Organization and Identity: Photo Essay



Motivation is considered as an important aspect of organizational behaviour and a scientific concept where greater emphasis is given on the influence or impact of human behaviour. Thus, motivation can be considered as establishment of a causal relationship between behaviour and motives (Sievers, 1986). Surrogate of motivation indicates that there exists an increasing misbalance in the work life and personal life of employees in an organization and it is caused due to higher rate of segmentation and fragmentation in contemporary workplace (Sievers, 1986). Surrogate of motivation can also be emphasized by highlighting to both employees and managers that death is a part of life. Therefore by acknowledgement of the essence of morality humanization can lead to motivation (Sievers, 1986).

A greater focus on the ‘human factor’ in management and organization can be attained with the greater understanding of the theory of surrogate of motivation. ‘Motivation as a surrogate for meaning’ is a way that denotes the procedure of acceptance of underlying theories of motivation that can be applied from an organizational perspective (Sievers, 1994). From this theory, various other concepts and perspectives can be adopted such as leadership and participation in a group activity (Sievers, 1994). This essay highlights the importance of the theory in organizational management and its subsequent impact on human factor has also been established based on various motivational factors such as organizational managerial control, resistance, sociological dimensions of power and inequality. These aspects will be covered on the basis of the three pictures reflecting various matters of life.

Self-Reflective Analysis

Image 1: Sympathetic Attitude

Sympathetic Attitude

Image 2: Decision-Making and Greater Acceptance

Decision-Making and Greater Acceptance

Image 3: Participation in Group Activity

Image 1 projects the sympathetic attitude and behaviour that are delved towards the dog by two children. According to me, this kind of behaviour comprises of the surrogate of motivation as it is indicating basic humanisation, which leads to motivation. Image 2 projects a group of student from diverse cultural and economic background who have gathered to discuss something essential. According to me, this picture projects an important aspect of surrogate of motivation i.e. group discussion leading to greater acceptance of other’s point of view and formulation of a specific decision. Image 3 presents a bright picture where a band of singers are entertaining its audience and it indicates specifically a street play. According to me, this picture denotes participation in a group activity where there exists a people having diverse talent and skill. Thus, management and humanization recognition of such diverse group of people can only be achieved only via application of surrogate of motivation.

Sociological Dimension of Power

There exists inherent sociological dimension of power held in management of human resources in an organization (Sussman, 2017). This aspect of management and leadership can be applied in surrogate of motivation with the help of detailed process of communication and functioning. A leader can use the act of power to motivate a group of employees working in an organization (Sussman, 2017). According to me, this concept of sociological dimension of power can be applied in a group activity where there exists a great requirement of acceptance of people from various cultural and economic background.

According to me, image 1 highlights a greater level of empathy towards the subordinates who are weak and cannot efficiently contribute to the operational activities of an organization. Thus, I believe that this class of employees in an organization requires sympathetic attitude, greater assistance and kind behaviour that will lead to greater acceptance of the theory of surrogate of motivation stressing on the humanization of employees at workplace. I believe that this can happen when a leader comes into action and assumes a greater responsibility to motivate these employees. In an organization that this theory is applied by leader or manager who has greater patience and a responsible attitude towards the subordinates. These leaders understand the concept of humanization from the perspective of the employees and subordinates who need detailed training and developmental skills to strengthen their decision-making activities and other related works. This would enhance their motivation and thus enable them to offer their best performance to the development of the organization.

The image 2 is projecting a greater level of inclusion of people hailing from different economic and cultural background and presenting their opinion in a group discussion. I believe that the theory of surrogate of motivation can be applied in this aspect where there is an existence of a possibility of clash among people coming from different background with varied experiences. A greater sociological dimension of power by the leader or manager of a particular department can be applied to enhance motivation among the employees in a group discussion. According to me, in a group discussion people hailing from different economic and cultural background possess varied opinions often conflicting in nature and thus as a leader it is necessary from a sociological perspective to understand everyone’s view in the discussion and proceed with what seems to be profitable to the functioning of the organization.

Image 3 depicts participation in a group activity. I believe that diverse range of people with varied skills and talents come together to achieve certain target and objectives to attain a competitive positioning for the firm in which they are working. Thus, sociological dimension of power in motivation also indicates utilisation of their social skills and talents so that their productivity enhances with motivation. The strengths of this aspect lie in greater acceptance of people hailing from different economic, political and cultural background and having varied skills, talents, capabilities, perception and perspective. The weakness of this approach in motivation might lead to too much acceptance which might ultimately lead to greater conflict, miscommunication and misinterpretation if not properly addressed.


Inequality constitutes an important aspect of the theory of surrogate of motivation where a greater emphasis is focused on the human quality existent in every women and men. This human quality would successfully eliminate the inequality existent in organizational structure and managerial activities (Sievers, 1994). Fight for equality is essential in a workplace as it contributes to be a significant aspect of motivating employees working in an organization. Inequality in surrogate of motivation thus additionally focuses on removal of discrimination and subsequently creates greater awareness to reawaken the spirit of humanity and arouse motivation (Sievers, 1994). 

