Sample Essay on High School Experience

. Context

I was hired as an intern at my father’s real estate company. Had great expectations of my duties and being accepted until the manager made it clear to me I had no merit other than because of my father to work there and being paid pocket money and turned into an errand boy.

  1. Symptoms
  2. Loss of psyche to attend work
  3. Avoiding my father and family members
  4. Avoiding my manager
  5. Avoiding staff meetings and company related events and activities
  6. Causes and Motivational Theories

Cause I

Lost psyche of going to work because of low pay, degrading position and unsupportive manager.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs—Lack of adequate incentive and low self-esteem and social sphere

McClelland’s motivational needs theory – Lack of affiliation and power and no achievement

  1. Cause 2

Avoiding my father for failing him, giving a degrading position and paying me poorly

McClelland’s motivational needs theory – lack of perceived achievement, affiliation and hence lack of power

Maslow’s theory – Low self-esteem and lack of self-actualization

III. Cause 3

Avoiding my manager for being unsupportive and unimpressed by my apparent lack of skills was due to:

Maslow’s theory – Low self-esteem and lack of sense of belonging and self-actualization

McClelland’s theory – Lack of achievement and affiliation and hence not power

  1. Cause 4

Avoiding staff meetings and company activities was due to:

Maslow’s theory – Low self-esteem and lack of sense of belonging and self-actualization

McClelland’s theory – Low sense of power, achievement and affiliation because of inadequate skills to actively engage in the key activities of the company

  1. Fix
Fix 1

Low psyche to go to work because of low pay, unsupportive manager and seemingly demeaning job description

Held a meeting with my father and then jointly with the manager to air my views:

McClelland’s Theory—Achievement, Affiliation and Power

Affiliation—Increased sense of affiliation and confidence

Achievement—Given more responsibilities and pay and mentored by the manager and my father hence became active at workplace Met by acceptance into graduate school

Power—Felt more confident and was always invited to participate in important company activities

Maslow’s Theory – Self-actualization, esteem and social

Self-actualization: Increased pay helped gain significant financial liberty

Self-esteem: Increased pay and responsibilities improved my confidence levels and well as my social sphere



Fix 2

Avoiding my father because of:

Feeling of failure: Meeting allowed me to open up and mentored while also allowing me to understand better my situation

Low payment: My father increased my pay though minimally but it helped boost my morale and relationship with him

Hostile work environment: Meeting with the manager and being mentored, I felt more confident.

Fix 3

Avoiding my manager for being unsupportive and mean:

Mentorship improved our relationship and better understanding between us.

Fix 4

Dreading staff meetings and company activities because:

Unsupportive manager: He took me in after a meeting and mentored me. It built my confidence and skill sets.

I became more active in the company as my father as doubled up as mentor.










High School Experience

Motivation is an integral part of any organization especially when it comes to growth and development. In an increasingly competitive business environment, employee motivation is an important competitive tool as it directly influences employee behavior and consequently productivity. Whether at organizational or individual level, motivation entails allotting energy with the view to meeting various needs. Humans are inherently driven to maximize their efforts as they seek to satisfy their needs. However, different individuals are motivated by different factors including monetary and non-monetary incentives. I was confounded with the realities of motivation or lack of it, symptoms, factors that affect motivation levels and how to fix de-motivation in a workplace setting when I worked as an intern at my father’s real estate company while in high school. This essay is a reflective analysis of my high school in relation to motivation or de-motivation. It will focus on the context of the experience, symptoms of de-motivation that I experienced, causes and how I fixed the problem.


During high school, I was worked as an intern at my father’s real estate firm in our town. I was primarily involved in administrative duties due to my skill set. Before taking up the opportunity, I was really thrilled by the prospect of joining millions of others in actively building the society. However, I was more excited by the prospect of earning a few dollars. I had a dream that this would at least give me financial liberation that I had always craved for. While in high school, I always looked forward to the days when I would be able to earn my own money instead of depending on ‘handouts’ from my parents in the form of pocket money. I had well first few days at the firm. However, things turned sour when I learnt that I would not be earning as much as I thought while my role was reduced to running errands for my father. Moreover, most of the activities at the company seemed complex for my relatively young mind. Everyone in an office of twelve employees sounded like rocket scientists. So I ended up on the periphery of all the activities in the office. The most demoralizing aspect of my internship was however a new manager who was unimpressed by my position in the company. According to him, I lacked any qualification to work in any position in the company other than the fact that I was the son of the company owner.


The fractious relationship I had with the manager, my father and my seemingly lack of adequate knowledge to actively participate in the day-to-day activities of the company led to de-motivation which manifested itself in various ways. First, I literally had to, with the help of my parents, drag myself to work. I was always anxious around the workplace. Sometimes it took the intervention of my elder siblings and a friend for me to continue going to work with my father. Second, the relationship between my father and I took a serious hit. I always avoided him at the office and even more at home. I would seclude myself to my room or find an excuse to visit a friend whenever he was around. Over time, the problem extended to family members.

I also dreaded any platform that would force me, my father and the manager to come together especially staff meetings. I was always afraid that my relationship with my father and my lack of experience would come up during one of such meetings. So I tried my best to avoid the manager as well. Lastly, I dreaded staff meetings or any event that brought all the employees together. I was forced to skip a company get together-cum-celebration party that was hosted at our backyard.



Causes and Motivational Theories

My de-motivation was caused by several factors that are grounded in motivation theories especially those fronted by Adam Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory and David McClelland’s motivational needs theory.

Cause 1:

Lack of psyche to go to work due to low payment, inadequate skills and knowledge of most of company’s operations, unaccommodating manager and seemingly demeaning duties were caused by several factors as explained by the two motivation theories. Within the context of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, my most urgent and pressing need was earning some money to gain some level financial independence from my parents. This was however not met as I was paid just pocket money. Success would also have translated to an achievement.

Cause 2:

Avoiding my father was in response to my inability to meet his expectations as well as his inability to meet my financial expectations. To me, the internship was an opportunity for self-actualization. Moreover, I was seeking for a sense of belonging as I believed it would build my self-esteem as well as increase my social sphere.

Cause 3:

Avoiding my manager was primarily because his criticism and lack of approval affected my self-esteem, sphere of influence or power and affiliation and social space.

Cause 4:

Dreading staff meetings was primarily due to my lack of authority or affiliation and achievement. I was working as an errand boy for my father and being paid what I considered peanuts and working with a manager who disapproved of me: these affected my authority, affiliation and influence at the company.

Fix 1:

The problems of lack of psyche and disapproving manager which resulted in my dreading going to work and also affecting my relations with my father and the rest of my family were resolved through a joint meeting. I requested my father to invite the manager to a meeting after explaining to him and my family members what I was going through. My father clarified my position to the manager who became more understanding. He also increased my pay. I regained my influence at the company and I was more sociable. I affiliated and associated more with the manager who became my mentor as well as my father who actively monitored my progress.

Fix 2:

The problem with my father was further resolved through spending quality times together during weekends when we were off duty. He also took me to some of the sites and meetings. This helped regain my power and affiliation as well as improving my esteem.

Fix 3:

Avoiding the manager was resolved through a joint meeting with my father who clarified the reasons why I was working as an intern at his company. The manager became more understanding and through his voluntary mentorship, I increasingly became well conversant with company’s operations. I regained my self esteem while my need for achievement also improved. I became also more influential and affiliated more with the company’s community as my sense of belonging improved.

Fix 4:

The problem with attending staff meetings was resolved through mentorship by the manager which built my confidence and hence my self esteem.