Maslow Herzberg comparison

Similarities and Dissimilarities Between Maslow and Herzberg Theories

Maslow and Herzberg Theory of Motivation

Comparison between Maslow and Herzberg’s theories consists of similarities and differences between need hierarchy theory and two-factor theory. Many researchers have made notable research done in motivation. Among them, needs-based theories developed by Abraham Maslow and Frederick Herzberg are the most significant.

Maslow presented his idea in his paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” in 1943. Herzberg has done research on 200 engineers and accountants in 1959. Maslow identified five human needs and Herzberg’s two human motives.

Similarities Between Maslow’s and Herzberg’s Motivation Theories

  • Both Maslow and Herzberg emphasized the importance of the need for employee motivation.
  • Both need hierarchy theory and two-factor theory made great contributions in schools, businesses, and organizations, and in researches.
  • Both theories help to understand the psychology of employees and act accordingly so that employee motivation increses.
  • Maslow’s physiological, safety, and social needs are similar to Herzberg hygiene or maintenance factors. The esteem and self-actualization needs of Maslow’s theory are similar to Herzberg’s motivating factors.

Therefore, Herzberg’s two-factor theory is a modified version of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

You can better understand by seeing the following picture:

Maslow and Herzberg theory comparison

Dissimilarities/Differences Between Maslow’s and Herzberg’s Theory of Motivation

  • Maslow classified human needs into five categories where Herzberg classified human motives into Two-Factors. Therefore, Maslow’s theory is expressive and Herzberg’s theory is perspective.
  • Maslow formulated the theory in terms of needs and Herzberg’s in terms of goals or rewards.
  • Maslow did not focus on the job content aspect whereas Herzberg emphasized the job enrichment aspects.
  • Maslow has explained motivation in terms of hierarchy and according to him, an unsatisfied need is a motivating factor. But Herzberg has divided various factors into two categories consisting of hygiene and motivating factors.
  • Maslow’s theory is applicable to all levels of employees whereas Herzberg’s theory is more applicable to professional employees.

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