Business Administration. Early theories of motivation

Business Administration. Early theories of motivation

Business Administration
Theory Question : Describe each of the four early theories of motivation
Written by
Volodumur Kim, Polina Sivachenko and Vlada Lebedieva

Early Theories of motivation

The early theories are important, because they present the foundation from which the contemporary motivation theories where developed and they can be still refer by managers. Among such theories are: Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, McGregor’s theories X and Y, Herzberg’s two-factors theory and McClelland’s three-needs theory.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

“Don’t wait for reaching the goal and successful results, when your employee is hungry!”

The psychologist Maslow had created the pyramid, which proposed to look at 5 main human needs from hierarchy perspective:
1. Physiological needs (food, drink, shelter…)
2. Safety needs (security and protection)
3. Social needs (Affection, belongings, acceptance, friendship)
4. Esteem needs (self-respect, autonomy, status, achievements, attention…)
5. Self-actualization (need for growth, achieving one’s potential, self-fulfillment)

Every person is capable and has the desire to move up the hierarchy toward a level of self-actualization. Unfortunately, progress is often disrupted by failure to meet lower level needs. Life experiences including divorce and loss of job may cause an individual to fluctuate between levels of the hierarchy.
McGregor’s theories X and Y
Douglas McGregor proposed theory "X" and the theory "Y", examining motivation of people from two opposite sides. Theory "X" says that the majority of people are not interested in responsibility and they are either working only for money or because of fear of the finite threats.
The theory "X":
People do not initially love to work and try to avoid any possibility of work;
People have no efforts, and they are trying to get rid of responsibility, preferring to their leadership;
More of everything people want 4security;
To make employees work, it...

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