The study investigates the effect of motivation on employees’ performance in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions with emphasis on some selected tertiary institutions in Katsina State. There were series of crisis in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions that involves Management of the Institutions and their owners (Federal, State and Private Investors), Employees- Management crisis, Labour Union and Management among many others. Other issues include periodic voluntary retirement of employees, movement of staff to blue-chip Companies and lucrative Government Agencies, downfall in education in the country among many other challenges are the factor leading to the under taking of this study. The research is aim to examine the effect of Intrinsic, Extrinsic and job motivation on employee performance. Six hypotheses were raised and tested in the study and the results showed that there was relationship between intrinsic motivation and Job performance of staff in the tertiary institutions of Katsina State with r=0.496 and p=0.000. Survey research design was employed. However, Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Federal University Dutsin-ma, Al-qalam University, Katsina, Isa Kaita College of Education, Dutsin-ma and Ummaru Musa Yar’adua University, Katsina with staff populations of 612, 1180, 330, 467 and 1048 respectively was selected as study area of the study which had total of 3637staff population out of which 381 sample size was selected at random for the study. SPSS and Smart PLS 3 inferential statistical softwares were used in analysing data collected. However, from the analysis, it was discovered that coefficient determination (R-square) is showing 73%; meaning that, the independent variable are able to influence the Dependent variable of to 73% and intrinsic, extrinsic and job motivation are significantly influencing employees performance. The research recommends the need for tertiary institutions in the Katsina State to pursue extrinsic motivation in terms of welfare package and other extrinsic benefits, especially issues of training and development vigorously for desirable performance.




1.1     Introduction

Tertiary institutions are created for the purpose of attaining specific goals. Thus, each institution’s resources, including human and non-human are budgeted, directed, co-ordinate and controlled towards the attainment of set down goals of the institution. However, special attention must be given to the human resources of the institutions which include the academic and non-academic staff who responsible for the effective and efficient management of the institutions. That is why adequate measures must be taken towards motivating the entire staff of tertiary institutions.

Motivation is thus a means of acknowledging and understanding of the needs, wants, feelings, ideals of employee by boosting their abilities and knowledge in their work. Though financial benefit or non financial nature. Human beings are differ in nature, differ from the way they think, which has always becomes difficult for management to choose the best motivational method that suits each employees.

It should be noted that, man does not delight in cake alone, they sometimes need a little pushing and pulling to help either their performance. Because man attaches much importance to their jobs as a source of substance, they could adhere to strict instructions, but these should not be used as a means of manipulating or victimizing them, because this could end up making them act contrary to expectation.

It is important to stress at this point that if adequate measures are taken towards motivating staff in tertiary institutions by the management, there will be corresponding increase in productivity and efficiency, (Aminu, 2012). This chapter discussed introductory background to the study titled ‘Effect of Motivation on Employee Performance in Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria’.

1.2     Background to the Study

The success of any business or organisation as a matter of fact depends largely on the motivation of the employees. Human resources are essential to the prosperity, productivity and performance of any organisation whether public or private. Motivation is the key to creating an enabling environment where optimal performance is possible. This leads to the question of how do we ensure that the individual motivation is at its peak within the organisation or workplace? Chapman, (2004).

Every employee or worker has his or her own set of motivations and personal incentives that ginger him or her to work hard or not as the case may be. Some are motivated by recognition whilst others are motivated by cash incentives. Whatever, the form of employee motivation, the key to promoting that motivation as an employer, is understanding and incentives Coy, (2000).

Employee incentive programmes go a long way towards ensuring employees feel appreciated cared for and deemed worthwhile. This can go a long way to help with employee motivation across the board. The greatest thing about motivation is that it is individualized as such programs are tailored to suit the needs and wants of employees. Motivation does not only encourage productive performance but also show employees how much the company cares. Perhaps the most vital impact of employee motivation is that of increased productivity or performance.

This according to literature on the subject is the central aim of adopting employee motivational programmes thus, if you can increase employee motivation, productivity inevitably will follow suit Ryan, (2011).

Employee motivation promotes workplace harmony and increased employee performance. It is the key to long term benefits for the company. Motivated employees means staff retention and company loyalty, which in the short run will give birth to growth and development of business Jishi, (2009).

Tertiary intuitions the world over, have the prime objectives of impacting knowledge through teaching, research and community services. To effectively deliver on these objectives, qualified and competent workforces are required. However, the performance of academic and non- academic staff is not only a function of ability (qualification and competence) but also of motivation, Jishi, (2009).

Ngu (1998) contends that the two most important variables explaining employee performance are motivation and ability. He defines motivation as the enthusiasm and persistence with which a person does a task, while ability refers to task competence. Impliedly therefore, academic staff can only reach peak performance if they are adequately motivated assuming that the issue of competence is taken as given.

