The early days of Uris Hall’s dormitory kitchen were characterized by excellent food and a content, tight-knit staff. The employees’ feelings of satisfaction and utmost commitment to their jobs are best explained using Herzberg’s Motivator-Hygiene Model. This motivation theory relies on the assumption that satisfaction and dissatisfaction in the workplace are independent of each other, and a different set of factors is responsible for causing each emotion. One motivating factor is the employees’ sense of achievement in their work. The case stresses that the eleven women who worked in the kitchen felt a consistent sense of pride in their labor; they went to great lengths to ensure superior quality of output. The subsequent recognition and outstanding reputation the workers received for their good food further contributed to their overall contentment. Furthermore, their work was stimulating; each employee had the ability to make independent decisions regarding purchases and food preparation. This responsibility, along with a strong sense of duty to complete tasks and fulfill specific roles, gave the cafeteria workers a strong sense of purpose and a willingness to get the job done each and every day.
Simultaneously, a number of hygiene factors were in place to mitigate the undesirable conditions of the Uris Hall kitchen. First, the kitchen’s Theory Y approach to organizational policy was one that all staff enjoyed. The laissez-faire management style of both the dormitory director and the head cook allowed the kitchen staff to form their own norms. Most significantly, the employees’ established strong interpersonal relationships with one another; they did not merely consider themse...
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...ding the cafeteria cleaning issue, new people could be hired to explicitly clean the cafeteria. This would lessen the duties on the new, inexperienced workers and allow them to leave an hour earlier. As a result, their morale should improve and they will likely feel more equivalent in status to the morning crew.
Another manner in which management could address waning morale is by providing advancement opportunities. Promoting some of the old staff to team leader positions would encourage the ladies by giving them a concrete, achievable goal. In addition, the supervisor should demonstrate appreciation for employee job performance, and sympathy when listening to their complaints and problems. These factors are some of the most important to employees, and showing them consideration would likely greatly improve the overall atmosphere of the workplace.
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