Short Notes on the Herzberg’s Theory of Motivation



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1. Hygiene Factors:

Hygiene factors represent the need to avoid pain in the environment. They are not an intrinsic part of a job, but they are related to the • conditions under which a job is performed.

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They are associated with negative feelings. They must be viewed as preventive measures that remove sources of dissatisfaction from the environment.

Herzberg believed that hygiene factors create a zero level of motivation and if maintained at proper level, prevent nega­tive type of motivation from occurring.

Thus, hygiene factors, when absent, increase dissatisfaction with the job. When present, they help in preventing dissatisfaction but do not increase satis­faction or motivation.

2. Motivators:

Motivators are associated with positive feelings of employees about the job. They make people satisfied with their jobs.

Motivators are necessary to keep job satisfaction and job performance high. Motivational fac­tors or satisfiers are directly related to job content itself, the individual’s per­formance of it, its responsibilities and the growth and recognition obtained from it. Motivators are intrinsic to the job.

Thus, when motivators are absent, it prevents both satisfaction and motivation. When, motivators are present, they lead to satisfaction and motivation.

To apply the two-factor theory to the workplace, Herzberg suggests a two-step process.

(a) The supervisor should attempt to eliminate the hygiene factors that are found to be more basic than factors that lead to satisfaction.

(b) Once the dissatisfies have been somewhat neutralised, the supervisor may be able to motivate workers through the introduction of motivational factors.

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