. Imagine the opposite! –Low job satisfaction engages more destructive, counter-productive, and harmful behavior to the organization and to other employees.
The key to motivation is to examine the employees’ values. When their values are met, they are satisfied with their jobs. Satisfied employees will participate in behavior that affects productivity in a positive way. They are more likely to be team players and will impact other employees positively.
Although the relationship of job satisfaction to productivity and performance is strong, job satisfaction does not necessarily guarantee increased productivity. There are also other, negative, factors that increase productivity, such as the threat of losing a job in an economic downturn. When unemployment is high, the sense of urgency to perform well may increase in order to protect jobs. In a situation like this, job satisfaction weakens as a factor in performance, and urgency—and perhaps anxiety—take over. Unfortunately, this creates a stressful work environment, although there is productivity.
Leadership & Executive Coach
Eileen Pawlowski, Editor
Alshallah, S. (2004). Job satisfaction and motivation: How do we inspire employees? US National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health (NIH), 26(2), 47-51. Retrieved from
Colquitt, J. A., LePine, J. A., & Wesson, M. J. (2010). Organizational behavior, improving performance and commitment in the workplace. (2nd ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin. Retrieved from http://highered.mcgraw- hill.com/sites/dl/free/0073530085/535230/Chapter4_Job_Satisfaction.pdf
Daft, R. L. (2011). The Leadership Experience. Mason, OH: South-Western Cengage Learning.