Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in the Workplace

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Are you looking for a way to apply Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs in the workplace? If you are looking for that information, we highly suggest you read this entire article. Here we are going to explain about how to apply Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs in the workplace.


Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs includes 5 levels of human needs which allow an individual to feel fulfilled. It is frequently applied to the workplace as a means to identify how to more effectively motivate employees and ensure their needs are met. Understanding this hierarchy will be able to help you determine whether your needs are met in your workplace and how you are able to meet the needs of your team. Thus, in this page, we are going to explain Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and how it applies in the workplace.

What is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

You have to know that Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is a motivational theory in psychology. Also, this Maslow’s hierarchy referred to as Maslow’s theory of motivation includes 5 levels of human needs. Within each level are specific needs which allow for an individual to feel fulfilled. The hierarchy is frequently described as a pyramid to represent the need to fulfill the lower levels before an individual will move up to the next level. Without fulfillment on the level below, a person cannot progress because they are going to lack the motivation to do that.

Applying Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs in the Workplace

The Five Levels of Needs

When you are applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in the workplace, you have to understand the needs and how they impact motivation. Remember that each need builds on the last, offering a person to feel more fulfilled, which in turn encourages motivation and creative thinking.

Here are five level of needs:

  1. Physiological needs
    Physiological needs are the most basic. We need water, food, clothing, and shelter to survive. In the modern workplace, this will look like basic pay, a designated eating area, clean toilets, and water stations placed in the office.
  2. Security needs
    The second level of needs focuses on our need to feel safe psychologically and physically. In the modern workplace, these needs look like job stability, job security, and physical safety.
  3. Social needs
    We have a deep, intrinsic need to belong. With any social condition, feeling as though you belong, you are supported and valued socially, and that you are comfortable being who you are is critical to mental wellbeing.
  4. Esteem needs
    The fourth level of needs include developing healthy self-esteem, through cultivating self-respect and confidence. We need genuine appreciation and respect from our peers. In the workplace, this is very clear. Feedback is valuable, and congratulating a job well done, will work wonders for motivation.
  5. Self-actualization
    The last and potentially most transformative need is our need for self-actualization.  You have to know that self-actualization or deeper fulfilment, transcends the prior needs. Maslow states that becoming everything one is capable of becoming. This is our need for a terrific purpose in what we do, a sense of reaching and accomplishment within our work.

Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in the Workplace

According to Abraham Maslow’s theory, an employee begins by focusing on the lower order needs of physiology and security. A person who has just begun his/her career will be more concerned with physiological needs such as stable income and security needs. After these basic needs are met, then the employee will focus on social needs.

With these needs met, an employee will want to meet higher-level needs such as self-esteem needs. Those needs are tied to the image of an employee and his desire for the respect and recognition of the other coworkers. Even if the employee does not want to go into management, he/she likely does not want to keep on doing the same task for ten years.

To make work more rewarding, you are able to carry out cross-training, job enrichment, and also special assignments. In addition, you are able to allow the employees to get involved in decision-making. The managers have to give rewards to employees. Of course, rewards need to be balanced to have the best effect.

More information About Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in the Workplace

When you apply Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in your professional life, you may discover areas which could improve. An employer can give ways to fulfill lots of these needs, but you also need to be aware of how your needs will impact your overall success in certain roles. For instance, if you struggle with rejection, a career in sales was able to make it more challenging to meet your needs.

To achieve the top level of this theory in the workplace, you have to be self-actualized, that means you understand your abilities, skills, and what you are capable of handling. A healthy workforce is filled with individuals who have reached the top level of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

The ability to identify your needs and ensure those needs are fulfilled positively can assist you improve your opportunities of success. When you feel safe, supported, your attitude may also influence those around you in the workplace. Engagement and motivation are frequently team-based attitudes, so that a team of individuals who feel their needs are being met will be able to create a more positive, engaging culture within the workplace.

The employers with low engagement rates frequently have higher turnover rates, as well as the problems with low morale and unhappy employees. By investing in the overall happiness of its employees, a business will be able to increase satisfaction while boosting engagement and motivation, which finally impacts productivity.

It is crucial to assess whether you feel your needs are being met in your current position. Your needs are crucial and valuable, so keep them high on your priorities. Also, you are able to look for ways to make changes in your professional life and make a positive, engaging working atmosphere.

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