In the course "Economics of Motivation" the students get to try themselves as consultants in working life to test theories in practice. The assignments are based on how companies motivate their employees, and the students must analyze and recommend measures that can increase motivation. The best report was awarded NOK 40,000 in the Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition on November 24.
In the course “Economics of Motivation” at the UiS Business School, students learn about motivation at the workplace through both theory and practice. A large part of the course is about applying what they learn from lectures into a case study. The general task is to evaluate how the employer motivates its employees. The students work in teams and choose the company they want to investigate.
On November 24, the three student teams that submitted the best case reports presented their work in the Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition and competed for the first prize of as much as NOK 40,000.
The winners of this year's Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition were Team Aarbakke with master's students Veronica Svihus Bollestad, Torbjørn Berge, Eivind Grov Sande and Anders Haugland Øvretveit. The team did their case study at Aarbakke.
As the students pointed out, the case study has given us training in presentation techniques and making academic content generally understandable. We have learned to conduct interviews, analyze data, and combine theory and practice through the assignment.
Learning goes both ways
CFO and Deputy CEO of Sandnes Sparebank, Tomas N. Middelthon, sat on the expert committee that evaluated the groups' case studies together with research fellow Andreas Fidjeland. The students were well prepared this year, and it was clear that they had spent a lot of time with the companies to get a picture of how they focus on motivation and reward.
– As in previous case competitions, the students learn a lot from the companies out there. Still, the companies also get helpful knowledge from students' newly acquired theoretical backgrounds asking academically relevant questions, says Middelthon.
Skilled and committed students
Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition is part of the UiS Business School's commitment on more collaboration with companies in the region and giving students professional, relevant practical experience.
– As in previous case competitions, the students learn a lot from the companies out there. Still, the companies also learn from students' new theoretical backgrounds asking academically relevant questions, says Middelthon.
Professor Mari Rege ved Handelshøgskolen har sammen med postdoktor Simone Valerie Häckl-taught the course with postdoctoral fellow Simone Valerie Häckl-Schermer. Fellow Espen Sagen has been primarily responsible for organizing the case competition. Häckl-Schermer is impressed with the work the students have put into the subject. The students have all shown outstanding professionalism and commitment.
Text: Egil C. Svela