What is Morale ?

In every organization, people are working within a subtle environment of attitudes. Each employee has attitudes that range over the entire spectrum of human behavior. All managers have a constant concern for the morale of the group which they lead. However, considerable confusion prevails over the use of the term morale because of variation in defining characteristic of the term. Some researchers make distinction between job satisfaction and morale, while others do not make this distinction. Some re his searchers take job satisfaction and morale as individual’s concern; some others take job satisfaction as individual phenomenon and morale as group phenomenon. From one point of view, morale may be regarded essentially and individual matter. It is described in terms of the feelings of an employee or manger toward his work; it is, thus, a matter of work satisfaction. Guion describes morale from the point of view of an individual worker and defines it as the degree to which an individual needs are satisfied and the degree to which the individual desires satisfaction from his total job situation. When morale is regarded as n individual phenomenon, many investigators organize these feelings what are assumed to be worker’s needs.

In contrast to this individual job satisfaction approach, most researchers are impressed with social or group significant of morale. They emphasis social reaction and concentrate on attitudes towards group values rather than towards individual values. They place less emphasis on working condition and more feelings of cohesiveness, group interest and identification with the mission of the group, and optimism about the successes of the whole. Thus, the concepts of job satisfaction and motivation both pertain to the individual and morale to the group.

Morale and Production: In general, there is a belief that morale and productivity go hand in hand and higher is the morale, higher is the productivity and vice versa. However, this is not true in all cases and morale and productivity may not go together. Generally, there is some positive correlation between morale and productivity but they are not absolutely related, that is, an increase of five percent in morale and productivity but they are not absolutely related, that is an increase of five percent in morale does not guarantee a proportional increase in productivity. It is quite possible to increase morale with either favorable or unfavorable shifts in production as shown in figure – 1:

Figure-1

In fact morale reflects attitudes of employees and there are a number of variables between employee attitude and productivity. An attitude in the individual tends to interpret understand, or define a situation or relationship with others. Attitudes are the individual’s likes or dislikes directed towards person’s, things, or situations, or combinations of all these. Since all expressed attitudes are not to be put into practice, it Is expected that morale will not be exactly related to productivity. A more accurate statement about high morale is that it indicates a predisposition to be more productivity. A more accurate statement about morale is that it indicates a predisposition to be more productive if leadership is effective along with proper production facilities, and individual’s ability. Such factors are presented in figure – 2:

This shows that productivity is a function of four factors- organizational factors, individual factors, attitudes, and morale. Attitudes and morale; in turn, are determined by the satisfaction of individuals which is again affected by organizational and individual factors. Thus, productivity is a function of several variables, of course, morale may be one of the important ones. The successful managers recognize that behavior management requires a positive integration of goals so that people working together will achieve the describe high morale with high productivity. Through it is possible to achieve high productivity with low morale as shown in figure1(line c), this position cannot continue for long because in the term run, employee will show their resistance, dissatisfaction, and restriction which eventually lead to low productivity.

Various research studies also support the view that morale and productivity are not perfectly related, through there is positive correlation between these two. They show that:

  • There is little evidence that employee morale has any relationship to performance on the job.
  • There are enough data to justify the morale as a factor in improving the workers output although the relationship between morale and productivity is not absolute and the correlations obtained in many studies are low, through positive.
  • The median correlation between morale and performance in various studies was found to be very low. Thus on the basis of such reviews it can be concluded that for higher productivity, high morale is necessary. However, it is said sometimes that high productivity is as much a cause for high morale as it is result of high morale.

 

HR-PROFESSIONALS ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR