Mcclelland's Theory

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McClelland Human Motivation Theory

In the early 1940s, Abraham Maslow created his theory of needs. This identified the basic needs that human beings have, in order of their importance – physiological needs; safety needs; and the needs for belonging, self-esteem and "self-actualization".

Then, in the early 1960s, David McClelland built on this work by identifying three motivators that we all have. According to McClelland, these motivators are learned (which is why this theory is sometimes called the Learned Needs Theory).

McClelland says that, regardless of our gender, culture, or age, we all have three motivating drivers, and one of these will be our dominant motivating driver. This dominant motivator is largely dependent on our culture and life experiences. The three motivators are achievement, affiliation, and power. People will have different characteristics depending on their dominant motivator. These characteristics are as follows •The need for achievement

The need for power and
The need for affiliation
The importance of each of these needs will vary from one person to another. If you can determine the importance of each of these needs to an individual, it will help you decide how to influence that individual. McClelland asserted that a person’s needs are influenced by their cultural background and life experiences. He also asserted that the majority of these needs can be classified as the needs for affiliation, achievement or power. A person’s motivation and effectiveness can be increased through an environment, which provides them with their ideal mix of each of the three needs The need for affiliation

This is the need for friendly relationships and human interaction. There is a need “to feel liked” and “accepted” by others. A person with a high need for affiliation is likely to be a team player and thrive in a customer services environment. They will perform best in a co-operative environment. McClelland said that a strong need for...
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