Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Theory

1040 words 5 pages
Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Theory

Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is one of the first theories of motivation and probably the best-known one.
It was first presented in 1943. in Dr. Abraham Maslow’s article "A Theory of Human Motivation" in Psychological Review, and was further expanded in his book “Toward a Psychology of Being”. Maslow tried to formulate a needs-based framework of human motivation. His research was based upon his clinical experiences with humans, rather than prior psychology theories from authors such as Freud and B.F. Skinner, which were largely theoretical or based upon animal behaviour.

The basis of Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Theory is that people are motivated by needs that remain
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Lower order needs are satisfied externally (with salary, union contract etc.), whereas higher-order needs are satisfied internally (within the person).

Limitations and Criticism
Though Maslow's hierarchy makes sense intuitively, little empirical evidence supports his needs hierarchy. Recent research challenges the order that the needs are imposed by Maslow's pyramid.
Most criticism is focused on the fact that Maslow has conducted his research on US employees. So hierarchy of needs is based on their preferences. As an example, in some cultures, social needs are placed more fundamentally than any others (eg. Nordic countries). Security needs are on the top of the hierarchy in countries where uncertainty-avoidance characteristics are strong (Japan, Greece, Mexico).
Additionally, little evidence suggests that people satisfy exclusively one motivating need at a time, other than situations where needs conflict.

Business Management Implications
Maslow’s theory is logical and easy to understand, that is why it is widely used by managers worldwide. There are important considerations for management including insights into the best way to motivate employees, vendors, clients and customers.
An important thing to understand is that everyone is not motivated by the same needs. At various points in their lives and careers, various employees will be motivated by completely different needs. It is imperative that managers recognize


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