Hawthorne’s Theory: A Very Powerful Tool to Motivate People

One of the many challenges that businesses face is employee retention. Employees come and go. And employers should always be ready to let go of those who want to go, keep the loyal ones and learn to embrace the new ones.

Career growth and salary are just two of the top reasons why an employee would go and look for another job. As a business owner, you have to continually think how to retain your people. Your people will always be the company’s best assets. Thus, you need to take care of them by listening to their needs.

Despite of good policies and salaries, some employees would still go and look for other opportunities. Sometimes, you cannot just keep good employees. At times like this, it will be best to apply Hawthorne’s theory.

Human Resources guru and developer of Hawthorne’s theory, Edward Hawthorne gave an example about a company that divided their employees into two groups. The first group was placed in a non air-conditioned room while the second group was placed inside an air-conditioned room. The second group was more productive, producing an output nearly double than the first group.

Initially, management will conclude that they need to put more air-conditioning systems to achieve the necessary output. But instead of achieving their goals, the output is gradually declines. So what happened? Employees simply do not need air-conditioned rooms. They need to feel that they are being taken cared of by the company. More than the comfort in their workplace, it is the thought that the company will be there for them that truly matters.

Hawthorne’s theory is one way to motivate people to do their job well. This is the role of the Human Resources department, which will work wonders on your goal in minimizing employee turnover.


While troubleshooting an internet connection issue from our office, I searched for a Visual traceroute tool online. I came across a website called YouGetSignal, which does a couple things.

  1. Checks if a certain port is open given an IP address.
  2. See the location of a given IP address on Google Maps. You can use MaxMind or Hostip.info as the geolocation information source.
  3. Does a trace route and displayed in Google Maps.
  4. See the location of a given phone number.
  5. Find other websites given a domain or IP address.
  6. Do a whois lookup.

I usually use a couple of different tools to do all these and they don’t have the nice tabbed interface of YouGetSignal. Check out this website next time you need to do some network testing.