Maslow’s theory is grounded on satisfying needs in order of: 1) physiological needs (lunch breaks, wages, etc), 2) safety needs (medical insurance, job security, etc), 3) social needs (sense of community, social events, etc), 4) esteem needs (recognize achievement, show appreciation, etc), and 5) self actualization (provide challenges, opportunity to reach potential, etc). According to Maslow, a person starts with meeting physiological needs and must work up to self-actualization. An important limitation to note is that “there is evidence that contradicts the order of needs specified by the model.” Furthermore, “some cultures appear to place social needs before any others” (Netmba 3). The most important implication for management in Maslow’s theory is the manager’s ability to recognize the needs level at which the employee is operating in order to motivate. For example, if a group or individual is operating on the basic needs of physiological and safety, a good levering tool for motivation would be to offer an office party once a goal is met.
Herzberg’s Two Factor Theory
Herzberg’s Two Factor Theory is a “content theory” similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy Theory. Herzberg suggested a two-step approach to understanding employee motivation and satisfaction including hygiene factors and motivator factors. Hygiene factors ensure that an employee does not become dissatisfied. These include, but are not limited to, wages and salaries, policy and administration, quality of supervision and inter-personal relations, working conditions, and job security. “Meeting hygiene factors does not lead to high levels of motivation” (Value Based Management 1). Motivation factors lead to psychological growth and job satisfaction. These include, but are not limited to, status, advancement opportunity, gaining recognition, responsibility, stimulating work, and the sense of personal growth and achievement in a job. Motivation factors must be present to motivate an employee into higher performance. Management should “focus on rearranging work so that motivator factors can take effect” (Cuthers, 2). He said this could be done through job enlargement, job rotation, and/or job enrichment. For example, in a low hygiene-high motivation situation, workers are challenged but salaries and work conditions are not up to standards. By adding some hygiene factors, such as a slight increase in wages and a cleaner, safer working environment, management would be motivated and have fewer complaints.
McClellan’s Need Theory
David McClellan proposed that an individual’s needs are specific and acquired over time and life experience. Most of these needs can be classified as achievement, affiliation, or power. “A person’s motivation and effectiveness in certain job functions are influenced by these three needs” (Peace 2). People who measure a high need for achievement are less likely to take risks because they seek to excel. They prefer work with a fair probability of success and need regular feedback to monitor their progress. Affiliation seekers value pleasant relationships with others and have a high need for acceptance. They prefer jobs with a lot of personal interaction and tend to conform to their work group. Employees who have a high need for power fall into two categories – personal power seekers and institutional power seekers. Those who want personal power tend to direct others. Those who prefer institutional power “want to organize the efforts of others to further the goal of the organization” (Peace 3). McClelland’s theory allows for the shaping of a person’s needs and management should learn to recognize different profiles. For example, a person with a high need for personal power will probably fail in a position that is associated with a high need for affiliation.
McGregor’s Theory X and Theory Y
Douglas McGregor proposed two theories...