I am trying to do research on how to motivate employees during peak business periods in a restaurant setting?


I work for Panera Bread and am always looking for ways to motivate employees to meet our service goals of 5 minutes or less per customer. This information is for an integrative paper I am doing for an Organizational Behavior class. Also I have two other sections, which I am doing on better communication among managers and instilling Panera culture. Could use some help on how to best research those topics.

Answered By: Linda Kern
Last Updated: Dec 12, 2016     Views: 34


Let's take these questions one by one.

First, the question of employee motivation and organizational goals. I would begin with the Organizational Leadership LibGuide. You will be asked for your 6 digit student ID number and your user name, for example, jsmith1, to log in. Once there, choose the Resources for OL tab and then select ABI/Inform Complete. I would start with "employee attitude" AND "job performance". Use the exact search, as the quotation marks and the "AND" will return a more relevant set of results. Limit the results to the last 10 years, and look for peer reviewed and trade publications. The left-side tool bar will provide the limiters. I know you're looking at motivation, but attitude plays a big role in motivation, so I started here.

This search yielded possibilities including Parker, S. K. (2007). 'That is my job': How employees' role orientation affects their job performance. Human Relations, 60(3), 403-434. From the abstract: "...role orientation predicted performance more strongly than other work attitudes, including job satisfaction, generalized self-efficacy, locus of control, and job aspiration. Collectively, the findings suggest that the development of a more flexible role orientation represents a relatively unexplored avenue for enhancing employee performance." In other words, if a manager can motivate an employee to change the attitude of "That's not my job", performance will increase.

You can add relevant words to the search to further limit the results, for example, "employee attitude" AND "job performance" AND motivation. 

Another approach is to change up the wording. The search "employee motivation" AND "performance management" yielded only a few results when limited to the last 10 years, but among them were Nohria, N., Groysberg, B., & Lee, L. (2008, Jul). Employee motivation: A powerful new model. Harvard Business Review, 86, 78-84. and Bishop, M. (2013). How can I boost employee performance? Strategic HR Review, 12(2), 94-95.

If you don't find what you want in ABI/Inform, go back to the OL LibGuide and switch to Business Source Complete. Although there is a little overlap between the two databases, there is a lot of unique content in each.

On the the question about communication *among* managers... As before, I would start with ABI/Inform Complete. Try searching "managerial communication". Use the quotation marks to increase the relevance of your results. Limit the results to the last 10 years, and again, focus on scholarly and trade publications. Among the results are Ahmed, Z., Shields, F., White, R., & Wilbert, J. (2010). Managerial communication: The link between frontline leadership and organizational performance. Journal of Organizational Culture, Communication and Conflict, 14(1), 107-120. and Malbasic, I., & Brcic, R. (2012). Organizational values in managerial communication. Management: Journal of Contemporary Management Issues, 17(2), 99-118. Also of interest might be Dasgupta, S. A., Suar, D., & Singh, S. (2013). Impact of managerial communication styles on employees' attitudes and behaviours. Employee Relations, 35(2), 173-199. doi:10.1108/01425451311287862

Last, regarding the Panera culture, try instill corporate culture. This time there are no quotation marks, broadening the search a bit. Also try instill service culture. Another approach would be  instill corporate values or instill core values. You could exchange core values for a specific value, such as "customer service".

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