Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
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What is Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs?
Psychologist Abraham Maslow proposed the hierarchy of needs. He presented the needs as a pyramid representing the evolution of needs in a hierarchy.
Pursuant to his theory, individuals seek to meet lower-level needs before moving on to higher-level needs.
At the bottom of the pyramid is Basic Human Needs. Once these are satisfied, we then begin to look for higher-order needs.
The hierarchy proceeds as follows:
- Physiological needs - These are the basic needs to sustain life - air, food, and water.
- Safety - This is the need to be free from danger, pain, or loss.
- Social - Social needs are synonymous with relationship needs. They concern the need to interact with other humans, to form relationships, and share emotions.
- Esteem - Esteem concerns the desire to feel important and appreciated by others.
- Self-actualization - This concerns improving one's self by acquiring new skills, taking on new challenges, and behaving in a way that will lead to the satisfaction of one's life goals. In summary, it is becoming all you are capable of becoming.
An individual may experience a combination of these needs at any time. This is because they affect different aspects (physical and mental) of the individual.
Understanding an individual's need structure allows a leader to understand what will motivate an individual to pursue a course of conduct that will satisfy those needs. For example, a person's physiological needs may be met simply through compensation.
Safety may be met by job security.
Social needs may be met by having a family, friends, or other routine acquaintances (such as close colleagues).
A person's esteem needs are more likely to require meaningful work, authority or power, recognition, or status.
Self-actualization is the most difficult as it requires the individual be afforded the opportunity to move forward in their own direction.
Any of these scenarios may be within the authority of the leader to provide - thus allowing the leader to motivate the subordinate.
Academic Research on Maslow's Hierarchy
- Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Maslow's hierarchy of needs, McLeod, S. (2007). Maslow's hierarchy of needs.Simply Psychology,1.
- Rediscovering the later version of Maslow's hierarchy of needs: Self-transcendence and opportunities for theory, research, and unification., Koltko-Rivera, M. E. (2006). Rediscovering the later version of Maslow's hierarchy of needs: Self-transcendence and opportunities for theory, research, and unification.Review of general psychology,10(4), 302. The conventional description of Abraham Maslow's (1943, 1954) hierarchy of needs is inaccurate as a description of Maslow's later thought. Maslow (1969a) amended his model, placing self-transcendence as a motivational step beyond self-actualization. Objections to this reinterpretation are considered. Possible reasons for the persistence of the conventional account are described.
- Maslow's hierarchy of needs, Huitt, W. (2004). Maslow's hierarchy of needs.Educational psychology interactive.
- Herzberg's theory of motivation andMaslow's hierarchy of needs, Gawel, J. E. (1997). Herzberg's theory of motivation and Maslow's hierarchy of needs.Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation,5(11), 3. This paper briefly outlines both Frederick Herzberg and Abraham Maslow behavioural theories and then summarizes a study of the Tennessee Career Ladder Program (TCLP), which suggested that teachers in this career development program do not match the behavior of employees in business.
- The need to belong: RediscoveringMaslow's hierarchy of needs., Kunc, N. (1992). The need to belong: Rediscovering Maslow's hierarchy of needs. This paper explores Abraham Maslows theory of a hierarchy of human needs.
- TestingMaslow's hierarchy of needs: National quality-of-life across time, Hagerty, M. R. (1999). Testing Maslow's hierarchy of needs: National quality-of-life across time.Social Indicators Research,46(3), 249-271. This paper shows the use of the Maslow's hierarchy-of-needs theory in predicting development of Quality of Life (QOL) in countries over time.
- Meeting employee requirements:Maslow's hierarchy of needsis still a reliable guide to motivating staff, Sadri, G., & Bowen, C. R. (2011). Meeting employee requirements: Maslow's hierarchy of needs is still a reliable guide to motivating staff.Industrial engineer,43(10), 44-49. The article focuses on the use of Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory which is still a reliable guide to motivating employees.
- Maslow's hierarchy of needs, Maslow, A., & Lewis, K. J. (1987). Maslow's hierarchy of needs.Salenger Incorporated,14, 987.
- ReshapingMaslow's hierarchy of needsto reflect today's educational and managerial philosophies., Kiel, J. M. (1999). Reshaping Maslow's hierarchy of needs to reflect today's educational and managerial philosophies.Journal of Instructional Psychology,26(3). This article presents a debate of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs theory to reflect that in today's world, a closed triangle is not a valid representation. Instead, an open, wide faced structure is needed to better reflect that self actualization is never ending.
- Exploring the relationship between money attitudes andMaslow's hierarchy of needs, Oleson, M. (2004). Exploring the relationship between money attitudes and Maslow's hierarchy of needs.International journal of consumer studies,28(1), 83-92. This study explores the relationship between basic human needs and money attitudes in a university-age cohort utilizing Maslow's theory of hierarchical needs. Results confirmed relationships between needs and money attitudes.The paper further discusses the implications of utilizing this theory and possible areas for future research.
- Maslow's hierarchy of needsand personality, Lester, D. (1990). Maslow's hierarchy of needs and personality.Personality and Individual Differences,11(11), 1187-1188.