Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation As Well As Herzberg’s, McClelland’s, and Vroom’s .

Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation

  1. Physiological Needs (Base of the Pyramid)
  2. Safety Needs
  3. Need To Belong
  4. Need To Be Esteemed
  5. Self Actualization (Tip of the Pyramid)

Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation may be considered old school motivation theory, but its still relevant and foundational

Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation is probably the most popular of the motivational theories.

It can help to look at some research from the study of motivational theory from several scientists from the past that chose to study human motivational theory.

Understanding the research on motivation can help you to understand your life and actions better. When you understand this scientific work and relate it to yourself, you’ll create a situation where you understand how motivation works for you and how to get motivated any time you need it.

There are essentially four basic thoughts regarding motivation.

  1. Maslows Hierarchy of Needs
  2. Herzberg’s Dual-Factor Theory
  3. McClelland’s “The Need for Achievement”
  4. Vroom’s Expectancy Theory of Motivation

About Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation 

Abraham Maslow created a motivation model that states individuals are motivated by different types of needs depending on how pressing they are. For example:before one can worry about their self-esteem or do what they love they must first satisfy the basic needs of hunger, safety, and affection.

In other words, if you’re struggling to live safely, and keep food on the table, it’s going to be very hard for you to feel successful or reach for more because you’re just scrapping at the bottom. It’s not easy to save for a rainy day if every day there is a storm. It’s important to be able to differentiate needs vs. wants and to understand where you are on the spectrum.

How Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation differs from Herzberg’s Dual-Factor Theory

This theory says there are two factors in the workplace and life that cause you to be satisfied or dissatisfied and that each is completely independent of each other. For example, if you have a job that makes you feel useful, your employer is kind and appreciates you, but you aren’t paid much, you can still be satisfied.

However, you could make a ton of money, be treated poorly and be miserable. Money doesn’t always equate to success, depending upon the situation. That’s why it’s important to define what success means to you.


  1. What's Blocking Your Motivation
  2. How To Increase Motivation
  3. Self Awareness and Self Motivation
  4. Motivational Self Talk Examples

How Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation differs from McClelland’s “The Need for Achievement”

According to McClelland, every individual has a unique need for achievement. The reward should be structured for the individual. Not everyone has a need to be publicly recognized, for example. For some, knowing that if they succeeded, they would be in the public eye (even just among co-workers) would lower their motivation to achieve.

He also believed that everyone had different needs and wants based on where they were in life, similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

However, McClelland believed that we all have three motivators in life:

  • The need for achievement,
  • The need for affiliation and the
  • The need for power.

We are usually dominant in only one of these areas and that drives us. For example, if you are “affiliation” dominant, you want to belong to the group, be liked, prefer collaboration, and don’t like uncertainty or high-risk situations.

How Maslows Hierarchy Theory of Motivation differs from Vroom’s Expectancy Theory of Motivation 

Vroom believed:

  • Every human wants to minimize pain and maximize pleasure and
  • Increased effort will lead to increased performance and thus more motivation because the more you experience success the more you want success.

But, not everyone has the right skills, resources, or support in life to experience these things.

Therefore, the ability to identify what is missing and can fill that missing piece of the puzzle will create more success and thus more motivation.

The lesson is that you must know what works for you, why it works for you, and how to repeat it when you need it to build more motivation toward reaching your goals and experiencing success.

Discovering the roadblocks, you set up for yourself, or that another person has placed in your path, and how to overcome them will set you up for the success you desire.


  1. What's Blocking Your Motivation
  2. How To Increase Motivation
  3. Self Awareness and Self Motivation
  4. Motivational Self Talk Examples

About the Artwork Featured in the Headings on this Site: If you like the awesome artwork that you see on these pages, check out these Artists' Etsy shops:


  • National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255


 Join Subscriber List. Get A Free E-book