Home > Free Essays > Psychology > Behavior Management > Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness
Cite this

Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness Essay


The importance of human resource management in the modern business world could hardly be doubted. For this reason, this paper delves into the different various motivation theories with the primary aim of investigating their efficiency and the outcomes that could be stipulated reached by the application of one of these approaches. The paper uses an article that presents John Lark’s case as the background for the discussion and evaluation of the particular motivation theories, the impacts they have on workers, and how they might be used in different settings. Moreover, the suggested document applies Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory and McClelland’s three-needs theory to the given case with the central aim of explaining why all the measures introduced by John Lark turned out to be efficient. The in-depth discussion of these theories and their comparison is also suggested. At the same time, the paper reveals mentions two specific cases when in which the selected methods might fail to work and explains the basic causes of these undesired outcomes. The article ends with a discussion of the basic aspects of current approaches to human resource management and tools that are used to motivate employees to demonstrate their best performance. In the end, the conclusion is given.


Today, we could we can observe a tendency towards the sophistication of society’s societal and as well as individuals value systems. These processes are inevitable considering the complexity of the majority of many issues that are topical for a common person might experience nowadays. To become successful, an individual has to combine his/her personal and professional development with financial stability and success. For this reason, employees working in different organizations demonstrate the increased level of demands in the working environment, the atmosphere within a collective, perspectives potential for further growth, etc. Regarding the apparent raise increase in the level of rivalry in the business world, directors, top managers, or companies’ owners have to must satisfy these demands to guarantee them a high level of performance and the preservation of a significant competitive advantage necessary to remain successful. However, in the majority of cases, the introduction of high salaries and comfortable working conditions is not enough to achieve the needed goal and ensure that all workers will do their best. Under these conditions, numerous motivation theories acquire the become top priority. Nowadays, they are currently being used as a potent tool to consider all significant employees’ needs and provide them with the stimuli and motivation that will trigger their personal and professional growth.

Summary of John Lark’s case

The practical use of the theories mentioned above could be proven using multiple real-life situations like John Lark’s case. It perfectly demonstrates how the use of appropriate motivation measures could help to attain the needed result and enhance workers’ performance. John Lark introduced a particular reward program focused on the provision of rewards bonuses for managers who suggested efficient solutions implemented by the company. In such this way, trying to encourage these employees, he introduced the position of “a colleague of the month.” This worker was provided with a special and comfortable parking space and a handshake in front of the whole company. However, these measures turned out to be not so as efficient as it was expected. Moreover, Also, an employee of the company informed John that this practice was shameful and embarrassing. For this reason, the original method was replaced by the new approach. By altered conditions, every employee whose suggestion was implemented was provided with 10% of the estimated savings that were acquired due to the adherence to the model suggested by this very worker. Moreover, specific prizes for these individuals were provided every month. This e given practice demonstrated its efficiency and resulted in significant savings. The bigger part of the majority of workers started making their suggestions on how to improve the functioning of the company. In such a way, John managed to achieve his goal and attain improved work to improve the success of the company.

Applications of Motivation Theories to Article on John Lark’s Case

The given this case could be analyzed regarding various particular motivation theories. For instance, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory could be applied (see Figure 1 in Appendix). This very concept deals with a particular hierarchy ranking of needs that includes such aspects as psychological comfort, safety, belonging and love, esteem, and self-actualization (Maslow, 2013) These elements become crucial for any person as they determine his/her their motivation and readiness to act in different situations. For instance, a person will always try to improve his/her position to feel safer, beloved, and guarantee constant personal growth. In such this way, the satisfaction of these basic demands needs will increase the desire to move forward and improve performance. At the same time, one should remember, that according to this theory of motivation, the lower needs, or the needs placed at the bottom of the triangle, should be met first to improve a person’s current state and eliminate factors that might prevent him/her them from focusing on higher-level needs that include self-development and growth (McLeod, 2017).

