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1.1 Background to the Study

Human resource is the livewire of any organization. Its effective management is therefore very crucial and central in the achievement of organizational objective. One of the important responsibilities of every organization is making great use of every facility in disposal in order to gain the planned purposes and meanwhile the human resources play an important role (Schll, 2006). In today’s competitive world, human resources guarantee the maintenance and survival every organization (Honari, 2006).

Managers fulfil their organizational goals through the work of employees. Thus, managers need to have highly efficient and productive staff members. Although many factors contribute to productivity, job performance is viewed to be the most influential one. Job performance itself is a function of four variables: ability, understanding of the task, environment, and motivation (Mitchell, 2008). Accordingly, in order to perform well employees need to have the knowledge and tools that are required for the job as well as the will to do what is required from them. Over the years the Nigerian public sector has continued to render poor quality services to the citizens mainly as a result of low performance of workers in the sector. Poor performance in the Nigeria public sector

manifest in poor planning, ineffective implementation of policies, poor public service delivery, abandoned projects, delays in plan implementation, shortage of basic amenities, and lack of accountability (Unanka, 2009). A walk into any government office on any typical day will reveal a largely lethargically slothful public service where workers are lazy, hawk wares, chatter about or sleep and snore on desks (Davidson, 2008)

To curb the problems, various Nigerian governments at different periods introduced different measures including reform programmes aimed at motivating and improving the performance of workers in the public sector. Most of these reforms dwelt on motivational factors such as salary reviews, training, participative management, democratic leadership styles, and clinical approach to supervision and welfare facilities (Ogunna, 1999). Motivation is a by-product of many factors. These factors could either be internally or externally galvanized, depending on the disposition of the individual and prevailing circumstances at any given time. In the present Nigerian situation, the economic rate of activities and the subsequent high inflation rate have made money a relatively high motivating factor (Ubong, 2009).

The limited number of salary reviews in the Nigerian public sector, the inappropriateness of training programmes, as well as the inadequate access to housing and medical facilities cum low prospects of promotion has brought about a situation where there have been persistent expressions of dissatisfaction among public sector workers. These workers include staffs of the Nigeria communications commission who are also part of the public sector. Low performance in most cases is a by-product of dissatisfaction, which could manifest itself in various ways. Some of these ways include indiscipline and general apathy. To contain these traits it is important to assess the impact of motivation on workers’ performance as what constitute needs and satisfaction varies across individuals and organizations.

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