Job Design and Satisfaction
Maslow’s and McClelland’s Need Theories
In an organization or company, it is essential for people to know and have a role model for them to be able to work productively and efficiently. There are two different theories that explain how people can be motivated and reach a job satisfaction at work. The first theory is called the Maslow’s theory. Abraham Maslow saw human needs in the form of a hierarchy, ascending from the lowest to the highest. He concluded that when one set of needs is pleased, this kind of need ceases to be a motivator. The first set of needs pertains to the physiological needs which sustain human life, such as food, water, warmth and shelter. The next set of needs involves one’s security or safety which refers to the need to be far from physical danger and fear of losing a job, property, food, or shelter. The third need in Maslow’s hierarchy pertains to the social needs.
This is the need to belong and be accepted by other people through friendship, acceptance, and affection. Esteem is the fourth need in Maslow’s rank. It refers to the need to acquire self confidence, achievements, attention, and recognition from other people. After every need has been fulfilled, the need for self-actualization surfaces, the highest in Maslow’s theory. Self-actualization relates to a person’s being, growth, and self fulfillment (Horsley, 2008).
On the other hand, McClelland’s need theory focuses on three types of motivating needs: the need for power, need for affiliation, and need for achievement. Essentially, people need power to control and love to be at the center. They are demanding in nature and very ambitious. On the other hand, while the need for affiliation refers to people who are very social in nature, people want to be associated with other individual and groups which motivate them to work. The last need refers to fulfilling an achievement. People are driven by the challenge of working, and they are afraid to make mistakes and fail (Horsley, 2008).
In comparing Maslow’s and McClelland’s theories, despite their differences, one would notice their similarities in terms of their attempt to discover how people can be motivated and function well in an organization.
Four Intrinsic Rewards
Intrinsic motivation comes in varying forms, but generally, they fall under any of the “Four Intrinsic Rewards.” These are sense of choice, sense of competence, sense of meaningfulness, and sense of progress. Sense of choice is basically having a choice over what a person does. In sense of competence, an individual is challenged by his or her capacity to accomplish a task. On the other hand, sense of meaningfulness pertains to working with fulfillment and liking the job. Finally, sense of progress involves an individual’s desire to reach and aim something high in the workplace (“The Four Rewards of Intrinsic Motivation,” 2008).
Through the different motivational theories, managers would be able to encourage their employees to perform well. These theories will serve as a guide and information to managers on how to keep employees satisfied and motivated with their job. By knowing these motivational theories, organizations would be able address, or better yet, avoid problems and difficulties among people in a company. If motivation is focused on the existence of unfulfilled needs, then it is meaningful for a manager to recognize which needs the individual employees value the most and use this knowledge in motivating them.
Horsley, Paul (2008). Motivation. Cool-info. Retrieved October 6, 2008 from
The Four Rewards of Intrinsic Motivation. (2008). Ceo Flow. Retrieved October 6,
2008 from http://ceoflow.com/2008/08/12/the-four-rewards-of-intrinsic-motivation/