The term ‘motivation’ has been derived from the word ‘motive’. Motive means the urge to do something. Motivation may be defined as the process of inducing or inspiring people to take the desired course of action.
According to Stephen Robbins, “Motivation is the willingness to exert high levels of effort towards organisational goals, conditioned by the efforts ability to satisfy some individual needs.”
The process of motivation begins with the awareness of a need. Feeling of an unsatisfied need causes tension. A person takes some action to satisfy his need. If the action succeeds to satisfy the need, the person feels motivated. In case the action fails, the person takes a different action. When the present need is satisfied, a new need arises and the process is repeated.
Thus, motivation involves interaction between needs and incentives. Incentives are the inducements which are used to motivate people. An incentive has motivational power because it helps to satisfy some need. Several financial and non-financial incentives are used to motivate people.