Motivation is the process of stimulating people to act in ways which serve the needs of the organization providing the stimulus. Simply put, motivation is discovering and applying whatever is needed to get the employee to carry out designated activities in specified ways. However, a clear distinction is made between attitude, which is a state of mind, and behavior, which is a state of action.
A milestone in the relationship between the behavioral scientist and the manager was the "Hawthorne Experiments". In that project, behavioral scientists were invited to a large plant to help explain some employee behavior phenomena which were baffling to the managers. The success in this collaboration was achieved in a setting which included the following elements: 1) The study was a joint undertaking between behavioral scientists and practicing managers. 2) The locale of study was the factory, not the psychological laboratory. 3) The problem studied was not staged; it consisted of real life. 4) The tools used for study were the analytical tools of the behavioral scientists, not the empiricism of the managers.
All behavioral scientists agree that human beings act in response to stimuli which appeal to their internal needs and drives. Obviously, it is important to understand just what kinds of stimuli are effective. While the behavioral scientists agree the needs are multiple and that they are unequal in importance, they do not agree on the order of priorities or on the relative importance of potential stimuli. According to Maslow, people have and tend to satisfy the following five basic needs: Physiological: food, clothing. Shelter, which people satisfy before all others, Security: safety and stability, absence of pain, Threat and illness. Affiliation: desire for friendship, love, and belonging. Esteem: self-respect, personal achievement, and recognition from others. Self-actualization: personal growth, self-fulfillment, and...
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