Neo Freudian Personality Theory - Organization Behavior

There were several Freud's colleagues who disagreed with his rigid adherence to consider only the basic biological or instinctive as determinants. According to these neo-Freudian's, social relationships played a vital role in the formation and development of personality.

For instance, Alfred alder viewed human beings as seeking to attain various rational goals, which he called style of life. He also placed much emphasis on the individual's efforts to overcome feelings of inferiority (i.e., to strive for superiority).

Harry stack Sullivan, another neo-Freudian, stressed that people continuously attempt to establish significant and rewarding relationship with others. He was particularly concerned with the individual's efforts to reduce tensions, such as anxiety.

Like Sullivan, Karen Horney was also interested in anxiety. She focused on the impact of child-parent. Relationships, especially the individual's despite to conquer feelings of anxiety. Horney proposed the individuals be classified into three personality groups: complaint, aggressive, and detached.

I. Compliant individuals are those who move towards others (they desire to be loved, wanted, and appreciated).

II. Aggressive individuals are those who move against others (they desire to excel and win admiration).

III. Detached individuals are those who move from others (they desire independence, self-reliance, self-sufficiency, and freedom from obligations).

Although the neo Freudians did not have influence in the field of marketing, many of the advertisements indicate that marketers have been using neo Freudian theory intuitively. Ads depicting products or services which provide an opportunity to belong, be appreciated by others or social group setting are being portrayed as a compliant individuals.

For example, advertisements of close-up confidence, Rexona deodorant, lifebuoy plus soap, denim after shave, old spice deodorant, Godrej hair dye, etc. help in creating self confidence or in reducing anxiety.

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