People illustration People theory

Human needs and rewards

People being human need to be rewarded and encouraged for their endeavours. A number of researchers have investigated the link between motivation and reward. One of the most famous of these was Abraham Maslow who developed what is referred to as Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Studying this approach enables us to understand the sort of rewards that people need to receive in order to have these needs met.

Maslow's hierarchy of needs

Basic needs are for a kit of basic survival tools such as food, shelter and clothing.

Security needs are to feel safe and secure, free from harm.

Group needs involve the need to belong to a group or team, rather than to feel isolated and alone.

Self esteem needs are for a sense of prestige and self worth.

Self actualisation needs involve total self fulfilment through creativity, independence and doing what you enjoy.

It is possible to arrange a set of motivating rewards that are targeted at these different type of needs.

Basic level needs can be met by providing employees with a good standard of living through decent pay structures. Employees can then buy the items that enable them to have their basic needs met.

Security needs can be met by providing employees with a safe working environment and appropriate training to minimise any health and safety risks.

Group needs can be met by organising employees in appropriate team structures with good sets of communication links.

Self esteem needs can be met by rewarding employees with promotion and job titles, which are commensurate with their efforts.

Self-fulfilment needs can be met by encouraging employees to develop themselves, using appraisal as a tool to identify ways in which individuals can meet their highest order needs.

A reward package can be designed in such a way as to enable employees to meet a full range of human needs. By enabling this fulfilment of needs the employer will enable and encourage employees to be hard working and committed to the organisation.


Supporting Documents

These downloads will help to put people theory into context using real world examples from real businesses.

Using sports marketing to engage with consumers
Kia Motors logo

Find out how Kia Motors employed people theory to succeed in the automotive industry by downloading our premium case study.

Meeting customers' needs in growth markets - online gaming
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Learn how BT used people theory to prosper in the telecommunications industry by downloading our premium case study.

Re-focussing a company's culture and marketing mix
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Learn how Argos applied people theory to thrive in the retail industry by downloading our premium case study.

Live, breathe and wear passion
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Discover how Diesel applied people theory to prosper in the fashion industry by downloading our premium case study.

Creating the right marketing mix
Motorola logo

Find out how Motorola employed people theory to prosper in the telecommunications industry by downloading our premium case study.