Effective job performance by the academic and non-academic staff can lead to the realization of the broad objectives for which universities, polytechnics and other tertiary institutions are established, namely knowledge delivery, research and community services affirms that good performance in higher education will lead to positive growth. For example, effective knowledge delivery will facilitate skill acquisition and entrepreneurship development which will bring about poverty reduction especially in developing countries one of which is Nigeria (Blanchard, 2004).

Abundant research output will expand the frontiers of knowledge and accelerate social, economic, artistic, scientific and technological development in every society.

 Abdulkareem and Oyeniran (2011) corroborate that, polytechnics are established to serve as centres of technological and scientific advancement, skills development, production of quality entrepreneurial graduates, and strategic researches and development strategies.

In the nutshell, the above submission shows that employee motivation is very essential to the growth, development and success of any organisation, tertiary institutions inclusive and this leads to the emergence of this study ‘Effect of Motivation on Employee Performance in Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria’ to examine the effect of motivation on employee performance through the following variables: Motivation, Intrinsic reward, Extrinsic reward, Feedback and Performance.

1.3     Statement of the Problem

The employee’s motivation is a key factor towards job performance and services delivery in any organization or institution. Motivation has been a hallmark of productivity and job performance in every organization. This situation has been a stumbling block towards provision of services by employees in Nigeria Tertiary Institutions. By identifying this, several measures have been taken by the government to improve motivation to her employees such as training opportunities, seminars, salary increment as well as incentives like housing and transport allowances. An organization that wishes to attain high productivity must be an organization whose workers, both skilled and unskilled are willing to exert high levels of effort in achieving goals set by the organization Adeyemi, (2014), Agani, (2012), Gimba, (2013), Agarwal, (2015), Muburu, (2016), Uhuru, (2012) and Kofi, (2016).

Manpower constitutes a bottle neck to most organization especially educational institutions because they are seen as life wire of any economy. Without motivated staff in tertiary institutions, half baked graduate and an unmotivated manpower would be turned into the economy year in year out. Baring this in mind there is a need for capable hands to be on deck but this has been neglected over the year Wasil, (2015).

Staff in such institutions feel they are note motivated to put in their bet because their basic needs of food shelter, clothing and safety is neglected, thus, in order to meet up these needs, they turn to other businesses and sadly neglect their official work. The appraisal system does not help matters because no one takes the point to find out if the students are contented with the level of teaching or if they understand such teachers at all and whether services offered by Non-academic staff is inconformity with the standard and work ethics in terms of keeping students records, admission processes, handling staff promotion issues and welfare among many other issues Hassan, (2010), Aminu, (2014), Aminu and Ahmed, (2016), Hindo and Moses, (2011).

Furthermore, constant rise in inflation makes it so difficult for staff to meet up the needs of their families. This is why level of education is gradually dropping because the staff do not have the time for research and lesson notes and even if they do they produce it in form of “Hand outs” which they expect students to buy so that they can generate funds.

It is universally believed that when employees are sufficiently motivated it leads to higher productivity and efficiency. Thus, the Government at State and Federal level are not in agreement with various union groups like ASUU (Academic Staff Union of Universities), SSANU (Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities), NASU (Non Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions), ASUP (Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics) and NAAT (National Association of Academic Technologist) enter into agreement of making available funds to all the tertiary institution Tukur, (2014).

However, the expected agitation of 2009 by the various unions in tertiary institutions for improve salary package for staff, provision for training of staff, improve learning facilities, adequate laboratory and equipped library have not really achieved its objective. These problems among many others may be due to inadequate motivation by the government or rather Board of Governing Council and if not addressed half backed graduates would keep on flooding the employment market Tukur, (2014).

Furthermore, Several studies on motivation and job performance in Nigeria attempt to focus on typical organization like manufacturing sector, banking industry, construction industry and local government but few studies was conducted on academic staff members of higher education institutions and few were combining both academic and non-academic staff of tertiary institutions; this constitute a knowledge gap that this study intends to fill (Tukur, 2014). 

1.4     Research Questions

  1. What extent does Motivation enhances employee performance?
  2. How does Intrinsic and Extrinsic rewards influence employee performance?
  3. To what extent does feedback influence motivation and performance appraisal on staff?
  4. Does Male and Female staff of tertiary institutions differ in their Job motivation?
  5. In what way does Male and Female non-teaching staff differ in their job performance?
  6. To what extent that motivation techniques use by tertiary institutions facilitate employee performance?

