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Motivation in the Workplace applying Maslow and Herzberg theories

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The motivation process behind the management team of XXXX consists of the respected theories of Abraham Maslow and Fredrick Herzberg. Using Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and Herzberg’s motivation-hygiene supposition, this company compounds the necessity to encourage effective productivity of its employees to provide efficient service to consumers. According to Keogh (2003),

Motivation is one of the most loaded nouns in the English language. It has intrinsic negative, as well as positive, connotation and its trigger is different for each individual. In a corporate context, well-motivated employees can enhance a company. Those with poor motivation can generate serious workplace problems. (p.16)

The purpose of this assignment is to examine how XXXX draws upon the success of its employees by motivating them to perform well through the application of Maslow and Herzberg’s motivational theories and the details involved in the process.

This new concept of the XXXX drive through installation process has met with an unbelievable response from the public. The number of units installed since the start of business far exceeds the projected numbers. Management and employees are pleased with store performance and management is going to provide the employees with a production bonus that will reward the employees for all of their hard work.

The employees need rewards because they have been working long hours and spending much time away from their families in the process of opening the new stores. The first reward they will receive relates to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The employees feel rewarded with a high amount of self-esteem and a feeling of accomplishment for a job well done. This also ties in with self-actualization as the employees have endured the many hardships of opening a new business. Both of these needs are part of Maslow’s higher order need because they encompass more that just basic survival.

The next part of the reward process for the employees involves the Motivation-Hygiene theory from Frederick Herzberg. The aspects covered here are hygiene-factors. These factors encompass the company policy, supervision, working conditions and salary. The employees, having brand new stores in which to work are happy with the working conditions. The management, from the start, wanted to make sure that employees are happy with their jobs, so management provides bonuses in pay to the employees for all of their hard work. With all of this hard work, the employees feel they have a sense of job security because sales from the sunroof installations have been better than projected.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs states that people find motivation by having needs satisfied (Piselo, 2003, p. 49). Certain basic requirements must first be addressed, such as food, shelter and clothing. However, other desires emerge once individuals fill these needs. Higher needs on the pyramid developed by Maslow are love, self-esteem and finally, self-actualization.

XXXX provides its employees with the means to provide food, shelter, and clothing for themselves and their families. However, the company seeks to provide more than just basic needs for its employees. As Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs demonstrates, once these lower requirements are fulfilled, higher needs become manifest. Sunroofs-R-Us seeks to fulfill the higher needs of its employees.

Specifically, each employee completes an attitude survey. This survey asks the employee which portion of the job and the accompanying reward package are most motivational to the employee. Secondly, the assessment asks employees if they feel the company meets individual needs. This organization conducts this survey at the employee’s yearly review to provide management with the necessary information to continue to satisfy each employee’s necessities.

After completion of the survey, management determines the general desires of the workforce. Since the employees of XXXX are mostly comprised of labor workers, there is not much diversity in the needs of the employees (Coles, 2001, p. 3). For example, most workers prefer more money or more leisure time. Consequently, the company created a bonus system based on productivity wherein each employee has the opportunity to earn a higher income or more vacation days. This allows each employee to spend the additional time or money with their families, thereby paving the way for the fulfillment of the higher needs of love and self-esteem. This leads the way for the individual to reach the final level of self-actualization, the highest level on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Frederick Herzberg’s theory of Motivation-Hygiene is seemingly simple. Herzberg breaks his theory into two parts. The hygiene factors include work conditions, interpersonal relationships, and supervision. These factors affect the employees extrinsically, which causes dissatisfaction within their job. The second part of the Motivation-hygiene theory is the motivational factors like achievement, recognition, and responsibility. These factors affect the employee intrinsically stimulating job satisfaction. For there to be job satisfaction, the motivators must out weigh the hygiene factors. In addition, when no factors are present, management will not achieve satisfaction or dissatisfaction.

Now that we know what Frederick Herzberg’s theory of Motivation-Hygiene is, we can discuss how it applies to XXXX employees. Management at XXXX understands that hygiene factors can potentially cause dissatisfaction among their employees, which in turn can lead to the loss of productivity and profitability. Therefore, they gave their employees Herzberg’s theory assessment. With these results, the company is able to provide competitive pay and bonuses that can motivate employees to work harder XXXX believes that rewarding hard working employees satisfies the motivating factor of job security. The company confirms this with pay incentives. Moreover, Management realizes that work conditions could play an integral part of their business success, not only for their employees, but for their customers as well. In addition to the brand new facilities, they also use state of the art cleaning materials that clean and make any surface resistant to dirt and decay. It is the goal of XXXX to maintain job satisfaction from all of its employees by increasing motivators and decreasing hygiene factors by constantly evaluating themselves through their employees.

An overwhelming amount of evidence exists that shows the effectiveness of the efforts of XXXX management to motivate their employees. The employees of XXXX are extremely motivated. To gauge the effectiveness of their motivational efforts, management frequently surveys employees to ascertain their level of job satisfaction. A company Pulse Survey provided feedback that indicated nine out of ten employees were satisfied or extremely satisfied with their jobs. Eighty-seven percent of employees surveyed said they would recommend employment with XXXX to a friend or family member. Asked to describe what particular factors went in to this decision, most employees of XXXX stated that the hands-on, caring approach of XXXX management was the main factor. They went on to describe the working environment as comfortable and rewarding. Nearly all employees stated they often or always receive praise from management and recognition for good job performance. They reported associating job satisfaction with feelings of appreciation from the company.

They described these feelings as highly motivating and noted them as significant factors that kept their performance at a superior level. Surveyed employees go on to describe a sense of family atmosphere when asked to detail their level of satisfaction with their job. Nine out of ten employees consistently characterize themselves as well paid. A statistically insignificant number of employees report under paid wages and the majority consider themselves reasonably or better compensated for their services. Because of these surveys, and the overwhelming success and incredibly high output of each XXXX facility, management continues to motivate their employees by tending to both their hierarchal needs as described by Maslow and by minimizing their job dissatisfaction with hygiene factors and maximizing job satisfaction with motivating factors.

Motivating employees is one of the most important issues facing any company today. The need to instill employees with motivation is becoming ever more important especially with the shift towards a more socially and culturally responsive workforce. It is clear that organizations need motivational plans that motivate, provide desired incentives, and keep managers involved in the process, which will result in increased value to the organization. The times of sitting back and just allowing the work to happen without any sort of guidance or support are gone. A properly structured motivation plan that involves all parties concerned is of vital importance. Allowing management to provide constant feedback, incentives and the ability to change are all a part of this plan. XXXX believes that the motivation plan can be the first step in expanding the boundaries of individual and group performance. If these theories are used and changes made to fit each unique situation that may arise this motivational plan can provide many rewards and the organization will benefit. Management must keep employees motivated. Proper motivation is the key to success in business and the key to the continued success and profitability of XXXX.


Coles, Sarah. (October, 2001). Satisfying Basic Needs. Employee Benefits, p.3. Retrieved December 5, 2003 from http://web4.epnet.com/

Keogh, O. (2003, May 25). Learning to be a Mr. Motivator: [Final 1 Edition].

The Sunday Times. Retrieved December 2, 2003 from ProQuest database.

Pisello, Tom. (August 25, 2003). Anticipating IT Needs in Pyramidal Steps. Computerworld, 37 (34), p. 49. Retrieved December 5, 2003, from http://web13.epnet.com/

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