Frederick Herzberg: Exploring What Motivates Us
Any good manager knows that happy, satisfied workers will
generally perform better than those who don't feel as satisfied.
However, managers have always had differing opinions about what
it takes to satisfy workers.
During the 50's and 60's, a man named Fredrick Herzberg decided
to carefully study and research the key factors affecting a
worker's performance. During his research, he found that certain
factors tended to cause a worker to feel unsatisfied with his or
her job. These factors seemed to directly relate to the
employee's environment such as the physical surroundings,
supervisors and even the company itself. He developed a theory
based on this observation, naming it the "Hygiene Theory."
According to his theory, for a worker to be happy and therefore
productive, these environmental factors must not cause
discomfort. Although the elimination of the environmental
problems may make a worker productive, it will not necessarily
motivate him. The question remains, "How can managers
motivate employees?" Many managers believe that
motivating employees requires giving rewards. Herzberg, however,
believed that the workers get motivated through feeling
responsible for and connected to their work. In this case, the
work itself is rewarding. Managers can help the employees connect
to their work by giving them more authority over the job, as
well as offering direct and individual feedback.
Fredrick Herzberg. Hygiene Motivation Theory