1.5     Research Questions

The main objective of this study is to examine the effect of Motivation on Employee Performance in Tertiary Institutions in Nigeria. But specifically, the research intends to achieve the following specific objectives:

  1. To examine the effect of Motivation on employee performance.
  2. To find out the effect of Intrinsic and Extrinsic rewards on employee performance.
  3. To find out the effect of feedback on motivation and performance appraisal on staff .
  4. To determine Job motivator of Male and Female staff of tertiary institutions.
  5. To ascertain difference between job performance of Male and Female staff of tertiary institutions.
  6. To identify motivation techniques use by tertiary institutions in order to facilitate employee performance.

1.6     Significance of the Study

The findings from this study will be beneficial not only to the employees of Tertiary institutions in Katsina state but also the entire Tertiary Institutions in the country as a whole hence motivation issues in Nigerian tertiary institutions is a matter of concern among the institutions, Educational Policy makers and Regulatory bodies alike. However, the study will be useful at three levels thus, the individual level, institutional level and national level.

  1. At the individual level, the workers of the institution will be informed as to the incentive programmes available to them and how best to utilize them for personal development and performance improvement.
  2. At the institutional level, it will help the Polytechnic to change or review their employee motivational policies and strategies in vogue which will inevitably cause an increase in staff turnover or productivity which will also lead to growth and eventually development. The study would also be significant to tertiary institution management because it would serve as a useful guide to Institutions managers on how to improve or increase performance and productivity of employees through various motivation factors.

  Secondly, findings of the research will enable relevant labour unions such as Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Senior Staff Union of Tertiary Institutions (SSUTIs), Non-academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (NASUP) and others to be acquainted with various motivational tools and packages to be made available by these Institutions for their welfare.

  1. At the national level, critical issues of motivation are of national concern due to numbers of cases of performance decay, downfall of education, lack of employability capabilities among tertiary institutions leavers among others. This study will be useful to Nigerian tertiary education regulatory bodies such as National University Commission (NUC), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) and National Commission for College of Education (NCCE) to ascertain various motivation tools that can motive employees under their jurisdictions and formulate special favourable policies that will geared towards enhance tertiary institutions’ employees motivation for better performance and quality tertiary education.

It will also bridge the gap between a similar research done before this one some years back, so that it or be updated.

1.7     Statement of the Hypothesis

  1. H1: Motivation has no significance relationship with employee performance.
  2. H2: Intrinsic and Extrinsic rewards have no significance relationship with employee performance.
  3. H3: Feedback, motivation and performance appraisal have no significance relationship with staff.
  4. H4: Job motivators of Male and Female staff of tertiary institutions have no significance relationship with their performance.
  5. H5: There is no significance relationship between job performances of Male with Female staff of tertiary institutions.
  6. H6: Motivation techniques use by tertiary institutions does not significantly facilitate employee performance.

1.8     Justification of the Study

There were series of crisis in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions and Tertiary Institutions of Katsina State in particular that involves Management of the Institutions and their owners (Federal, State and Private Investors), Employees- Management crisis, Labour Union and Management among many others. Other issues include periodic voluntary retirement of employees, movement of staff to blue-chip Companies and lucrative Government Agencies, poor number of real research among academic staff of these Institutions, downfall in education among many other challenges are the factor leading to the under taking of this study.

However, the researcher selects Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Katsina because of the researcher’s knowledge of the environment and the school is also the pioneer Tertiary Institution in Katsina State as one of the case study areas plus three other tertiary institutions of the state.

1.9      Scope of the Study

This study targeted employees of tertiary Institution in Nigeria. However, Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Katsina, Ummaru Musa Yar’adua University, Federal University, Dutsin-ma, Isa Kaita College of Education, Dutsin-ma and Al-qalam University, Katsina were chosen as case study areas due to peculiarities with motivation issues of Tertiary Institutions especially on Salary Package. However, the study contents are scoped on the seven variables of the study comprising six independent variable proxies and one dependent variable as follows: Motivation, Intrinsic reward, extrinsic reward, Feedback, and Performance.

1.10     Definition of Terms

  1. Motivation: Motivation is thus a means of acknowledging and understanding of the needs, wants, feelings, ideals of employee by boosting their full abilities and knowledge in their work.
  2. Performance: The accomplishment of a given task measured against preset known standards of accuracy, completeness, cost, and speed. In a contract, performance is deemed to be the fulfilment of an obligation, in a manner that releases the performer from all liabilities under the contract.
  3. Employee performance: refers to working in terms of quantity and quality expected from each staff of tertiary institutions of Katsina State.
  4. Tertiary Institutions: is refers to as organized formal institution that engage in offering third stage, third level, and post-secondary education, is the educational level following the completion of a school providing a secondary education.


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