Academy of Strategic Management Journal (Print ISSN: 1544-1458; Online ISSN: 1939-6104)

Research Article: 2019 Vol: 18 Issue: 1

Relationship between Motivation and Job Satisfaction of Staff in Private University Libraries, Nigeria

Jerome Idiegbeyan-Ose, Centre for Learning Resources, Landmark University Roseline Opeke, Babcock University

Ayooluwa Aregbesola, Centre for Learning Resources, Landmark University

Sola Emmanuel Owolabi, Centre for Learning Resources, Landmark University

Toluwani Eyiolorunshe Centre for Learning Resources, Landmark University


The success of any organization is pivoted on human capital. Organizations may experience low productivity, high staff attrition and instability due to unsatisfactory performance of employees when they are disgruntled and unhappy. The study investigated the relationship between motivation and job satisfaction of staff in University libraries in Nigeria. The study adopted survey research design, the population consisted of all the 361 library staff in the private university in South-West, Nigeria, and total enumeration was used. The research instrument used was a questionnaire, which was validated by experts in the field of library and information Science and human resources management. The results show that the library staff job satisfaction was low, while their motivation level was high. The finding also revealed relationship among the variables of motivation and job satisfaction. (r=0.036, N=305, P<0.05). Therefore, the study concluded and recommended that the staff should be more recognize and be more motivated in terms of intrinsic motivation, this will eventually, increase their satisfaction. 


Motivation, Job Satisfaction, Organizational Behaviors, Library Staff, Library and Information Centers, Private University Libraries, Nigeria.


Organizations including library and information centers exist as a result of the human capital performing the tasks and duties, hence human capital are so vital to organizational success failure. This is one of the reasons for a continued interest in the phenomenon of employees’ job satisfaction. The tendencies of employees to manifest some features such as productivity, efficiency, team spirit, and truancy among others are directly or indirectly tied to the degree of their job satisfaction. Job satisfaction connotes the overall feeling of an employee about people, rewards, procedures and the degree of emotional stability on the job. It could also be perceived as a psychological state propelled by unquantifiable satisfactory work condition (Somvir, 2013). The strategic and fundamental position of job satisfaction as determinant of employees’ attitude to work is therefore cardinal in any organization. It could also be seen as the extent of response to the expectations and needs of employees as measured with ideal global practice.

The concept of job satisfaction as it relates to this study is employers’ response to expectations and basic needs of librarians and their corresponding attitudes to service delivery in the library. It can be gathered from the foregoing, that employees’ job satisfaction in any organization to a large extent determines the growth and development of such organization.

A fundamental factor that can enhance job satisfaction of workers is associated with motivation. When organizations motivate employees, there is every tendency that employees will cooperate and buy-in or embrace the organization irrespective of the texture. Motivation is a force that drives person to action and performance. The level of motivation that employees receive from their employers could correlate with their satisfaction and turnover intention. It is both intrinsic and extrinsic forces that drive or push individuals to work; it enables the individual to push harder and leading to high performance and organizational productivity. Motivation has the tendency to energize, arouse, direct, and sustain behaviour and performance; in other words, it is the force that propels an employee into achievement of goal. According to Luthans (Olusegun, 2012), the major inspiration for employees is motivation which engenders fulfillment and job dedication and at the same time increases job satisfaction in organizations/library and information centers.

Statement of the Problem

Achieving the organizational goal of any library revolves around human capital. This is why organizations should take utmost attention to the human capital. The culture of any organization may have significant influence on staff intention to leave or remain in any organization. Organizational cultures that are not human friendly may lead to staff intention to quit the organization. Researches revealed that the rate of turnover intention of library staff in university libraries is high (Olusegun, 2012). This eventually will affect the organizational functions and services negatively, for example the negative effect of staff turnover such as cost of replacing the staff, training need, loss of investment on the staff, and it will also slow down the work process in the organization’s including library and information centres. This is a disturbing phenomenon. Granting that some scholars like Rizqi & Ridwan (2015); Saeed et al. (2014) investigated the correlation between motivation and job satisfaction, most of these investigations were carried out outside Africa. Therefore, there is need to investigate the case of Nigeria.

