Effects of Motivation on Staff Turnover

A Case of Teachers in Private Schools in Busia Municipality, Kenya

Master's Thesis, 2015

49 Pages









1.0 Introduction
1.1 Background of the study
1.3 Statement of the Problem
1.4 Purpose of the Study
1.5 Objectives of the Study
1.5.1 General Objectives of the Study
1.5.2 Specific Objectives
1.6 Research Question
1.7 Significance of the Study
1.8 Scope of the Study
1.9 Limitation of the Study
1.10 Assumptions of the Study
1.11. Conceptual Frame Work

2.1 Introduction
2.2 Theoretical Frame Work
2.2.1 Herzberg Motivational Theory
2.2.2 Maslow hierarchy of Needs Theory
2.3 Teacher Motivation
2.3.1 Monetary Incentives that Affect Motivation
2.3.2 Non-Monetary Incentives That Affect Motivation
2.3.3 Interpersonal Relationships
2.6 Knowledge Gap

3.1 Introduction
3.2 Research Design
3.3 Site of the Study
3.4 Target population
3.5 Sampling Techniques and Design
3.6 Sample Size
3.6.1 Sampling Frame
3.7 Data collection methods and procedures
3.8 Tools of Data Collection
3.9 Pilot Study
3.10 Data analysis techniques
3.11 Ethical Issues




Figure 1: Conceptual framework


Table 3.1 Target Population

Table 3.1 Sample size for Directors and Teachers of Private schools


I thank God for giving me breathe of life to sail through my studies from primary to post graduate studies. My great and deep felt thanks go to my tiresome supervisor Dr Bichanga Walter who brought me from a tender research armature to completion a long side Simon Obwatho who never got tired of assisting me, I thank Professor Koi for laying my research foundation when she took me and my colleagues through theoretical work. My appreciation goes to my fellow MBA students who I will stand to remember for valued advice and assistance. I thank the entire educational institutions namely Asinge Primary, Mundika High School, Highridge Teachers Training College, Kenyatta University and Africa Nazarene University for making me a proud and marketable academician of international repute without them I would be nothing. My staff mates thank you for helping me in various ways, praying for me and encouraging me to keep on working hard despite challenges and indeed today we stand to reap what I sow


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Extrinsic Motivation: Motivation aroused by stimuli outside the individual (Ngaroga, 2000, Child, 1986, Mutie, 2002)

Intrinsic Motivation: Motivation aroused by stimuli within an individual (Ngaroga, 2000, Child, 1986, Chaulan, 1978)

Motivation: Is that condition which causes or encourages us to act in a certain way. It is broad term that encompasses, needs, drives, motivates, edges purposes (Ngaroga, 2000, Child, 1986, Mutie, 2002).

Teacher: a person, whose job is to teach especially a school or college (Oxford University Press, 2006; Castle, 1965; Brown, 1975).

Turnover: Refers to proportion of employees who leave the organization over a set period. Often on a year on basis which is expressed as a percentage of the total work force (Ngaroga, 2000).


The purpose of this project is to look at the effects of motivation on staff turnover a case of teachers in private schools in Busia municipality. The statement of the problem is, since motivation leads to attainment of goals, teachers need to be effectively motivated by the management so that they work towards the achievement of the institution’s objectives of offering quality education to produce good results to enable the learners move from primary to secondary. This will sustain the school as a business organization whose major aim is to make profit. The general objective is to look at the effects of motivation on staff turnover. We shall look at three main specific objectives; effect of monetary incentives on teacher motivation which is the main source of basic needs; effects of non-monetary incentives on motivation highlighting how non-monetary rewards like participative decision making, autonomy to the job, organizational practices, and recognition can motivate a teacher to work hard towards achievement of organizational objectives; and the effect of interpersonal relationships on motivation of teachers. The respondents are the directors and teachers of private schools in Busia municipality. The directors are the employers and the teacher’s employees. The variables involved are motivation as independent variable and turnover dependent variable. The knowledge gap is to find the motivators favorable for individual teachers to curb rampant turnover especially in third term when national exams are due. The research design that shall be used is the descriptive design as it gives room for both quantitative and qualitative data to be collected. The target population shall be all the fifteen schools from which 15 directors and 150 teachers will be covered making in total of 165 respondents in the municipality. The sample size will be restricted to 15 directors and 150 teachers bringing a total of 165 respondents ideal to give valid information. The data collection tools will be questionnaires which will be distributed to all the directors based on census and150 teachers who will be purposively sampled from all the private schools within the Busia muniscipality. Then the questionnaires will be analyzed and presented in tables and graphs of which the summary, conclusions and recommendations for further research will be made.


