We wanted to find out, not just what is important to you, but also how happy you are with those factors which motivate you the most. For all responders the value of the motivating factors1 were as shown in the table with a rather smooth progression from salary, the number one driver, to the share scheme, which make virtually a zero impact. The numbers refer to the percentage for each factor of the total score and there are no surprises here.
Responders were then asked to provide a satisfaction level, from +2 for very satisfied to –2 for very dissatisfied, for each of the motivating factors and the results were as shown. The car policy, salary and share scheme did particularly badly, but the only factor which showed an overall unsatisfied result was the bonus.
To give these raw numbers a bit more meaning we show on the right the result of multiplying the motivation by the satisfaction, to produce what we might call a happiness factor. Being very satisfied with a highly motivating factor is more pleasing than being equally satisfied with something which is not rated as important. The happiness analysis appears to tell us that, above all else, you are delighted by the relationship you have with your manager and by your ability to believe in the products you sell. All other factors fade in comparison. In particular the warmth felt from having a company car, your appraisal system and the share scheme is almost non-existent, the bonus scheme really ticks you off. Moreover even the size of your salary and the prospect of a pension appear to mean little.
To see how this pattern of motivation, satisfaction and happiness changes with age, we have set out the motivation factors by age, using the five age ranges employed in the survey.
Although some of the factors are pretty constant, there are clearly others that vary significantly. To prevent cluttering we have only plotted the more interesting changes. It shows us that, with age, the motivating value of salary the prospect of personal development and even the bonus, take a nosedive whereas the level of autonomy and the pension grow in importance.
There are some equally dramatic changes in the satisfaction levels and again we have only plotted the most variable ones
|KEY: Belief = Belief in present products sold Manager = Relationship with your manager Car = Car policy Security = Job security Shares = Share scheme Appraisals = Structured appraisal systems Autonomy = Autonomy in role Development = Personal development Recognition = Recognition of your success Pension = Pension Scheme Accountability = Individual Accountability for Sales
The overall impression is that the excesses become ironed out as youth fades and you become more satisfied with the car, bonus scheme, and share scheme. Even the salary level becomes less of a problem. You perhaps take a more realistic approach to your company culture and your accountability and autonomy.
But the ultimate measure is how happy you feel as you get older. Once again by multiplying motivation by satisfaction we get the following age dependency of the happiness factor and again we have plotted the more interesting variations.
Product belief is what keeps the more senior members going, and it remains as high as ever, as the importance of the relationship with the manager drops off somewhat. The benefits of autonomy really soar and the recognition of success and the existence of extra responsibilities become significant. The factors that cease to please are company culture and the opportunities for personal development. Also with age, the really practical matters like salary; bonus, pension and the car policy make you happier than they did when you were young.
But what about sex I hear you cry
The following two tables give male-female comparisons for motivation and happiness. As shown, males are much more focused on their salary, whereas females are more motivated than males by product belief, the relationship with their manager, and the prospects for personal development, and are far less concerned with the car policy. This is despite a significant gap in the levels of bonus awarded to males and females, with the male median bonus for GP reps being £2,000 compared to £1,750 for females. In hospital the comparison is £4,500 to £3,000.
When this translates to happiness females are more content with the manager relationship, product belief, recognition of their success, job security, personal development, much happier with their salaries the car policy and they are made less unhappy about their bonuses. You may say “That is exactly what you would have expected.” In the age-related trends and the male-female differences there are no real surprises. However, there are some subtle messages that emerge to provide managers with potential actions for improving their staff contentment still further.
What is surprising, especially in comparison with other sectors, is the general high level of overall satisfaction in the industry. Imagine the results that would emerge from a similar exercise with schoolteachers about to have a visit from Ofsted or NHS staff after the umpteenth reform. So no doubt you will carrying on loving your manager! If that bond were to go, life would be less worthwhile. But if it did fade you could transfer some of your affection to your bonus or perhaps realise that you are really more pleased with your pay packet than you are prepared to admit. In fact only 2.8% of you are considering leaving the industry in the next 12 months.