Objective of the Study

The general objective of the study is to investigate the Nexus between Motivation and Job Satisfaction of Library Staff in Nigeria. The specific objectives are to:

1. Find out the level of job satisfaction of library staff in the libraries under study.

2. Establish the level of motivation of library staff in the libraries under study.

3. Determine the relationship between staff motivation and job satisfaction of library staff in the libraries under study.

Research Questions

1. What is the degree of job satisfaction of library staff in private university libraries in South -West Nigeria?

2. What is the level of motivation of library staff in the selected libraries in South-West, Nigeria?


H1: There is no significant relationship between staff motivation and job satisfaction among the library staff in the university under study.

Review Of Literature

Motivation can be defined as the readiness to use higher levels of effort toward organizational goals, and at the same time achieving individual needs. The concept of motivation is focused on energizing, propelling, stimulating individuals towards behavioural change to achieve fulfillment of goals and objectives of an organization, so as to achieve higher productivity and satisfaction of employees (Amaanda, 2011; Saka & Salman, 2014). Motivation as a word is etymologically Latin, “mover” connoting “to move” (Machara & Jain, 2016).

Olusegun (2012) conceptualized motivation as the capability to cause behavioural change. The author further stated that motivation is a force that induces actions that are favorable to achieving specific goals. The author concluded that motivation can be intrinsic or extrinsic.

According to Ogunrombi & Elogie (2015), motivation is whatsoever is required to push employees to perform by gratifying or satisfying to their needs. They further pointed out that several definitions of motivation have some words in common such as aspiration, needs, requests, aims, goals, wants, inducements among others. Motivation of librarians plays an important role in library and information centers. Generally, motivated librarians are more likely to be satisfied and at the same time productive in organizations. It is a fact that motivation of librarians in academic libraries is vital to research, learning and teaching in the university as a whole.

Furthermore, it is believed that motivation is among crucial elements that lead one to his/her goals. It is the willpower with a kind of enthusiasm that leads one to continue to attain greater heights. (Intrinsic motivation) or external (extrinsic motivation) source (Singh & Tiwari, 2011). This forces or drives the individual to press forward towards the actualization of individual’s or organizational goals and objectives. Amune (2014) affirmed that an enabling and comfortable environment could be created by librarians when they are motivated and satisfied. Motivated librarians could be satisfied and consequently, become more productive in organizations. They are more likely to render value-added functions and services to library users.

Several factors could motivate library personnel to press or push harder to achieve individual or organizational goals. Studies have shown that factors such as good and competitive salary, good working condition, recognition for work done, regular promotion, regular incentives, participation in decision making, feedback, cohesive work teams among others are factors that enhance motivation of employees. Also, Saka & Salman (2014); Boluade (2004) asserted that the extent of motivation is directly proportionate to the degree of job satisfaction among workers; and that hard-working staff members that are not motivated would develop undesirable behaviours at their jobs, the superiors and colleagues. In discussing the factors that increase the level of motivation in institutions such as library and information centers, Kolawole et al. (2015) enumerated work arrangements, training and other professional growth opportunities, competitive salary and opportunities for promotion among others as determinants of employees’ motivation in organizations.

Literature has shown that motivation of employee in library and information centers are of two types intrinsic (internal) and extrinsic (external). Intrinsic motivation is the drive or the force that comes from within the individual, such as achievement; while extrinsic motivation is that force that is from external, that is, motivation that is associated with rewards such as salary, promotion, good working environment, incentives among others. Motivation could be seen as the incentive that influences the willingness of employee to carry out a specific task with positive disposition. The feeling of pleasure, interest and enjoyment derived from motivation is referred to as intrinsic motivation while extrinsic motivation is described by reinforcement contingencies or moral boosters (Court, 2012; Gillet et al., 2012; Lai, 2011; Idiegbeyan-ose, 2018).

