Alderfer’s ERG Theory
An extension of the Herzberg theory and Maslow’s need hierarchy theory comes from the work of Clayton Alderfer. He formulated a need category model that was more in line with the existing empirical evidence. Like Maslow and Herzberg, he does feel that there is value in categorizing needs and that there is a basic distinction between lower order needs and higher order needs. Alderfer identified three groups of core needs:
1. Existence Needs
Existence needs include all needs related to physiological and safety aspects of an individual. Thus, existence needs group physiological and safety needs of Maslow into one category as these have similar impact on the behavior of the individual.
2. Relatedness Needs
Relatedness needs include all those needs that involve relationship With other people whom the individual cares. Relatedness needs cover Maslow’s social needs and that part of esteem l needs which is derived from the relationship with other people.
3. Growth Needs
Growth needs involve the individual making creative efforts to achieve full potential in the existing environment. These include Maslow’s self actualization need as well as that part of the esteem need which is internal to the individual like feeling of being unique, feeling of personal growth etc.
1. By and large, lower order needs must be satisfied to move on to higher order needs(satisfaction-progression process).
2. In case of the frustration of higher order needs the person can go back to lower order needs(frustration-regression process).
3. The greater the satisfaction of higher order needs the more satisfying they become.
4. All the needs can operate simultaneously.
5. All these needs can be influenced by educational, social and cultural determinants.
1. ERG theory takes the strong points of the earlier content theories but it is less restrictive and limiting as compared to the others.
2. The ERG theory is more consistent with our knowledge of individual differences among people. Variables such as education, family background, and cultural environment can alter the importance or driving force that a group of needs hold for a particular individual .
1. The ERG theory failed to propose straightforward guiding principle. The model suggests that individuals will be driven to involve in a behavior which will gratify one of the three sets of needs assumed by the model.
Two Factor Theory