Using Maslow’s perspective to analyze the efficiency of John’s approach suggested by John, we could see that his first attempts were was useless because of their inability to motivate workers by affecting basic needs. The first rewarding pattern method and supposed that employees should be provided with some symbolic prizes like a better parking space or handshaking. However, this pattern method considers the high need for money which serves as tangible rewards such as money are one of the leading motihandshakingtors in workers. Therefore, the success of the second attempt could be effervesced that the fact that moral rewards were supported by a significant sum of money that an individual could spend on his/her own needs. As Maslow states, the lower needs should be met first; for this reason, by satisfying workers’ needs desires for financial stability, her any also created the basis for the development fulfillment of their needs for growth and professional development (Waiz, 2017). Employees started to feel secured and realized the need for their self-actualization. In other words, Maslow’s approach perfectly explains the overall success of the suggested measure.

The second theory that could be applied regarding the case is McClelland’s three-needs theory, which that also tries to describe the central factors that precondition particular choices and affect people in their everyday life and precondition particular choices. In general, it states that the three basic needs (for achievement, power, and affiliation) impact the actions of people regarding their performance and current managerial context (see Figure 2 in Appendix) (“McClelland’s human motivation theory,” n.d.). These motivational drivers could be applied to all people regardless of their gender, culture, position, race, etc. (“McClelland’s human motivation theory,” n.d.). In other words, a person’s need for the accomplishment of a goal and success associated with it might be considered a central force that predetermines his/her future actions. The other two domains (the need for power and affiliation) also remain important as the desire to be loved, respected, and possess control over significant processes is an integral part of human nature. The given theory remains topical in explaining diverse actions performed by employees or managers who work in the business world.

Nevertheless, McClelland’s three-needs theory could also be used to explain the success attained by John Lark in his company. The fact is, that introduction of any rewarding practice also means the creation of a competitive environment in which the most successful workers will be provided awarded with particular benefits or advantageous positions. Regarding the need for affiliation and belonging to the collective, workers would prefer to act in ways that will differentiate them from others only in case the reward will satisfy their desires for achievements and power (Petri & Govern, 2012). In such a way because of this, the first suggestion was not good enough sufficient to make individuals act. The offered prize offered was too symbolic, and it was not able to affect the outlined domains. However, the introduction of a new pattern that introduced a significant sum of money for an efficient suggestion altered the situation and provided workers with the appropriate motivation. The fact is that money could help to meet both the need for achievement and power. That is why the success described in the case could be explained using McClelland’s three-needs theory.

Applications of Selected Theories to Real-Life Examples

At the same time, the selected theories could only be efficient only if they are applied appropriately, and their use is preconditioned by the groundwork aimed at the investigation of the current employees’ needs and factors that might motivate them. Otherwise, positive outcomes could hardly not be achieved. This assumption could be proven through several examples. For instance, a fast-growing company working in the sphere of specific software introduced to guarantee the security of electronic transactions and e-banking faces a high level of rivalry peculiar to the current sphere of digital technologies nowadays. Trying to both acquire a competitive advantage and preserve its leading positions, the company introduces rewarding practices. These include a particular sum of money for any employee who will create efficient software that enhances the existing security system and or eliminates loopholes to guarantee the security of all transactions. However, the given current method fails to improve performance.

Moreover, no employee tried to participate in the competition and by offering their r his/her application. At the first gaze glance, this e given intervention was organized regarding according to the basic aspects of Maslow’s theory as affected lower physiological about the needs for money and power they that it could guarantee. However, several factors preconditioned caused a poor outcome. First, the suggested reward was too small to interest employees whose average salary is high if in comparison with the medium median income in the state. Second, the creation of the above-mentioned software will be a significant success for an employee who will be able to develop or sell it to earn millions (Petri & Govern, 2012). For this reason, the applied motivation approach was not efficient effective. It did not consider the existing level of income of the company’s workers. The offering also did not contribute to the creation of a beneficial or competitive environment where all workers would try to do their best to be rewarded by officials. Finally, the suggested terms of the competition were inappropriate as they limited workers in their development. For this reason, this attempt failed.

There is another example that demonstrates that the implementation of the above previously mentioned theories does not always means lead to successful outcomes. Nevertheless, aIn this case, a particular company that focused on an investigation of the current state of the market and creation of specific forecasts about its development experienced a reduction in incomes and significant deterioration of workers’ performance. It was associated with the poor functioning of department managers, and they were fired. At the same time, the idea of stimulating employees’ performance appeared. In such a way accordingly, the company’s officials proposed a specific rewarding model that presupposed promised prizes for the most efficient workers. MoreoverAdditionally, evaluating the monthly results of the month, the most creative work would be suggested with the position of the department manager which was still vacant. Being certain re that the given approach will motivate workers to work harder, top managers expected improved results; however, there was no significant increase in performance. Moreover, the majority of outstanding current workers refused to become department managers. There are several reasons for such outcomes.