Scholars such as Saka & Salman (2014), Etubi & Ikekhai (2007), are of the view that motivation could also be seen as the use of various methods to move workers to action. The stimulant of the positive attitude exhibited by an employee is referred to as motivation. It is the gift or incentive to a junior staff by superior or leader e.g. wage, raise, condition of service (Akanbi, 2011). Machara & Jain (2016) investigated the impact of motivation on job satisfaction., some of the respondents’ comments indicated that there is no electronic database for tracking library resources hence it is difficult to serve customers efficiently and effectively and that this gives the customers a wrong impression that librarians do not know their job as they fail to give customers the location of the book without referring them to the card catalogue as a result it causes the librarians low self-esteem; the findings also reveal that librarians are also demotivated because of lack career prospects in the organization; there are few training programmes in place and little room for promotion. Motivation is an ingredient that increases staff level of job satisfaction.

Job satisfaction refers to employee’s satisfaction with the general work characteristics and it affects the morale of workers. It also relates to the expectations of an employee on the job, the degree of happiness derived from the condition of service. Employee satisfaction is major among several factors that determine the effectiveness of an organization. Employee satisfaction is primary to organizations that are effective (Ademodi & Akintomide, 2015; Benrazavi & Silong, 2013; Bhatti & Qureshi, 2007; Bibi et al., 2012; Bockerman & Ilmakunnas, 2012; Dauda et al., 2013; Maithili & Navaneethakrishnan, 2014; Parvin & Kabir, 2011; Sageer et al., 2012; Yaya et al., 2016; Idiegbeyan-ose et al., 2018).

Uddin et al. (2016) pointed out that some authors have defined job satisfaction in different ways, defining work satisfaction as feelings of workers about their jobs and several job functions. It is crucial in everyday life, because organizations in which people work have significant impact on their staff and some of those impacts reflect on the feelings of staff about their job. Singh et al. (2011) pointed out that this feeling may affect their performance, turnover intention and, in turn this affects the librarian’s services to users in library and information centres.

The attitudes of employees based on their perceptions and job demands could be referred to as job satisfaction. It could be seen as the positive or negative response which could be used to evaluate the level of satisfaction enjoyed by employees (Adeoye & Fields, 2014; Aydogdu & Asikgil, 2011; Chuks-Ibe & Ozioko, 2014; Idiegbeyan-ose et al., 2018).

In a study by Tella et al. (2007) reported that work motivation, job satisfaction and organizational commitment of library personnel in Nigeria are directly correlated with perceived motivation, job satisfaction and commitment. This implies that job satisfaction will determine employee commitment in organization.

Motivation and Job Satisfaction of Librarians

Motivation which is a drive or push that energizes the individual to work harder and at the same time be satisfied with the job has been proved to have significant effect on job satisfaction of librarians. It is true that motivated librarians are more likely to be satisfied with their job, and this, in turn, will have effect on the librarians’ achievement, performance and organizational success.

A school of organizational psychologists consider satisfaction to be the final result of the motivation. The implication of this is that a highly motivated employee is said to contribute more in order to achieve organizational goals and in turn is satisfied with his or her achievements/rewards from doing so; hence motivation of employee is highly related to job satisfaction (Ahmad et al., 2014; Ajala, 2012; Babalola & Nwalo, 2013; Bhatnegar, 2014; Lamptey et al., 2013; Kian et al., 2014; Khan & Parveen, 2014; Lamptey et al., 2013; Yaya et al., 2016; Idiegbeyan-ose, 2018).

Most of the empirical studies found motivation and job satisfaction to be positively correlated, while hostile work environment is seen as a demotivational factor in the work place (Babalola & Nwalo, 2013; Kian et al., 2014; Oni-Ojo et al., 2015).

Adeoye & Fields (2014) conducted a study on compensation management and employee job satisfaction in Nigeria; they discovered that compensation management affect job satisfaction (motivation,) financial compensation and non-financial compensation and employees’ job satisfaction. This implies that both financial motivation such as salary, regular promotion and other fringe benefits and non-financial motivation such as good working environment, recognition among others are important factors in determining the job satisfaction of librarians.

