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sâmbătă, 20 februarie 2010

INDIVIDUAL MOTIVATION- CONTENT THEORIES OF MOTIVATION


The performance that employers look for in individuals rests on ability, motivation, and the support individuals receive; however, motivation is often the missing variable. Motivation is the desire within a person causing that person to act. People usually act for one reason: to reach a goal. Thus, motivation is a goaldirected drive, and it seldom occurs in a void. The words need, want, desire, and drive are all similar to motive, from which the word motivation is derived. Understanding motivation is important because performance, reaction to compensation, and other HR concerns are related to motivation. Approaches to understanding motivation differ because many individual theorists have developed their own views and theories. They approach motivation from different starting points, with different ideas in mind, and from different backgrounds. No one approach is considered to be the “ultimate.” Each approach has contributed to the understanding of human motivation.
Content theories of motivation are concerned with the needs that people are attempting to satisfy. The most well-known theories are highlighted briefly next.
MASLOW’S HIERARCHY OF NEEDS One theory of human motivation that has received a great deal of exposure in the past was developed by Abraham Maslow. In this theory, Maslow classified human needs into five categories that ascend in a definite order. Until the more basic needs are adequately fulfilled, a person will not strive to meet higher needs. Maslow’s well-known hierarchy is composed of (1) physiological needs, (2) safety and security needs, (3) belonging and love needs, (4) esteem needs, and (5) self-actualization needs.
An assumption often made by those using Maslow’s hierarchy is that workers
in modern, technologically advanced societies basically have satisfied their physiological, safety, and belonging needs. Therefore, they will be motivated by the needs for self-esteem, esteem of others, and then self-actualization. Consequently, conditions to satisfy these needs should be present at work; the job itself should be meaningful and motivating.
HERZBERG’S MOTIVATION/HYGIENE THEORY Frederick Herzberg’s motivation/hygiene theory assumes that one group of factors, motivators, accounts for high levels of motivation. Another group of factors, hygiene, or maintenance factors, can cause discontent with work.
The implication of Herzberg’s research for management and HR practices is that although managers must carefully consider hygiene factors in order to avoid employee dissatisfaction, even if all these maintenance needs are addressed, people may not be motivated to work harder. Only motivators cause
employees to exert more effort and thereby attain more productivity, and this
theory suggests that managers should utilize the motivators as tools to enhance
employee performance.

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