First, using McClelland’s three-needs theory and trying to satisfy the need for power and appraisal, the official’s managers tried to introduce a powerful workplace with perspectives for further growth. However, this position did not provide workers with safety warranties guarantees. Because the previous specialists who occupiedoccupants of these posts were fired because of the poor results, employees did not want to risk unemployment by and accepting these responsibilities. Moreover, the collective of the company is characterized by close relations between its members and informal communicational patterns that are explored by employees. Additionally, there is no strong hierarchy because of the relaxed atmosphere and the character of relations between workers. In such a way because of this, anyone who was appointed to become a department manager would have had limited opportunities to impact the collective and make them function in a particular way contribute and participate in the social culture of the company. Additionally, the difference in salaries is sowas not significant enough to interest employees and make them struggle. For these reasons, all individuals refused to participate in this competition and preferred to preserve continue in their current positions that were characterized by stability, financial independence, and absence of complex responsibilities. In such a way because of this, the company’s management was not able to create an appropriate reward and by satisfying people’s basic needs for power, appraisal, and financial stability (Ryan & Deci, 2017). On the contrary, they introduced an environment that depressed the desire to improve performance and acquire additional responsibilities.


Altogether, the given this paper demonstrates the enhanced importance of multiple motivation theories that are currently used by managers and owners gets and officials nowadays. John Lark’s case evidence shows the necessity of considering the existing peculiarities situations of all workers and introducing rewarding practices that will be able to satisfy their basic requirements. Moreover, using Maslow’s motivation hierarchy or McClelland’s three-needs theories we could determine help to determine the most important domains areas that should be affected to guarantee improved final results. These are physiological needs, such as the need for power, money, appraisal, etc. By introducing prizes that will be able to meet these requirements, companies will stimulate motivation and excitement for the appearance of the need for new achievements and self-realization. However, some cases show poor outcomes if managers introduce wrong incorrect, or inefficient motivation patterns. The scenarios suggested above show that the in-depth investigation of the basic peculiarities situations of workers, their demands, and the atmosphere within a collective group is fundamental during the implementation of motivation theories and attempts to enhance workers’ overall performance and results.


Maslow, A. (2013). A theory of human motivation. Westford, MA: Martino Fine Books.

(n.d.). Web.

McLeod, S. (2017). Web.

Petri, H., & Govern, J. (2012). Motivation: Theory, research, and application. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Publishing.

Ryan, R., & Deci, E. (2017). Self-determination theory: Basic psychological needs in motivation, development, and wellness. New York, NY: The Guilford Press.

Waiz, S. (2017). Web.


 Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
Figure 1. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (McLeod, 2017).
Needs theory.
Figure 2. Needs theory (“McClelland’s human motivation theory,” n.d.).
This essay on Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness was written and submitted by your fellow student. You are free to use it for research and reference purposes in order to write your own paper; however, you must cite it accordingly.
Removal Request
If you are the copyright owner of this paper and no longer wish to have your work published on IvyPanda.
Request the removal

Need a custom Essay sample written from scratch by
professional specifically for you?

Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar
Writer online avatar

certified writers online

Cite This paper

Select a referencing style:


IvyPanda. (2020, December 22). Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-theories-and-study-of-their-effectiveness/

Work Cited

"Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness." IvyPanda, 22 Dec. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-theories-and-study-of-their-effectiveness/.

1. IvyPanda. "Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness." December 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-theories-and-study-of-their-effectiveness/.


IvyPanda. "Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness." December 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-theories-and-study-of-their-effectiveness/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness." December 22, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-theories-and-study-of-their-effectiveness/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'Motivation Theories and Study of Their Effectiveness'. 22 December.

More related papers
Pss... Stuck with your
assignment? 😱
Pss... Stuck with your assignment? 😱
Do you need an essay to be done?
What type of assignment 📝 do you need?
How many pages (words) do you need?
What’s your deadline? ⏰ Let's see if we can help you!