Need Priority Model - Motivation - Organizational Behavior

There are two types of needs-basic and secondary or acquired. Basic needs are important for -survival whereas acquired needs are not so important. We know various needs as felt by a man but do not know about their preferential order. A .H. Maslow solved this problem and presented a theory on priority order of needs. Some important prepositions of Maslow's need priority model are as under.

1)     Man is wanting animal.

2)     A satisfied need is no longer a motivator, and

3)     Needs have hierarchy of importance.

Need hierarchy:  Maslow has presented the hierarchy of needs in the following order.

1)     Basic physiological needs: the needs that are taken as the starting point for motivation theory are the so-called physiological needs. These needs relate to the survival and maintenance of human life. These needs include such things as food, clothing shelter, air water and other necessaries of life.

2)     Safety and security needs: after satisfying the physiological needs, people want the assurance of maintaining a given economic level. They want job security, security of source of income, provision for old age, insurance against risks, etc.

3)     Social needs: man is social being. He is, therefore, interested in conversation, sociability, exchange of feelings and grievances, companionship, recognition, belongingness, etc. non-satisfaction of this level of needs may affect the mental health of the individual.

4)     Ego (esteem and status) needs: egoistic needs can take inward and outward orientation. Inward directed ego needs embrace such things as self-confidence, independence, achievement, competence, knowledge and success. They have to be earned by the in individual himself through his intelligence and hard work. They lead to 'earned recognition' by the society. Outwardly directed ego needs are concerned with prestige, status and other marks of respect because of some position in the organization or control over economic, social and political power.

5)     Self-realization needs: the final step under the need priority mode is the need for self-fulfillment or the need to fulfill what a person considers to be his mission in life. It involves realizing one's potentialities for continued self-development and for being creative in the broadest sense of the work. After his other needs are fulfilled, a man has the despite for personal achievement. He wants to do something which is challenging and since this challenge gives him enough dash and initiative to work, it is beneficial to him in particular and to the society in general. The sense of achievement gives him psychological satisfaction.

Maslow has further classified the needs as lower order needs and higher order needs. First two needs in the hierarchical order are lower needs and rests three are higher order needs.

Critical appraisal of the model: the model is very simple and helps in understanding the human behavior of people at work but it has certain limitations.

1)     Model may not be applicable at all times, in all places and in all circumstances.

2)     There are many determinants of behavior other than needs.

3)     Motivation is not a result of single need.

4)     One needs dies not lead all people to the same behavior.

5)     Hierarchical order is not rigid.

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