The Wynn Las Vegas boasts pride of place among the plush hotels and casinos on the Strip along Las Vegas Boulevard. As one of the largest hotels, it has a large workforce that must remain motivated. Performance-related pay is one of the methods used to keep housekeeping employees motivated. There is a lack of consensus among scholars regarding its use. It seems suited for some types of jobs and not others. This controversy underlines the interest in researching the effects of performance-related pay on the motivation of housekeeping staff at the Wynn Las Vegas.
Motivation plays a key role in performance. It is “one of the most basic elements of human behavior” (Werner & DeSimone, 2008). This is true in most human endeavors. In the workplace, “motivation leads to greater work performance” (Bruce & Pepitone, 1998). A motivated individual pursues goals with greater vigor and focus. He has a better chance of attaining the set objective. There are several theories concerning motivation some of which are, “needs-based” (Griffin & Moorhead, 2009). One of the best known is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. In this theory, Maslow identifies five levels ranging from physical needs to self-actualization needs. Maslow contended that in his hierarchy, a met need is no longer a source of motivation (Chopra, 2002). The determination as to what extent Maslow’s hierarchy holds sway in the motivation of these employees will provide interesting findings. In addition, the role of intrinsic motivation will influence the research. (Kuvaas & Dysvik, 2009)
Another important theory of motivation is the expectancy theory. This theory states that a person decides to take a certain course of action over others because of the outcome he expects. The theory proposes that management may motivate workers to perform certain tasks if they attach a reward to the specific task. Using this theory, an organization’s reward system focuses on highly desirable behaviors. These theories will inform the process of determining the degree to which performance-related pay influences the motivation levels of housekeeping employees at the Wynn Las Vegas. The study will take cognizance of the fact that beyond motivation, many other factors influence job satisfaction (Sell & Cleal, 2011).
The rationale for this study is to determine the extent to which money serves as a motivator. Secondly, it provides an opportunity to see its particular application in the housekeeping section of a busy hotel. This provides us with an opportunity to determine whether performance-related pay applies equally to all job categories, or it works best in specific jobs. In this respect, there is a call for caution by Green (1992) who observes that what motivates one employee is not necessarily, what motivates another. However, Chuang and Liao(2010) point out that in an institution, employees have shared perceptions regarding motivation.
Several considerations inform the study design and methods chosen for a research project. “Design deals primarily with aims, uses, purposes, intentions, and plans within the practical constraints of time, location, money and availability of staff” (Hakim, 2000) A library-based research will suffice for the literature review for the study with the aim of exploring motivation theories. It will also seek to determine the scope of research done so far relating to performance-related pay.
After data collection and analysis, the final report, together with the recommendations will go to the managers and the owners of the Wynn for possible implementation. Anderson (2004) states, “HR research that is carried out in a rigorous way can lead to more effective practice than decisions based mainly on intuition, common sense, or personal preferences”. Preferably, there will be a presentation of the findings in a reporting meeting. Otherwise, an email will suffice for the dispatching of the report. The preferred research method for this study will be cross-sectional as opposed to longitudinal. This means that the research will capture a snapshot view of the impact of performance-related pay. It will not seek to follow trends over time or to determine how they have changed. It will examine the current procedures and their current impacts. The justification for this approach is that time available for the project does not allow for a longitudinal study. Secondly, the objectives of the research do not call for a longer-term study but will seek to identify the need for more studies in the same area. As the objectives stand, the best way to meet them is by a cross-sectional study, which calls for a manageable resource outlay. Swanson and Holton (1997) indicate that the product of research is new and useful knowledge. This remains the object of this project.
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