Motivation in the Private and Public Sectors

Motivation in the Private and Public Sectors

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Motivation in the Private and Public Sectors

            Employees working in the public sector tend to have low motivation levels compared to those working in the private sector. They do not face stiff competition and some are not as committed to their place of work as employees in the private sector (Mares, 2013). Consequently, they will tend to work for fewer hours compared to their counterparts in the private sector. Those who work in the private sector are often motivated by the high financial rewards offered in these organizations.

            People working in the public sector are aware that their pay is lower and that it does not compare with the private sector. They are motivated by other factors such as higher levels of authority and power when compared to employees in the private sector (Mares, 2013). Consequently, motivating employees in the public sector will include measures that seek to ensure that they have higher positions of power. In addition, some people join the public sector because they desire to serve others and because they want more responsibility in their roles. Therefore, such individuals will be motivated intrinsically as they will seek opportunities that make them more fulfilled in their work capacities.

            Public sector employees will be motivated if they are held accountable for their results and performance in their different capacities. This will encourage them to work harder as they seek to improve their performance. They can be empowered to make decisions and judgment and to practice their skills. This will encourage them to try out new approaches of carrying out different tasks (Martinelli, 2014). Recognizing employee efforts during appraisals is important even if it may not be accompanied by financial rewards (IPA, 2013). Such recognition provides intrinsic motivation that the employee needs and it may provide a way for the employee to be considered for other higher positions.


IPA (2013). Public service motivation. Institute of Public Administration. Retrieved from

Mares, J. (2013). 25 differences between private sector and government managers. Retrieved from

Martinelli, V. (2014). Maintaining employee motivation within the public sector. Retrieved from

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