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  • 1. Organizational Behavior ModuleAssignment 1:Explain what "Maslows Hierarchy ofNeeds" is and how it can be applied inrelation to employees motivation.Discuss the theories that support and thetheories that criticize Maslows theory.What is your personal opinion andanalysis of this theory?
  • 2. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsThe basis of Maslows theory of motivation is that human beings are motivated byunsatisfied needs, and that certain lower needs need to be satisfied before higherneeds can be addressed. Per the teachings of Abraham Maslow, there are generalneeds (physiological, safety, love, and esteem) which have to be fulfilled before aperson is able to act unselfishly. These needs were dubbed "deficiency needs." While aperson is motivated to fulfill these basal desires, they continue to move toward growth,and eventually self-actualization. The satisfaction of these needs is quite healthy. Whilepreventing their gratification makes us ill or act evilly.As a result, for adequate workplace motivation, it is important that leadershipunderstands the active needs active for individual employee motivation. In thismanner, Maslows model indicates that fundamental, lower-order needs like safety andphysiological requirements have to be satisfied in order to pursue higher-level motivators along the lines of self-fulfillment. As depicted in thefollowing hierarchical diagram, sometimes called Maslows Needs Pyramid orMaslows Needs Triangle, after a need is satisfied it stops acting as a motivator and thenext need one rank higher starts to motivate.2
  • 3. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsThe psychologist Abraham Maslow developed a theory that suggests we, humans, aremotivated to satisfy five basic needs. These needs are arranged in a hierarchy. Maslowsuggests that we seek first to satisfy the lowest level of needs. Once this is done, weseek to satisfy each higher level of need until we have satisfied all five needs. Whilemodern research shows some shortcomings with this theory, Maslows Hierarchy ofNeeds Theory remains an important and simple motivation tool for managers tounderstand and apply. The Hierarchy of Needs is as follows:1. Physiological Needs (basic issues of survival such as salary and stable employment)2. Security Needs (stable physical and emotional environment issues such as benefits,pension, safe work environment, and fair work practices)3. "Belongingness" Needs (social acceptance issues such as friendship or cooperationon the job)4. Esteem Needs (positive self-image and respect and recognition issues such as jobtitles, nice work spaces, and prestigious job assignments.)5. Self-Actualization Needs (achievement issues such as workplace autonomy,challenging work, and subject matter expert status on the job)With Maslows theory, an employees beginning emphasis on the lower order needs ofphysiology and security makes sense. Generally, a person beginning their career will bevery concerned with physiological needs such as adequate wages and stable incomeand security needs such as benefits and a safe work environment. We all want a goodsalary to meet the needs of our family and we want to work in a stable environment.Employees whose lowest level needs have not been met will make job decisions basedon compensation, safety, or stability concerns. Also, employees will revert to satisfyingtheir lowest level needs when these needs are no longer met or are threatened (such asduring an economic downturn).This places an extra obligation on managers to act humanely when difficultorganizational decisions such as staff reductions have to be implemented. Callousimplementation of difficult decisions will cause the remaining employees in theorganization to feel threatened about the ability or desire of the organization to continueto meet their physiological and security needs.Once these basic needs are met, the employee will want his "belongingness" (or social)needs met. The level of social interaction an employee desires will vary based onwhether the employee is an introvert or extrovert. The key point is that employeesdesire to work in an environment where they are accepted in the organization and have3
  • 4. Maslows Hierarchy of Needssome interaction with others. This means effective interpersonal relations arenecessary.Managers can create an environment where staff cooperation is rewarded. This willencourage interpersonal effectiveness. Ongoing managerial communication aboutoperational matters is also an important component of meeting employees socialneeds. Employees who are "kept in the dark" about operational matters and the futureplans of the organization often feel like they are an organizational outsider. (This lastpoint is especially important for virtual employees whose absence from the office putsan extra obligation on managers to keep these employees engaged in organizationalcommunications.)With these needs satisfied, an employee will want his higher level needs of esteem andself-actualization met. Esteem needs are tied to an employees image of himself and hisdesire for the respect and recognition of others. Even if an individual does not want tomove into management, he probably does not want to do the same exact work for 20years. He may want to be on a project team, complete a special task, learn other tasksor duties, or expand his duties in some manner. Cross-training, job enrichment, andspecial assignments are popular methods for making work more rewarding. Further,allowing employees to participate in decision making on operational matters is apowerful method for meeting an employees esteem needs. Finally, symbols ofaccomplishment such as a meaningful job title, job perks, awards, a nice office,business cards, work space, etc. are also important to an employees esteem. Theimportant consideration for managers is that they must provide rewards to theiremployees that both come from the organization and from doing the work itself.Rewards need to be balanced to have a maximum effect.With self-actualization, the employee will be interested in growth and individualdevelopment. He will also need to be skilled at what he does. He may want achallenging job, an opportunity to complete further education, increased freedom fromsupervision, or autonomy to define his own processes for meeting organizationalobjectives. At this highest level, managers focus on promoting an environment where anemployee can meet his own self-actualization needs.The basic idea of Maslows Hierarchy of Needs is that our needs are constantlychanging. As one need is met, we desire other needs. This makes sense. Will the raisewe received 3 years ago motivate us for the next 10 years? Will the challenging job webegan 5 years ago have the same effect on us today? Will the performance award wereceived last year completely satisfy our need for recognition for the rest of our lives?The answers to all of these questions is clearly, no. This is the beauty of Maslowstheory of motivation. Employee needs change with time. This means that managers4
