Theories of Motivation

Douglas McGregor, in his Theory X of motivation proposed that people's main motivational factors are money and security. Abraham Maslow came up with the hierarchy of needs and proposed that people's needs can be represented in a pyramid. Maslow argued that human beings have more needs than just money and security. According to Maslow's theory, money and security belong to one section of the hierarchy of human needs (Bass, 13). After further examination of the human nature, Douglas McGregor believed that Theory X was an incorrect representation of motivational factors.

McGregor's Theory X has a limited number of motivation variables. Human beings cannot be motivated by money and security alone; because there are more needs that they desire to satisfy. The systematic analysis of human beings reveals consistency in needs satisfaction process according to Maslow's hierarchy. Human wants act as motivational factors when they are hierarchically satisfied. Abraham Maslow argued that basic needs must be satisfied first, and then secondary wants to follow suit. McGregor did not provide any order of needs satisfaction in his theory X. He, therefore, realized that providing security to a person without shelter would be worthless. Although money can buy things that can satisfy all other needs, there must be a period of transition from one social stratum to another (Tey and Diener, 19). While supporting his theory, Abraham Maslow categorized human needs into five categories. These are physiological needs, safety needs, belonging needs, esteem needs and self-actualization (Bass, 11). He outdid McGregor's theory by arranging these needs in a systematic order, hence representing the exact nature of a person in a natural setting.

Abraham Maslow portrayed human beings as ever motivated and always striving to meet their desires provided that they identify them. According to Maslow, only unsatisfied needs have the power to influence action. The Theory X was disapproved because it was not based on proper tenets of motivation.