Image 1 projects the sympathetic attitude and behaviour of an individual towards others. I have often seen in organizations that there exists discrimination of compensation structure and position between men and women as the latter are mistreated. Sometimes, I have also seen that pregnant women who are working in an organization are often not treated with respect and empathy that they should receive from their co-workers or the team of management. Thus, it is important to delve certain amount of equal respect and a sympathetic attitude and behaviour towards such women who contribute greatly towards the success of an organization.

In image 2, there is a presentation of a discussion group hailing from different cultural and economic background. This picture thus projects the emphasis of equal treatment in a group discussion for attainment of specific objective. Inequality can persist in group discussion or working in an environment of an organization due to lack of proper motivation and encouragement. I have seen in many instances that the opinion of women is suppressed in group discussions of an organization as their decisions, opinions and judgements are not considered to be of any significance. This is a general condition in a male-dominated organization where the opinions as well as works are not given due significance. Thus, in this case inequality persists proactively. I believe that this condition can be dealt with greater acceptance and removal of any act that indicates inequality. Hence, this will be able to motivate them and recognize their valuable contribution to the organization.

Image 3 indicating a group activity where diverse people with unique talent and skill is working together. I have been in an organization where different groups of people are engaged to conduct different activities and is subjected to inequality due to the perception of the leader. I believe that if a leader of an organization can segregate their activities and works on the basis of the skills and talents possessed by individual, then employees will be motivated to deliver their best performance. A realization will be aroused among them based on the fact that their talents and works are greatly recognized as well as they can positively contribute towards something beneficial.

The strength of this approach is that it accepts different people having varied level of talents and skills and recognising the same after removal of inequality. This act thus leads to working of a motivational factor among the employees and an encouragement to work in a better way. The underlying limitation of this approach is that often organizations fail to properly utilize the diverse range of talents to their best.

We can write
your paper for you
100% original
24/7 service
50+ subjects


Organisational change is perceived as a primary aspect of gradual progression towards the adoption of new technologies, business procedures and new job roles and responsibilities (J.D. Ford, L.W. Ford and D’Amelio, 2008).  However, there are many circumstances in which employees tend to resist themselves from any change to take place in an organisation effectively. Employee resistance has been identified as a complex issue faced by the managers in implementing organisational changes (Sievers, 1994). According to my perception, lack of sufficient motivation among the employees fails to develop a feeling of attachment and belongingness towards the organisations.  In such a situation, the employees and the mangers do not share a relationship of adequate trust and confidence (A. Gilley, J.W. Gilley and McMillan, 2009). As a result the employees have a relative offensive attitude towards the organisations pertaining to implement change. I have found a strong application of the concept of surrogate of motivation to organisational resistance to change.

The first image highlights that an organisation resents to sympathetic attitude towards its employees with the aim of enhancing their motivation level. According to me, generous and kind hearted mangers have a higher degree of influence on his subordinates. It results in developing a relationship of mutual trust, confidence and belongingness among them (J.D. Ford, L.W. Ford and D’Amelio, 2008). I believe that this cordial relationship helps to enhance the perceived level of employee motivation. In such an organisational scenario, employees develop an attitude that the changes are taking place primarily to give a better work life. It plays a significant role in reducing the perceived degree of resistance to organisational change among the employees. Humanisation, the basic factor of surrogate of motivation is largely reflected through the kind, generous and understanding attitude of the employees (Sievers, 1994). According to me, this organisational practice will help in reducing the work-life stress of the employees as they can directly interact with the senior officials and discuss about the problems being faced by them relating to change management. However, I have found out that employees often develop a feeling that the managers have a biased attitude in exhibiting kind and generous attitude towards all the subordinates. This type of feeling directly results in the development of negative attitude with a high degree of resistance attitude towards change management (A. Gilley, J.W. Gilley and McMillan, 2009).

The second image relates to the effort given by a coordinated team of members while dealing with organisational tasks. From this image, I have found that the organisation highly values the thoughts, beliefs and ideas of everyone irrespective of their religion, nationality, gender and the organisational level to which they belong to before incorporating any massive change in business practices. I believe that this organisational practice helps in developing a feeling among the employees that the organisation highly values their capabilities and therefore gives them an opportunity to provide valuable insights to the important decision making. Therefore, important decisions relating to change management are implemented by taking into consideration the concern of all the employees involved. The employees well aware of the changes taking place do not exhibit any form of resistance and happily acknowledge them out of the high degree of motivation towards change management (A. Gilley, J.W. Gilley and McMillan, 2009). The perceived weakness of this organisational aspect often fails to develop a feeling of motivation among the employees.