1.0 Introduction

Among the main challenges facing private institutions in Kenya is improvement of the efficiency of the education in the face of limited human capital and material resources for the education at their disposal. Abdo (2000) argues sub-standard individuals joining teaching profession, high teacher turnover and low teacher morale and the quality of teacher work life has resulted poor quality in education provision in third world countries. While many factors have been identified as cause of poor performance in the education sector in private schools the problem is mainly due to unsatisfactory or variable teacher performance and commitment (Gary, 2007). According to Daniel (2007) teacher motivation and work commitment are vital factors affecting learning institutions effectiveness.

The quality of school education relies upon the professionalism and dedication of teacher employees (Cole, 1990). Risking the education efficiency are reduced teacher morale and increasing turnover both pointing out low teacher motivation and job under satisfaction (Kenneth, 2007). Poor teacher morale leads to absenteeism, laxity and inadequate attendance of classroom duties. The present study looks at the effect of motivation on staff turnover among private schools in Busia municipality. Key to this study is to look at the monetary motivators, non-monetary motivators that will help private institutions and policy makers in tackling issues of motivation and retention.

1.1 Background of the study

Employee turnover leaves workers teachers inclusive to revolve within the labour market, in firms or schools to some extent in changing occupations to others between countries for employment and unemployment (Abassi & Hollaman, 2000). According to (Cole,1990; Cole 2000; Torrington, 2001) They vividly suggests that local unemployment rates has an immediate interaction with jobs whether teaching or not that satisfy action to predict teacher turnover in the market.

Role related stressors can spark employee turnover in case of role ambiguity, which is the differences between performance anticipation on the job against what we should always be doing, causing unpredictable daily over role job performance. What is expected, the employee thinking job should be different and how to meet the expectation. Deficient information on how to perform the teaching job adequately, ambiguity of performances, unclear expectations of peer and supervisors like the directors and headteachers, lack of consensus on job functions, extensive pressures may cause teachers to feel less committed to their schools getting a driving force to leave the school. Therefore, the roles of teachers should be clearly spelt by the management and supervisors to avoid them from quitting their job from simply lack of role clarity (Mbiti, 2007).

In the USA teacher scarcity is as a result of turnover, which is eminent in many States (Ingersoll, 2002). In South Africa the mass exodus or movement of teachers being recruited are said to be leaving the profession for greener financial pastures in countries like Britain (Simpson, 2002). It is unlikely that dispirited, under motivated and dissatisfied teachers will be effective and committed instructors for a long period of time (Rodgers et al, 1990).Turnover has been observed to be the order of the day in some schools. The quality of teaching is hurt by the loss of these experienced teachers and raises the costs of recruiting and training new teachers (Rodgers, 1990).

Teachers are prone to loss of motivation and leveling of performance as they spend years in the same job (Torrington, 1993). Connolly (2000) supports by saying that teacher job satisfaction begins to reduce some time during the third year when it occurs to them that they have little autonomy and are not really decision makers in their institutions. Mbiti (2007) said that Kenyan teachers dysfunctional schools had zero dedication and motivation to their work efficiently thus were prompted not to help school managers with student disciplinary problems, had turned to habitual latecomers and absentees. Mbiti (2007) argued that job dissatisfaction occurs in teaching and that more is needed to point out factors affecting motivation and job satisfaction of teachers. Busia municipality private schools have faced exodus of teachers this records are found within individual schools and Teacher Service Commission unit Busia (TSC Busia, 2012). The effect of teacher motivation in private schools in Busia municipality thus calls for research to reduce turnover and promote retention.

1.3 Statement of the Problem

Conventionally among the organizational or institutional theorists manpower is one of the most important assets of a school because things are getting done through teachers. In other words, the success of a school in realizing its objectives heavily depends on the performance of its teachers. Therefore, the focus on the factors influencing teacher performance is critical. Performance is considered to be related with the concepts of ability the teacher has, opportunity and motivation (Latham, 2004). Ability is a function skills, education, experience and training. Opportunity can mean infrastructure needed to perform a teaching job. Finally, the open desire to achieve goal and willingness to exert more effort for it explains motivation or the drive to do something. Motivation is something that can lead to better teaching performance when other conditions are met. But, it has a greater advantage over others in the sense that while the opportunity and ability tend to be stable and difficult to change for the teaching force, motivation has the tendency of flexibility, that is, it can be changed by some means. Moreover, it is apparent that in the absence of willingness to perform; capacity and opportunity will not generate the desired results. To be effective and efficient in their functioning, in other factors, all schools, whether public or private, need motivated teachers (Nickels, 2005). Among the vital input to school success are teachers motivated to work energetically and creatively toward the accomplishment of organizational goals.

Consequently, the challenge for organizations is to ensure that their staff is highly motivated. When the issue is motivation, one of the first and vital things that comes to ones mind is the concept of incentive, which sincerely refers to any means that makes an teachers desire to do better, try harder and expend more energy (Florence, 2000). With regard to monetary incentives, it can be argued that private organizations have more financial sources to motivate their teachers than the public schools.