  • 5. Maslows Hierarchy of Needsmust continually adapt to employees changing needs if they want to keep theirworkforce motivated. Maslow understood these truths!Maslows theory has often been criticized because we can find exceptions to it, such asthe military, police, firefighters, etc. who will risk their safety for the well-being of othersor parents who will sacrifice their basic needs for their children. However, there are veryfew theories that are not flawed in that once we start drilling down to individualisticlevels, then the theory or generalization often starts to fall apart. For example, evenNewtons theory of physics, which later became laws, fell apart once we were able todrill down to the atomic level.Maslows theory remains a classic because rather than looking at psychology as strictlythe study of the mentally ill, his theory was based upon healthy persons. And being oneof the first humanistic ones, it has its share of flaws.In Maslows (1971) later years, he become more interested in the higher order or metneeds and tried to further distinguish them. Maslow theorized that the ultimate goal oflife is self-actualization, which is almost never fully attained but rather is something wetry to always strive for.He later theorized that this level does not stop; it goes on to self-transcendence, whichcarries us to the spiritual level, e.g. Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Dalai Lama, or evenpoets, such as Robert Frost. Maslows self-transcendence level recognizes the humanneed for ethics, creativity, compassion and spirituality. Without this spiritual ortransgenic sense, we are simply animals or machines.5
  • 6. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsThis expansion of the higher order needs is shown here:Note that the four meta needs (above the inner pyramid) can be pursued in any order,depending upon a persons wants or circumstances, as long as the basic needs have allbeen met:8. Self-transcendence — a transgenic level that emphasizes visionary intuition, altruism,and unity consciousness.7. Self-actualization — knows exactly who you are, where you are going, and what youwant to accomplish. A state of well-being6. Aesthetic — to do things not simply for the outcome but because its the reason youare here on earth — at peace, more curious about the inner workings of all things.5. Cognitive — to be free of the good opinion of others — learning for learning alone,contribute knowledge.4. Esteem — feeling of moving up in world, recognition, few doubts about self.3. Belongingness and love — belong to a group, close friends to confide with.2. Safety — feels free from immediate danger.1. Physiological — food, water, shelter, sex.6
  • 7. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsIn addition, just as in his earlier model, we may be in a state of flux — we shift betweenlevels (Maslow, 1968). For example there may be peak experiences for temporary self-actualizations and self-transcendence. These are our spiritual or creative moments.Going Beyond MaslowWhile the research of Maslows theory has undergone limited empirical scrutiny, it stillremains quite popular due to its simplicity and being the start of the movement awayfrom a totally behaviorist/reductionist/mechanistic approach to a more humanistic one.In addition, a lot of concerns are directed at his methodology in that he picked a smallnumber of people that he declared self-actualizing and came to the conclusion aboutself-actualization. However, he understood this and thought of his work as simply amethod of pointing the way, rather than being the final say. In addition, he hoped thatothers would take up the cause and complete what he had begun.This brings us to the next models. Other researchers have taken up his cause andfurthered refined them, mostly in the area of organizations and work. Herzberg, Alderfer,and McGregors research are all closely tied to Maslows theory.Herzbergs Hygiene and Motivational FactorsFrederick Herzberg was considered one of the most influential management consultantsand professors of the modern postwar era. Herzberg was probably best known for hischallenging thinking on work and motivation. He was considered both an icon andlegend among visionaries such as Abraham Maslow, Peter Drucker, and DouglasMacGregor.Herzberg (1966) is best known for his list offactors that are based on Maslows Hierarchyof Needs, except his version is more closelyrelated to the working environment:HERZBERGS HYGIENE & MOTIVATIONALFACTORSHygiene or Dissatisfies:  Working conditions  Policies and administrative practices  Salary and Benefits  Supervision  Status  Job security7
  • 8. Maslows Hierarchy of Needs  Co-workers  Personal lifeMotivators or Satisfiers:  Recognition  Achievement  Advancement  Growth  Responsibility  Job challengeHygiene or dissatisfies factors must be present in the job before motivators can be usedto stimulate a person. That is, you cannot use motivators until all the hygiene factors aremet. Herzbergs needs are specifically job related and reflect some of the distinct thingsthat people want from their work as opposed to Maslows Hierarchy of Needs whichreflect all the needs in a persons life.Building on this model, Herzberg coined the term job enrichment — the process ofredesigning work in order to build in motivators by increasing both the number of tasks8
