) occur in (Rubin & Rubin, 2005).

)
In social science, research methods are an imperative part of any research
project as they define its attainment, validity, and reliability. Deriving from
a concern in a rigorous understanding of human behavior, social scientists tend
to deploy qualitative research aiming to gather an extensive account of human
behavior and beliefs within the contexts they occur in (Rubin & Rubin, 2005).
According to Cohen (2007:29) interviewing is “a variable method for exploring
the construction and negotiation of meaning in a natural setting”. Hence,
interviewing is valuable not only because it frames a holistic snapshot,
indicates detailed views of informers and dissects words, but it also empowers
interviewees to “speak in their own voice and express their own thoughts and
feelings” (Berg, 2007:96). While conducting an interview, the degree of
validity and reliability is concerned as a major factor for its “success”. In
fact, issues of validity and reliability of research tools are of great
importance for the results of any scientific research. Extensively, validity
refers to the degree to which a study reflects the scientific concepts it aims
to investigate. Two types of validity are reviewed in social science
literature: internal and external (Berg, 2007). Internal validity refers to the
extent to which an investigation is actually measuring what it is supposed to
measure, whilst external validity refers to the extent to which the results
have any real-world relevance. On the other hand, reliability refers to the
extent to which a research tool yields the same results on repeated trials. As
yet, Brewerton and Millward (2001:74) reasonably claim that interviews have
poor reliability: “…due to their openness to so many types of bias, interviews
can be notoriously unreliable, particularly when the researcher wishes to draw
comparisons between data sets”. In a similar vein, Creswell (2009:153) asserts
that interviewing reliability is “elusive” and he even adds, “No study reports
actual reliability data”. Several factors can provoke validity and reliability
issues while planning and conducting an interview. These are:

 


The Interviewee: Like any self-report method, the interview approach depends
upon interviewees being able and willing to give complete and accurate answers
to questions posed no matter what their format. Yet, interviewees may be
motivated to lie, be embarrassed to tell the truth or even incapable to answer
accurately, because they cannot recall the requested details or simply because
they do not grasp the question.  

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The order of the questions: While planning an interview, the order of
the questions should be as self-evident as possible. Often, earlier questions
set the context for later questions. Automatically, the interviewees get
predisposed towards the nature of the questions and form their answers
subsequently. 

 


In-Depth Interview: The deeper you dig to get an answer or memory, a
false information you will get, as the interviewee might try to “please” you
and conceive falsified data.


The Type of Interview: Unstructured interviews allow the interviewer to ask any
kind of question he/she wants, whether is valid or not. Contrarily, structured
interviews ensure that the answers can be reliably combined and that
comparisons can be made with assurance between different survey periods or
sample groups.

 


Leading Questions: There is bias in a question when it is phrased in
such a way that not all of the answers appear to be acceptable. Thus, a leading
question is biased, since it doesn’t keep all the alternative answers open.

 


The Interviewer Bias Effect: In the context of research, some of the
interviewees’ features may incite the interviewer to demonstrate several cues
to the interviewee, causing skewed or biased responses. A common indication of
interviewer bias effect is the “similar-to-me” effect: If both the interviewer
and interviewee are similar whether, in demographics or even education level,
they will develop a more accurate perception of the other’s self-concepts, as
the two self-concepts will be similar (Sears and Rowe, 2003).

 

To
sum up, researchers should pursue techniques that would assist preserving the
validity and reliability of an interview, such as:

 

-Conducting
a pilot interview.

 

-Taking
notes besides tape records.

 

-Giving
the interviewees an opportunity to complete the points they have made.

 

 

 

2)
In most companies these days, motivating employees to fulfill their maximum
potential is one of the key factors in modern Human Resources Management (HRM).
It is commonly believed that when an employee is motivated, he will be
generally satisfied with his job and due to that, he will be able to give his
best contribution and endeavor to the job consign to him. Even though employee
engagement and satisfaction are being increased over the past few years, there is
still a significant percentage of employees who are feeling neither motivated
nor content at their jobs.

