In today's highly competitive environment, organisations realise that they can achieve their goals only through the combined efforts of everybody involved in the organisation. Previously, organisations relied on hierarchiacal, functionally orientated, command-and-control systems. Today, the adoption of a team-based work arrangement creates a flat, focused, flexible, and adaptive organisation capable of rapid responses to change. Groups and teamwork allow for greater participation, increased performance, and ultimately influence the motivation and satisfaction of employees. However, changing to a team-based structure does not guarantee success. Some groups tend to be more successful than others, and for this reason it is essential to investigate the factors that contribute to effective group functioning. The introduction of virtual teams into the workplace also offers new challenges for the way in which people are managed. In this chapter, we explore the nature of groups, how they develope, and the factors that contribute to effective group functioning. We examine the difference between groups and teams, and give special attention to the utilisation of teams in the workplace.
Motivating employees is one of the most important managerial functions. Successfully motivating employees is essential in the quest to utilise the full potential of people. This helps to maximize the quality of products and service. In Australia, being such a multi-cultural society and with a very diverse workforce, motivation is a vert complex issue. This is owing to the uniqueness of people and the wide range of internal and external factors that impact on it. Motivation is interdisciplinary and therefore cannot be separated from other branches of social sciences. An example is leadership, which is the ability to inspire people to voluntarily and enthusiastically work towards the attainment of organisational goals. But what is motivation? And how does one motivate people? The purpose of this chapter is to provide a comprehensive approach to the question of employee motivation. First, we explore the meaning of motivation. We investigate the practical application of various content and process theories in the workplace. The role of goal setting in motivation is examined, and the power of money as a motivator is considered. We also consider new developments in the study of motivation.