The Needs of Abraham II. Maslow A dysfunctional or hierarchical theory of motivation
The behavioural psychologists A.H. Maslow and Frederick Herzberg, whose published writings are known as the Bible of Motivation, have supplied the philosophical underpinnings for the majority of motivational thought. Although Maslow himself did not apply his theory to industrial situations, it has a wide impact far beyond academic circles. Douglas MacGregor has used Maslow’s theory to interpret specific problems in personnel administration and industrial relations.
The core of Maslow’s theory is that there are five kinds of human needs that are ordered in a hierarchy. The lowest level needs are physiological and the highest level is the self-actualization needs. Maslow starts with the formulation that man is a wanting animal with a hierarchy of needs, of which some are lower in scale and some are in a larger scale or system of values. Higher needs develop as the lower demands are met. Lower wants must be met before higher needs can be satisfied. An outcome that is satisfied is not a motivator. This is similar to the traditional theory of diminishing returns in economics. I tie the hierarchy of needs at work in the individual, is today a rout me “tool of the personal motivators. When these requirements are met, they serve as strong motivators and behaviour conditioners.
Hierarchy of Needs: The following two models list the five primary needs of men, in the following order of importance and function: physiological requirements, safety needs, social needs, ego needs, and self-realization or self-actualization needs.
The above five basic needs are regarded as striving needs that make a person do things. The first model shows how the various demands are ranked. The second is more useful in showing how the fulfilment of lower wants serves as a foundation for the fulfilment of higher needs. It also demonstrates how the number of people who have met their higher demands eventually declines.
Physiological or Body Needs: The person climbs the ladder by first attending to their physiological demands for sustenance, clothing, and shelter. These physical requirements must be compared to pay rates, pay procedures, and to some extent, the physical requirements of the position. Do not the flower children call money “bread”? To the hungry man food is God, as observed by Mahatma Gandhi.
Safety: The next order of needs is safety need, the need to be free from danger, either from other people or from the environment. The individual wants to be assured, once his bodily needs are satisfied, that they are secure and will continue to be satisfied for the foreseeable future. The needs for safety can include protection from disease, bad luck, old age, etc., as well as protection from workplace injuries. Safety regulations, social security measures, protective labour legislation, and collective bargaining agreements typically cover these needs.
Social Needs: As a person’s demands increase, they feel a need to collaborate with others and form a sense of identity and belonging to a community. He is driven by the want to love and be loved as well as the desire to belong to and identify with a group. It is difficult to establish social ties in a big organisation. However, it is possible to establish close bonds with at least some coworkers. Every employee wants to feel like he belongs and is not an outsider in a hostile environment.
Ego or Esteem Needs: Our desire for status, respect, and prestige in the workplace or workgroup, such as that which is granted by the acknowledgment of one’s merit through promotion, involvement in management, and the satisfaction of a worker’s urge for self-expression, reflects these requirements. Some of the needs—such as the need for success, self-assurance, knowledge, competence, etc.—have to do with one’s sense of self-worth. This is a compliment for a job well done in the workplace. But more important, it means a feeling by the employee that at all times he has the respect of his supervisor as a person and as a contributor to the organization’s goal.
Self-realization or Self-actualisation Needs: This upper-level need is one which when satisfied makes the employee give up dependence on others or the environment. They become growth-oriented, self-directed, detached, and creative. This need reflects a state defined in terms of the extent to which an individual attains his personal goal. This is the need, which lies within oneself and there is no demand from any external situation or person. To paraphrase Maslow, “If he is to be ultimately happy, a musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write.” What a guy must be is what he can be. This need we may call self-actualization”. He has “the desire to become everything one can become, to be more and more what one is.” In a genuine sense, self-realization is uncommon within an organisation. However, the creativity of a man in producing new and practical ideas, bringing about productivity, innovation, and reducing costs might satisfy some of these needs. Overall, Maslow’s theory is important, and he may be true that basic wants that are satiated operate as disincentives, but his logic is not without errors. Even the most fundamental demands are rarely adequately met for the majority of executives or workers in the industrial sector. Some of these needs are very continuous while others are recurring. They may differ, for example, from a tiny flat to a larger one or from a little car to a larger one, but they still exist. Additionally, as was already noted, the industrial scene is not exactly suited to gratifying higher needs, especially the urge for self-actualization. A highly dedicated and committed executive may have a highly developed sense of responsibility, but may not need self-actualization.