 The present paper is going to examine the case
of a large international company, which faces problems in several
administrative departments. The problem seems to be that the employees
generally do not feel motivated at work nor experience job satisfaction. For
the purpose of that, the design of a questionnaire was proposed. Precisely, the
aim of this paper is to investigate existing theory and literature in order to
initially establish a conceptual framework of factors affecting employees’
motivation and job satisfaction. These factors could be:

 

-Unnecessary
Policies And Arbitrary Barriers: According to Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory,
company policies and administration can be the highest cause of job
dissatisfaction. Each company needs to have fair, clear and transparent
policies, which should be applied, as they are both beneficial and essential
for its function. This may require having to amend policies and eradicate all
unessential, capricious rules. Fundamentally, policies and procedures should be
infused to elucidate organizational work processes, instead of making them more
complex and time- consuming.

 


Unfair Treatment: As stated in Organizational Justice Theory (OJT),
fairness and trust are of great significance in the workplace. When employees
discern individual treatment or corporate policies as unfair or insincere, not
only they are less interested in performing tasks appropriately, but they
alienate themselves from the organization as well. Hence, it is substantial for
a company to have unambiguous and obvious policies that are communicated in a
way that makes each of the employees feel safe to emerge any apprehensions in
case they disagree with a specific regulation. Additionally, honesty and
fairness should be merits to live by in the treatment of all employees.
Fairness entails equal bargain and veneration for all, while honesty
incorporates the capacity to infiltrate frankness and candor into all of the employer’s
dealings.

 


Failure to recognize and reward performance: Based on Maslow’s Need-Hierarchy
Theory, each person has some essential needs that must be fulfilled. These
needs are physiological, survival, safety and esteem. Once a need is satisfied,
it ceases to be a motivator and the next level of need commences motivating.
Self-actualization, the vertex of Maslow’s Motivation Theory, is the aspiration
of one’s full completion as a person. Meanwhile, it is important for each
company to have both formal and informal programs that permit managers to
appreciate and remunerate a great rendition. Finally, it is vital for all
managers to regularly acknowledge the employees for their coping and
attribution, as proper recognition induces employees’ motivation, satisfaction,
and engagement.

 


Inconsistent goals and poor feedback: As Goal-Setting Theory (GST)
states, the expectancy, instrumentality, and valence of an outcome will be
high, if goals are difficult (challenging), specific and attainable. Moreover,
consistent and timely feedback is needed for successful pursuit of goals (Locke
& Latham, 1990, 2002). Basically, without clear task descriptions,
performance goals and feedback, it is very hard for the employees to feel
committed to their work. Living with the dubiety that goals could alter at any
moment, impinges on employees’ performance. Instead, employers should set
S.M.A.R.T short and long-term goals. On the other hand, feedback can’t always
be positive, but it should be given on an ongoing basis. Furthermore,
Goal-Setting is more effective and usually only effective, when feedback lets
performance to be tracked in relation to one’s goals. Lastly, Goal-Setting without
feedback appears to have effects on performance (Becker, 1978; Strang, Lawrence & Fowjer, 1978). It
is important to note, as well, that feedback without goals also has a little
effect on performance. When Goal-Setting in response to feedback is prevented
(Locke & Bryan, 1969a), or does not occur (Latham, Mitchell & Dossett,
1978), feedback does not motivate high performance.

 

To
conclude, employees’ motivation and satisfaction remain a challenge for
organizations nowadays. With the changing environment, the confrontation of
motivation issues is becoming even more intricate. This is mainly owed to the
fact that what motivates employees’ change constantly (Bowen &
Radhakrishna, 2001). Thus, managers need to comprehend what motivates each
employee individually and understand the process theories and substantial
components of motivation. Regardless of which theory is pursued, the key to
employees’ motivation is to be aware of what actually motivates them and
contrive a motivating program based on those needs.