Jehanzeb et al. (2012) investigated the impact of rewards and motivation on job satisfaction in Saudi Arabia with 568 employees participating in the study, through questionnaire as the instrument for data collection. The researchers used regression analysis to conduct the research so as to test the relationship between rewards, motivation and job satisfaction. The findings revealed that rewards have positive significance on motivation, and that motivation is positively related to the job satisfaction, and that rewards have a positive significant effect on job satisfaction.

Jain (2013) buttressed that adequate training can motivate librarians as they are able to adapt in the twenty-first century environment and acquire new roles including digital content mangers, web designers, networkers and knowledge brokers. The author further pointed out that for the librarians to acquire these new skills they should be continuously trained and have computer literacy skills and that if they provided with this facilities and support, they will be motivated and at the same time satisfied with their job.


The study employed the survey research design of correlational type. Correlational research design assesses relationship between or among variables and does measurement of two or more variables. The study population was entire 361 library staff in the 27 private university libraries, south-west, Nigeria.

The study used total enumeration method. This implies that no sampling was used as the entire library staff of the investigated 27 private universities used for the study. Data for this study was collected through questionnaire.

The analysis of data collected was done using descriptive statistics for research questions 1-2, while the hypothesis was tested using Pearson Product Moment Correlation (PPMC); to verify the differences or relationships between two variables in the study.

Results And Discussion

Demographic Characteristics of Respondents

Figures 1-4 show that more females (66%) than males (34%) with the largest percentage of respondents within the age group of 31-40 years which accounted for (72%) of the respondents, participated in the study. Most of the respondents (50%) have worked in the library between 6-10 years and are mostly Library assistants (43%).

Figure 1: Gender

Figure 2: Age Of Respondents

Figure 3: Designation Of The Respondents

Figure 4: Length Of Service

Research Question 1:

What is the level of job satisfaction of library staff in private university libraries in South-West Nigeria?

Deduction could be made from Table 1 based on the average mean score of 2.13 on the sale 4 that low job satisfaction was evident among library staff in Private University Libraries. In the same vein, recognition of librarians which was a predictor was found to be low (average mean=1.52,). This is a pivot for conclusion that expected respect by the staff of private university libraries investigated was not accorded them in their various institutions. It was also found that the work environment was also not conducive for the library staff of the investigated university libraries (average mean=2.29). Opportunities for promotions was high (average mean=2.57). This implies that the promotion of library staff is regular in all the investigated private university libraries. This may be may improve their level of job satisfaction.

Table 1
Level Of Job Satisfaction Of The Respondents
Statement VH
My promotion is regular 126 159 0 20 3.28 (.77) 2.57
(41) (52) (0) (7)    
My immediate boss is interested in my career progress 109 139 57 0 3.17 (.72)
(36) (46) (19) (0)    
My boss recommends me for promotion regularly 16 4 109 176 1.54 (.77)
(5) (1) (36) (58)    
My promotion corresponds with the level of my input in the library 12 0 153 140 1.62 (.69)
(4) (0) (50) (46)    
My promotion boosts the level of my job performance 141 122 9 33 3.22 (.94)
(46) (40) (3) (11)    
Conducive Work Environment
My office is conducive for working 16 0 131 158 1.59 (.75) 2.29
(5) (0) (43) (52)    
My workmates are friendly 155 109 15 26 3.29 (.90)
(51) (36) (5) (9)    
I am happy to go to work everyday 59 135 111 0 2.83 (.73)
(19) (44) (36) (0)    
I have the resources I used to work effectively 0 4 132 169 1.46 (.52)
(0) (1) (43) (55)    
Employee Recognition
My opinion on work issues is respected 0 2 213 90 1.71 (.47) 1.52
(0) (1) (70) (30)    
I am allowed to use my initiative on the job 0 2 166 137 1.56 (.51)
(0) (1) (54) (45)    
I am well respected 0 2 85 218 1.29 (.47)
(0) (1) (28) (71)    
Overall mean             2.13

Research Question 2:

What is the level of motivation of library staff in the private university libraries in South-West, Nigeria?

