Motivation factors in the professional activity of social workers

Jautrė R. Šinkūnienė, Agata Katkonienė

Abstract


Social, moral and economical crisis in Lithuania has affected working conditions of social workers. The changing needs of society pose many challenges which require a change in thinking, new skills and emotional balance.
The authors of the paper analyse the main motivation a factors of social workers in their professional activity and the adequacy of wages and financial promotion, compare the difference of operational efficiency and quality assurance strategies in budgetary institutions and non-governmental social organizations, examine training and/or career prospects of social workers as well as the influence of work environment and microclimate on social workers’ motivation.
The results of the social workers questionnaire revealed the main motivation factors at work: the highest level of dissatisfaction is caused by inadequate wages, the lack of social security, hard and stressful work, and the lack of training opportunities. However, social workers in non-governmental organizations are more satisfied with work organization and leadership, cooperation and teamwork, and they are given more autonomy and responsibility than social workers in budgetary institutions.
Content analysis of motivation problems revealed supervision as a possible way to effectively develop the motivation of social workers. The authors analyse the possibility of optimizing the effectiveness of the performance of leaders’ functions by using administrative supervision, the influence of educational supervision on social workers’ skills and personal development, and the importance of supportive supervision for the organization environment and social relations. Applying supervision in social work would strengthen social workers’ motivation, increase the effectiveness of social services and the quality of the personal life for most social workers.

Keywords


motivation; motivation factors; professional burnout; supervision

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"Social Work" ISSN online 2029-2775 / ISSN print 1648-4789