Maslow's Theory Adam's Case

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Adam is the design manager of a reasonably large company called IT Smarts. Most of the companies employees are happy working for the company because the company offered good career opportunities to its staff, as well as relatively high pay. One of Adam’s best programmers, Steve, has recently been asking Adam for an increase in his pay. After Steve’s first request for a pay rise, Adam increased Steve’s pay a little. After a month, however, Steve was back in Adam’s office, asking again for more pay. Adam felt this behaviour from one of his best workers, was strange. He decided to look into Steve’s situation.

Adam found that Steve had a good situation in his life. He had a young family, a nice house, and he seemed to enjoy his job. Adam wondered if Steve really wanted more money, or whether he actually simply wanted to be able to extend his abilities more widely and to have more responsibility in the company. He decided to offer Steve a new position as Creative Design Project Manager. His wage would be the same, but he would now be part of the management team, and involved in the planning of all the creative design projects of the company.

Steve was very happy with this solution, and stopped asking Adam for more money.  
When studying an area of management such as motivation (i.e. how to best get your employees working well), the main content of your study will be the most common or useful theories of worker motivation. Maslow’s theory (covered in lesson 2) is one such common theory.

When teaching Maslow’s theory, your teacher will give some examples of particular companies, or groups, and look at how you can understand them by ‘applying’ the theory.

For example, in lesson 2, it was mentioned that in current day Japan, there is a difficulty in finding workers to undertake difficult or dirty labour jobs, even though the pay for these jobs is quite high.

If we apply Maslow’s theory to this situation we can suggest that the reason this is...
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