How We Relate Maslow’s Theory To Induction

Nancy B. Alston

Even though newcomers will have anxiety, they will also be feeling enthusiastic and motivated to do a good job. The main goal of induction is to maintain this enthusiasm and motivation for as long as possible. This will result in more effective performance.

You maintain motivation by providing your newcomer with:

* The right type of support and guidance

* At the right time

* In the right way

Maslow’s Theory

A newcomer’s journey from being nervous and insecure to becoming a confident member of staff who can contribute to the goals of the company, can be compared to steps in Maslow’s Theory of Motivation.

Everyone has needs and Maslow believed that these needs could be arranged in a hierarchy starting off with basic physiological needs and ending with more intellectually demanding needs.

Until a need is satisfied, a person cannot (or is not motivated to) move on to the next level. It is the same with induction: before newcomers can begin to understand the more complicated aspects of their jobs and company, and before they can be fully effective, they need to be comfortable with some basic knowledge.

Maslow’s Hierarchy Of Needs

To understand the link with induction let’s look at the needs:

* Physiological – basic biological needs, essential for survival, such as food, shelter and sleep

* Safety – includes protection from physical and psychological threats

* Social – the need for love, acceptance, friendship and social interaction

* Ego – includes a need for self-respect, confidence, power and competence

* Self-actualisation – self-fulfilment, achievement, realisation of potential

The Link Between Needs & Induction

Physiological: During the first few days newcomers require very basic and simple information in order to feel secure, like: knowing where they will be working, finding out where things are and learning the names of people.

Safety: Over the next few weeks they establish a routine and are given assignments with clear guidance. Also they need to become familiar with company details such as its structure, aims and different departments.

Social They then start forming relationships with people, having coffee or lunch with some. They begin to get used to the procedures and, therefore, slowly fit in.

Ego As they understand their roles better and attend training they begin to gain in self-respect and become more effective.

Self-actualisation: After 6-12 months, with the right environment, newcomers begin to fulfil their potential within their roles.

Copyright © 2006 Jonathan Farrington. All rights reserved

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