Warm-Up Activity 3.1: Preparing a White Paper

A white paper is an authoritative, informative guide or report that aims to identify a problem, propose a solution, or assist in decision making. In short, the purpose of a white paper is to inform and persuade. The intended audience of a white paper could be the general public or possibly an organization or groups of organizations looking to address needs or find solutions to problems. The author’s main goal again is to be persuasive and to ensure she addresses the needs of her audience.

The content of a white paper should include the following basic elements. Start with a compelling introduction where you present the problem and summarize your solution succinctly in a paragraph or two. Next, present the problem or describe the opportunity in more detail and support your description with solid, factual evidence. Then, describe a baseline solution to the problem. Lastly, present your solution as the best possible solution. Complete your white paper with a conclusion that restates the problem and presents your approach to understanding or solving the issue.

When it comes to formatting a white paper, there is no right or wrong way nor is there any single method or approach. You may want to create an outline before you begin writing to assist in the clear flow of content for your white paper. A white paper may or may not feature a title page and abstract. You also may wish to include images, charts, graphs, and other figures to back up your claims and capture your audience’s attention. There is no set page limit for white papers either. It depends on how much space you need to convey your compelling message. Just keep your audience in mind when determining the length of your white paper. Remember, the overall goal is to be persuasive, informative, and call your audience to action.

Additional Resources

Purdue Online Writing Lab – White Paper: Purpose and Audience

Assignment Instructions

Imagine that you have been asked by a large company, with more than 500 employees in various levels of the company, to prepare a white paper on motivation techniques. Specifically, they have always relied on incentives and bonuses to motivate their employees and they are interested in exploring alternatives.

Looking at recent research in the field, as well as the resources offered in this activity, describe various motivation interventions and take a position on the effectiveness of these motivation techniques.

Locate examples of organizations recently (within the past 5 years) in the news due to their efforts to motivate employees. Support your discussion of motivation techniques by including at least two examples of organizations that were able to successfully motivate their employees.

Support your whitepaper with at least five research articles published in peer-reviewed journals in the past 7 years.

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Warm-Up Activity 3.1: Preparing a White Paper

One of the key ingredients for organizational success is the ability of an entity to motivate its employees. In its broadest form, organizational motivation refers to the willingness of the workers to exert the highest levels of effort in pursuance of the workplace goals conditioned by the ability of that initiative to satisfy some personal or individual needs (Kuranchie-Mensah & Amponsah-Tawiah, 2016). Motivation is divided into two that is intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. On the one hand, intrinsic motivation is behavior often driven by internal rewards, for example, well-being. This kind of motivation, therefore, arises from within the worker. Extrinsic motivation, on the other hand, is behavior often driven by external rewards such as money. As the case of Google and Apple illustrates, a motivation technique that works best is the one that integrates the internal and external rewards to energize the workers more holistically.
The opportunity: The various motivation strategies adopted by firms
There are evidence-based motivation strategies that firms across the world have taken up to drive the employees’ performance. One of the most common is the provision of rewards. According to Van Eerde (2015), the primary aspect of the reward system is the financial outcome. Hence, the scholar purports that the reward system often entails the provision of financial benefits to increase the morale of the worker. The reward system may come in the form of bonuses, pay rise, and other monetary incentives. While this is the case, Franco-Santos and...
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