Table 2 indicates that the level of motivation was considered to be high by library staff in private University Libraries South-West, Nigeria. This is evident, considering the average mean score of 2.96 on the scale of 4. Intrinsic motivation seems to be high with average mean score of 3.11, compare with extrinsic motivation with the average mean score of 2.81. This implies that the library staff in the private university libraries investigated were more motivated intrinsically than extrinsically. Meaning that the motivation they received from external (their employees) such as salary, promotion, job security among other was less than their internal motivation such as work experience, skills, higher degree among others.

Table 2
Level Of Motivation Of The Respondents
Statement VH
H (%) L (%) VL (%) M SD AM
Intrinsic Motivation
Opportunity to use my ability 125 1 88 91 2.52 (1.29) 3.11
41 0 29 30    
I have a sense of challenge and achievement 200 33 24 48 3.26 (1.14)
66 11 8 16    
Positive recognition 206 22 32 45 3.28 (1.14)
68 7 10 15    
I am being treated in caring and considerate manner by my boss 10 10 127 158 1.58 (.71)
3 3 42 52    
My work experience enhances my effective job performance 177 127 0 1 3.57 (.51)
58 42 0 0    
My job skills enhance s my satisfaction in this information age 159 117 22 7 3.40 (.72)
52 38 7 2    
The higher degrees I acquired energize me to be more effective in the library work 165 139 0 1 3.53 (.52)
54 46 0 0    
Higher responsibility 217 87 0 1 3.70 (.48)
71 29 0 0    
Extrinsic Motivation
Job security 239 1 26 39 3.44 (1.09) 2.81
78 0 9 13    
Career advancement/development opportunity 260 44 0 1 3.85 (.39)
85 14 0 0    
Training and career development 165 104 35 1 3.42 (.70)
54 34 11 0    
Payment of reasonable salaries and wages 136 81 52 36 3.04 (1.04)
45 27 17 12    
Good working conditions 152 58 50 45 3.04 (1.12)
50 19 16 15    
Peaceful work environment 119 53 58 75 2.71 (1.22)
39 17 19 25    
Office physical environment (i.e. clean, provision of air condition, fan, good offices, furniture and fittings) 105 86 28 86 2.69 (1.21)
34 28 9 28    
Leadership styles 125 38 82 60 2.75 (1.19)
41 12 27 20 41  
Fair employee treatment 119 23 94 69 2.63 (1.21)
39 8 31 23    
Availability of operational tools and equipment enhance my productivity in the library. 114 62 49 80 2.69 (1.22)
37 20 16 26    
Unconductive work environment provided by my employer affects my productivity. 114 13 91 87 2.50 (1.25)
37 4 30 29    
Poor management has a negative impact on my productivity in the library 164 5 86 50 2.93 (1.21)
54 2 28 16    
Negative attitude exhibited by most library users affects my productivity 16 10 158 121 1.74 (.76)
5 3 52 40    
Effective job design put in place by my employer enhances my job performance in the library 94 73 34 104 2.51 (1.25)
31 24 11 34    
Effective implementation of government laws and policies enhances my productivity as a librarian 131 40 25 109 2.63 (1.35)
43 13 8 36    
Security of lives and properties in the university community enhances my productivity in the university library 110 43 118 34 2.75 (1.07)
36 14 39 11    
Not payment of some academic allowances as paid to my colleagues that are lecturers affects my productivity 63 61 126 55 2.43 (1.01)
21 20 41 18    
Overall Mean             2.96

Hypothesis Testing

The relationship motivation and job satisfaction of library staff in Nigerian private university libraries is as shown in Table 3. The result indicates that motivation correlated significantly and positively with job satisfaction of library staff in private University Library, South-West, Nigeria (r=0.036, N=305, P<0.05). Therefore, null hypothesis is rejected. Suggest that when motivation increases, job satisfaction will also increase.

