Effects of Socio- Economic Trends on the Management of Employee Motivation in 3-5 Star Hotels in Nairobi

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Wasike, Carolyne K.
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Although studies show that the reasons that drive people to work may depend on the individual, management can stilI determine whether employees get motivated or not. . This is possible even with the variation of human needs from person to person or even to the same individual at different stages of their careers and lives. However, the ever changing values in priorities for employees in response to the rise of the information age, technology advancement and lifestyle have made it more difficult for management in employee motivation. This study examined prevailing socio-economic trends among employees that may have a bearing on employee motivation, determined the effects of the identified trends on the management of employee motivation and managerial response to the challenges presented. The study was a cross sectional survey that involved 324 respondents drawn from twelve 3-5 star hotels in Nairobi. Structured and Semi structured questionnaires were used to collect data from the respondents. Descriptive statistics and cross tabulations were used to analyze quantitative data while inferential statistics were used to infer the findings into the population. Pearson Product Moment correlations were computed to determine the relationship between employee motivation, socio-economic trends and employee motivation management strategies. A t-test was performed to establish socio-economic trends that had a bearing in management of employee motivation in 3-5 star hotels in Nairobi. A correlation test was further performed to establish the effect of the identified socio-economic trends in management of employee motivation. The study established that socio-economic trends that had a bearing in management of employee motivation entailed increase in the cost of living, need for skill upgrading in the hotel sector and the need for higher salaries. Other than socioeconomic factors, managers felt that employees were difficult to please, blamed challenges in management of employee motivation to quitting of employees and competition from new hotels which offer better terms. Findings on the effect of the identified trends in management of employee motivation showed that when the cost of living went up, strategies that mitigated the effects of cost of living in management of employee motivation were gifts, promotions and bonus' payments/service charge. Employees, on the other hand, were ready to upgrade their skills in the hotel sector if the terms of service were improved, were taken for paid vacations, given bonus payments or promoted. The management responded to challenges in management of employee motivation by use of disciplinary action, discussion with employees on the way forward and forming of panels to make recommendations. The study thus recommends that employee motivation strategies be reviewed to reflect current employee motivational needs and the prevailing socio-economic trends in order to promote employee motivation hence improve service quality in Kenya's hospitality industry. This would be possible if employees are consulted in order to correctly establish their motivational needs.
Department of Tourism Management, 86 p. The HF 5549.5 M63W3 2013
Employee motivation