Moreover, while many private schools have monetary incentives such as declared bonuses, commissions, cash rewards, providing such incentives in adequate levels in a weak economy for starting or unstable schools it is quite a challenge. As a result, alternative teacher motivation means in the private schools is important. In line with this purpose, this study focuses on the use of monetary and non-monetary incentives as motivational tool and their effectiveness in the motivation of private school teachers (Taylor, 2000 and Nickels, 2005). Non-monetary or non-cash incentives do not involve direct payment of cash and they can be tangible or intangible. This kind of incentives include; encouraging the staff or teachers by providing them with autonomy in their teaching job and participation in decision making, assigning challenging duties, improving working conditions, gifts rewards, letters of appreciation, plagues, tickets to restaurant, providing some services for the employees, organizing social activities in the work place, for example Starting with Elton Mayo and Human Relations School, it is emphasized that the need for recognition, self-respect, growth, meaningful work, social activities are as important as monetary incentives in increasing the employees’ morale and motivation(Nickels, 2005). There are many contemporary research studies supporting the effectiveness of monetary and non-monetary incentives as a motivating tool in the private organizations such as Elton ,Maslow’s and Herzberg (Taylor, 2000; Cole 2000). However, hardly any study regarding its use private schools in Busia municipality is evident. This study will try to shed light on this issue and explore the effect of motivation on teachers in private schools in Busia municipality

1.4 Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study will be to investigate the effects of motivation on staff turnover in private schools in Busia municipality, of Busia County.

1.5 Objectives of the Study

This section will cover two types of objectives. The general objectives and the specific objectives the general objectives take long to achieve while specific objectives take a shorter time to achieve.

1.5.1 General Objectives of the Study

The general objective of this study will be to determine effects of motivation on staff turnover in private primary schools in Busia municipality.

1.5.2 Specific Objectives

The specific objectives will be to:-

i. To find out the effects of monetary incentives on teacher motivation in schools
ii. To examine the effects of non-monetary incentives on teacher motivation
iii. To explore the effects of interpersonal relationships on motivation

1.6 Research Question

The following research questions were formulated from the aforementioned specific objectives:-

i. Do monetary incentives improve teacher motivation?
ii. Do non-monetary incentives enhance teacher motivation?
iii. Can inter personal relationships affect teacher motivation?

1.7 Significance of the Study

Hopefully the findings of this study would be used by the school directors in their adoption of participatory approaches in their administration with a view to retain and motivate employees. Teamwork and employees motivation is encouraged by participatory leadership. It builds teamwork and morale. The study is significant in that it is looking at the effect of motivation on staff turnover of teachers in private schools which will contribute towards filling the knowledge gap. The government may use the findings in making their policies concerning how to hire and retain competitive employees. Coming up with ways of retaining and motivating employees may call for knowledge of causes of staff turnover and its effect on motivation; the document thus provides insight into this. Multinational corporations may also use the findings in reducing and eliminating staff turnover which has a direct bearing on employee motivation.

1.8 Scope of the Study

Directors of private primary schools who are employers and the owners of schools who hire and pay teachers; will be involved in the scope of this study. The study will ensure that the directors are informed on how lack of motivation may cause negative turnover of staff in their schools. Teachers in private schools who are the employees and directly affected by turnover and motivation will also be covered. The research shall be conducted in all the fifteen private schools in Busia municipality.

1.9 Limitation of the Study

The research may encounter limitations in the respondents being reluctant to disclose the true position of the situation in their schools due to fear of breaking the laid down organizational policies but the researcher will assure them of confidentiality and his ethical obligations in conducting the research, he will guarantee them that the research is purely for academic purposes. Wrong responses may be provided by dishonest respondents in order to deliberately influence the findings of this study. This will be tackled by encouraging honesty by explaining to them the purpose of the study. Some respondents may have a negative attitude towards research due to ignorance. The respondents will be encouraged that the research is being carried out for purposes of academic work and shall not be used for any other purposes without their consent or authorization and that their identity shall remain confidential.

1.10 Assumptions of the Study

The following assumptions are made that the information provided by the respondents will be truthful and therefore adaptable to the research. The researcher will trust that the respondents will give full information to enable him to arrive at the necessary conclusion from the research. The assumption is that the respondents will be honest and therefore complete the questionnaire truthfully. Another assumption is that the respondents will be cooperative and will complete the questionnaires with high degree of honesty.


Excerpt out of 49 pages


Effects of Motivation on Staff Turnover
A Case of Teachers in Private Schools in Busia Municipality, Kenya
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effects, motivation, staff, turnover, case, teachers, private, schools, busia, municipality, kenya
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Romano Okwi Elingit (Author), 2015, Effects of Motivation on Staff Turnover, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/294123


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