  • 9. Maslows Hierarchy of Needsthat an employee performs and the control over those tasks. It is associated with thedesign of jobs and is an extension of job enlargement (an increase in the number oftasks that an employee performs).McGregors Theory X and Theory YDouglas McGregor (1957) developed a philosophical view of humankind with his TheoryX and Theory Y — two opposing perceptions about how people view human behavior atwork and organizational life. McGregor felt that organizations and the managers withinthem followed either one or the other approach:Theory XPeople have an inherent dislike for work and will avoid it whenever possible.People must be coerced, controlled, directed, or threatened with punishment in order toget them to achieve the organizational objectives.People prefer to be directed, do not want responsibility, and have little or no ambition.People seek security above all else.In an organization with Theory X assumptions, managements role is to coerce andcontrol employees.Theory YWork is as natural as play and rest.People will exercise self-direction if they are committed to the objectives (they are NOTlazy).Commitment to objectives is a function of the rewards associated with theirachievement.People learn to accept and seek responsibility.Creativity, ingenuity, and imagination are widely distributed among the population.People are capable of using these abilities to solve an organizational problem.People have potential.9
  • 10. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsIn an organization with Theory Y assumptions, managements role is to develop thepotential in employees and help them to release that potential towards common goals.Theory X is the view that traditional management has taken towards the workforce.Most organizations are now taking the enlightened view of theory Y (even though theymight not be very good at it). A boss can be viewed as taking the theory X approach,while a leader takes the theory Y approach.Notice that Maslow, Herzberg, and McGregors theories all tie together:Herzbergs theory is a micro version of Maslows theory that is focused in the workenvironment.McGregors Theory X is based on workers caught in the lower levels (1 to 3) ofMaslows theory due to bad management practices, while his Theory Y is for workerswho have gone above level 3 with the help of management.McGregors Theory X is also based on workers caught in Herzbergs HygieneDissatisfies, while Theory Y is based on workers who are in the Motivators or Satisfierssection.Alderfers Existence/Relatedness/Growth(ERG)Clayton Alderfers (1969) Existence/Relatedness/Growth (ERG) Theory of Needspostulates that there are three groups of needs:10
  • 11. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsExistence - This group of needs is concerned with providing the basic requirements formaterial existence, such as physiological and safety needs. This need is satisfied bymoney earned in a job so that one may buy food, shelter, clothing, etc.Relationships - This group of needs centers upon the desire to establish and maintaininterpersonal relationships. Since people normally spend approximately half of theirwaking hours on the job, this need is normally satisfied to some degree by theircoworkers.Growth - These needs are met by personal development. A persons job, career, orprofession provides significant satisfaction of growth needs.Alderfers ERG theory states that more than one need may be influential at the sametime. If the gratification of a higher-level need is frustrated, the desire to satisfy a lower-level need will increase. He identifies this phenomenon as the "frustration & shyaggression dimension." Its relevance on the job is that even when the upper-level needsare frustrated, the job still provides for the basic physiological needs upon which onewould then be focused. If, at that point, something happens to threaten the job, thepersons basic needs are significantly threatened. If there are no factors present torelieve the pressure, the person may become desperate and panicky.Notice that Alderfers ERG theory is built upon Maslows, however it does differ. First hecollapses it from five needs to three. And unlike Maslow, he did not see these needs asbeing a hierarchy in which one climbs up, but rather being more of a continuum:While there has not been a lot of research on Alderfers theory, most contemporarytheories and related studies tend to give it stronger support than Maslows theory.Vrooms Expectancy TheoryVrooms Expectancy Theory (1964)states that an individual will act in a certain waybased on the expectation (belief) that the act will be followed by a given outcome andon the attractiveness of that outcome to the individual. This motivational model hasbeen modified by several people, to include Porter and Lawler (1968). VroomsExpectancy Theory is written as a formula:11
  • 12. Maslows Hierarchy of NeedsValence x Expectancy x Instrumentality = MotivationValence (Reward) = the amount of desire for a goal (What is the reward?)Expectancy (Performance) = the strength of belief that work related effort will result inthe completion of the task (How hard will I have to work to reach the goal?)Instrumentality (Belief) = the belief that the reward will be received once the task iscompleted (Will they notice the effort I put forth?)The product of valence, expectancy, and instrumentality is motivation. It can be thoughtof as the strength of the drive towards a goal. For example, if an employee wants tomove up through the ranks, then promotion has a high valence for that employee. If theemployee believes that high performance will result in good reviews, then the employeehas a high expectancy. However, if the employee believes the company will notpromote from within, then the employee has low instrumentality, and the employee willnot be motivated to perform better.And my personal opinion regarding Maslow theory that it support and change themanagement style in many fields but the main criticize was the needs limitation whichsolved in the updated theory dated 1971.References - Theory&id=4139037 -