The third picture indicates that organisations highly value the diverse skills and knowledge set possessed by each of the employees. According to me, an organisation tends to exhibit high degree of humanisation towards its employees by giving relevant importance to the skill, talent and knowledge set possessed by them. Employees are highly motivated when the managers appraise and acknowledge them for their relative skills and competencies. I feel that support and acknowledgement by senior officials tend to increase the participation level of the employees to organisational decision making. The increased rate of employee participation plays an important part of surrogate of motivation and ensures employees being well aware of the change management decision making (A. Gilley, J.W. Gilley and McMillan, 2009). According to me, this motivational aspect tends to reduce the resistance attitude of the employees as they are well aware of the benefits associated with it. In many situations I have found out that employees misinterpret the organisational appraisal system due to which the whole idea of surrogate of motivation fails miserably.

Organisational Managerial Control

The relative strength of an organisation in managing the workforce plays a significant role in the development of high degree of motivation and encouragement among the employees. Organisations highly rely on developing an effective work culture and most importantly incorporate appropriate business methods to ensure high degree of employee motivation (Robbins, 2009). According to me, organisations stress high importance on maintaining a proper balance between the personal and professional life of the employees by completely ignoring the aspects of any form of segmentation based on race, religion or gender. I believe humanisation policies towards employees largely help an organisation to accomplish its goals effectively.

From the first image, I have developed an idea that a caring and loving attitude towards the workforce is an essential aspect of motivating employees. According to me, humanisation is characterized by kind and generous attitude of an individual towards others. The image is a clear indication of the fact that the organisational leaders tend to enhance the skill and attributes of the employees through a cooperative and kind-hearted attitude (Robbins, 2009). I feel that employees highly relate to a loving and caring attitude from the organisational leaders. An important strength of this organisational attitude is that it helps in developing a feeling of belongingness among the employees, out of which they tend to exhibit high degree of performance standards (Robbins, 2009). I believe humanisation aspect of motivation is a significant contributor of encouraging employees towards accomplishing their organisational goals. However, I have found that this approach tends to fail miserably when the employees take advantage of the kind and generous attitude of the higher management. The employees develop a reluctant attitude out of which they tend to exhibit low standards of work performance (Robbins, 2009). 

Deadlines from 1 hour
Get A+ help
with any paper

According to my perception, the second image which shows a cooperative work environment comprising of people from diverse cultural background is an important aspect of enhancing the motivation level of the employees. This type of organisational practice ensures providing equal opportunities to each of the employees and does not involve any form of biased attitude towards any of the subordinates. According to me, the most relevant strength of this organisational practice is that since each individual is provided with equal opportunity, the employees are motivated to exhibit high work standards. It directly influences the degree of goal accomplishment of the organisations to a significant level (Robbins, 2009). One of the primary weaknesses associated with this aspect of organisational management is that employees often have a negative attitude towards working with people from different cultural backgrounds and ethnicity. Employees belonging from same cultural group form group amongst themselves due to the development of feeling that the organisation is giving high preference to the other cultural group.

I have developed a notion from the third image that the organisation is trying to motivate its employees by giving the same level of scope and opportunity to all the employees. I believe through this motivation approach that the organisation is trying to encourage all employees to showcase their talent and skills in important decisions. Organisational success is highly dependent on the diverse skill set and competencies of the employees (Robbins, 2009). Therefore, the primary strength of this aspect lies in the fact that it enhances the overall organisational performance. On development of feeling that the organisations value the skills and competencies possessed by the employees and give adequate assistance in enhancing them is indeed considered as a primary factor of motivation. The pictorial representation also depicts the perceived weakness of this organisational management approach.  According to me, although the employees are motivated enough to use their diverse skill set to organisational success, they often develop a feeling that there is no need to enhance their existing knowledge set and competencies. I believe this feeling among the employees will result in the organisation to fail miserably in accomplishing its objectives effectively.


Motivation is perceived as a significant factor of influencing the behavioural aspect of the organisation. Since motivation is concerned with the degree by which human behaviour is influenced to exhibit high performance standards, it can be used to develop a causal relationship between motives and behaviour. Surrogate of motivation indicates that there exists an increasing misbalance in the work life and personal life of employees in an organization and it is caused due to higher rate of segmentation and fragmentation in contemporary workplace. The factors of inequality, sociological dimensions of power, resistance and organisational managerial control play an important role in determining the level to which employees can be motivated through the humanisation factor of the surrogate of motivation.

Did you like this sample?
  1. Ford, J.D., Ford, L.W. and D’Amelio, A., 2008. Resistance to change: the rest of the story. Academy of management Review, 33(2), pp.362-377.
  2. Gilley, A., Gilley, J.W. and McMillan, H.S., 2009. Organizational change: motivation, communication, and leadership effectiveness. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 21(4), pp.75-94.
  3. Robbins, S.P., 2009. Organizational behavior. New Delhi: Pearson Education India.
  4. Sievers, B., 1986. Beyond the surrogate of motivation. Organization Studies, 7(4), pp.335-351.
  5. Sievers, B., 1994. Work, death, and life itself: essays on management and organization. Boston: Walter de Gruyter.
  6. Sussman, H., 2007. Idylls of the wanderer: outside in literature and theory. Fordham: Fordham Univ Press.
Related topics
More samples
Related Essays