Table 3
Relationship Between Motivation And Job Satisfaction Of Library Staff In Nigerian Private University Libraries
Variables Mean Standard Deviation (SD) N R P value Decision
Staff Motivation 2.96 0.49 305 0.036 0.000 Significant
Job Satisfaction 2.13 0.36

The main aim of this study is to understand the Nexus between Motivation and Job Satisfaction of Library Staff in Nigeria. The result of the study as presented in table 1 reveals that the level of job satisfaction among investigated library staff was low, with the average mean of 2.13. The low job satisfaction by the staff is hinged on poor recognition of library staff and lack of conducive working environment with average mean scores of 1.52 and 2.29 on a scale of 4 respectively. Due to lack of respect (mean=1.29) for library staff and the denial of opportunity to use their initiatives (mean=1.56), hence their job satisfaction was low. Previous studies (Ikonne & Onuoha, 2013; Dhanapal et al., 2013; Esakkimuthu & Vellaichamy, 2015; Lamptey et al., 2013) conducted in other fields also found that regular promotion; recognition and opportunity to use personal initiative are predictors of job satisfaction.

Furthermore, as shown in Table 2 the level of motivation of library staff in private university libraries in South-West Nigeria was high (average mean=2.96) on a scale of 4. Intrinsic motivation appears to have higher average mean score of 3.11 than extrinsic motivation that has the average mean of 2.81. It implies that the library staffs in private University libraries South-West, Nigeria were motivated intrinsically than extrinsically. These findings agreed with previous studies of Yaya et al. (2016), who also discovered that the library staff in the universities libraries he investigated were more motivated intrinsically than extrinsically.

The correlation analysis presented in Table 3 indicates that motivation correlated significantly and positively with job satisfaction of library staff in private University Library, South-West, Nigeria (r=0.036, P<0.05).

Therefore, the null hypothesis was rejected. This conforms to previous studies such as Yaya et al. (2016); Oni-Ojo et al. (2015); Adeoye & Fields (2014); Ahmad et al. (2014); Kian et al. (2014); Khan & Parveen (2014); Babalola & Nwalo (2013); Jain (2013); Ajala (2012); Jehanzeb et al. (2012). The authors established a relationship between motivation and job satisfaction of employees in various organizations. This implies that a well-motivated employee is likely to be satisfied with his/her job.


Motivation as presented in this study is intrinsic and extrinsic while job satisfaction that engenders productivity is pivoted on the duo. This investigation has been able to establish the relationship between motivation and job satisfaction. It therefore holds that organizational culture and management decisions that entrench motivation as a paramount factor has high tendency to maintain a productive workforce. This implies that as the level of motivation increases, the tendency is very high for productivity level to also increase.

From the findings of this study, it is therefore concluded that motivation of library staff is inevitable to enhance their job satisfaction especially in private university libraries. Hence university librarians and other sectional heads should put in place those motivating factors that would enhance job satisfaction of workers in the libraries. This is true because satisfied workers are productive workers and they will want to stay and work for the success of the organization.


1. The study revealed high level of organizational injustice of library staff in the private university library and this may lead to job dissatisfaction. This was attributed to fact that employees were not treated base on merit; they are not treated fairly, among others. The study recommends that the library management should treat the employee’s base on merit as this will go a long way to improve organizational trust and also increase the staff job satisfaction.

2. Library staff in private university library staff should be more recognize and be more motivate d in terms of intrinsic motivation; this will eventually increase their level of job satisfaction.

3. The management of libraries in private universities should take the issue of staff welfare to be priority this will increase their level of job satisfaction and organizational productivity will increase at the long run.

4. Library staff should be train and retrain regularly, this will increase their motivational level and at the same time increase organizational productivity.


The authors wish to acknowledge the publication sponsorship of this paper from Landmark University, Omu-Aran, Nigeria.