The Hertzberg Motivational Theory

As a manager, you’ll want to ensure that your employees are as productive as possible and in order to be productive they must feel motivated. The Hertzberg Motivational Theory, developed by Frederick Hertzberg, is actually a very simple and realistic view of how employees are motivated.

He broke his ideas down into two main categories: hygiene and motivation. Hygiene refers to workplace environment and includes things such as working conditions, salary, job security, rules and regulations, and anything that contributes to the way a person feels about the job itself.

The motivation part of Hertzberg’s theory refers to whether or not employees feel a sense of achievement, whether or not they’re being recognised for their work, and how interested they actually are in their tasks, amongst other things.

The hygiene factors don’t really impact motivation, but if they aren’t in place your employees won’t really be happy with their jobs. The elements contained within the “motivation” part of the theory will drive an employee to move forward.

Both categories, however, work hand in hand. If people feel as though they’re being treated well they’ll be more likely to focus on their progressive goals. They end up motivating themselves and moving forward as opposed to staying stagnant.

The better an employee feels about his job, the better his chances for growth and success. Are your employees both happy and motivated? It’s time to find out…

Thanks again,


Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   

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Updated on: 21 October, 2008

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