Uploaded by minatalic

MGMT project (1)

By: Jasmina Talic, Jared Gereke, Allison Bell, Brendan Davies
Motivation is defined as “the set of forces, internal and external that
initiate work-related behaviour and determine its form, direction,
intensity, and duration.”
McClelland’s theory of learned needs is composed of 3 high order needs
that are, The Need for Achievement, Need for Power, and Need for
Affiliation , all have different implications on an individual’s behaviour
and actions, and the need which dominates in any one individual, will be
the motivating factor behind all their decisions.
Based on the movie “The Insider”, we will look at how these needs affect
an individual’s processing of mental ideas, affecting the performance of
an individual in all day-to-day situations. We will also look at how these
needs contribute to the decisive factors in making the final decisions that
affect them, their careers, and their individual situations.
We have looked at how each need contributes in a different way to how a
person responds and reacts to the environment around them in order to
fulfill their personal initiatives for individual success.
The three needs explored are learned characteristics that people posses, and vary in
intensities depending on the experiences that an individual goes through in their life.
It is important to understand what needs motivate different people so that there is a
greater efficiency of resources and less employee turnover.
Being able to distinguish between a person’s need for power - a concern for influencing
people, or achievements- a concern for challenging goals and overcoming difficulties, or
affiliation- a concern for intimate relationships, will make it easier to delegate tasks, set
reasonable and accomplishable goals, reward performance and overall, motivate
workers more efficiently.
Depending on the industry and the competition, different organizations will have very
different goals and mission statements that attract a diverse group of potential
Understanding that one need may be more important than the other in a particular
industry is very important to create a competitive advantage and ultimately, a profit.
It is for these reasons that an organization should not undermine the importance of
motivation and the 3 needs that stem from it. Understanding their importance and role
in an organization will create a more productive and profitable organization.
Definition- the need for achievement – the drive to excel and improve standards and
past performance; the need for power – the desire to influence and control others;
and the need for affiliation – the desire to be accepted and liked by others
(Dictionary of Human Resource Management, p. 232).
The theory suggests that these secondary human needs are not hierarchical, are
learned and vary based on an individual’s personality (Sniderman, Bulmash,
Nelson, & Quick, 2007). This paper looks at the needs theory, and aims to further
understand the characteristics of each need and how it affects the motivation of
“Those high in need for affiliation appear to be predisposed to be sympathetic and
accommodating towards others (Schmidt and Freize, 1997). Sniderman, Bulmash,
Nelson and Quick (2007). The need for achievement is the “desire to do something
better or more effectively than it has been done before” (McClelland and Burnham,
High power is also seen as associated with stress, and high levels of
power motivation can bring the risk of derailment, when power is
exercised aggressively or in pursuit of exclusive self-interest (Blackwell
Encyclopedic Dictionary of Organizational Behaviour, 2005).
According to McClelland and Burnham (1976), the need to achieve leads
people to behave in ways that do not necessarily produce good
management (personal improvement and doing things themselves.)
The successful manager should influence others’ success more than
achieve new goals him or herself or socialize with subordinates
(McClelland and Burnham, 1976).
A good manager is one who, helps employees feel strong and responsible,
and rewards them properly for good performance. Sniderman, Bulmash,
Nelson and Quick (2007) state that according to McClelland, a high need
for power is a distinguishing characteristic of managers that were rated
the ‘best’.
YouTube - The Insider (1999) - Trailer
“Don’t talk” scene is a meeting that takes place with Mr. Wigand and the
CEO of Brown and Williamson. They discussed the issues of the
confidentiality portion of the severance agreement. The company set the
tone for the future and prove that they are serious about protecting their
company’s interests and have delivered Mr. Wigand with a new expanded
confidentiality agreement. In this case the need for power is a strong
component. It made a difference in Mr. Wigand’s life because if he doesn’t
sign he won’t get any more benefits or payoff and it will affect the quality
of his life, since he isn’t employed any longer. The need for affiliation is
lacking because he doesn’t have a good relationship with the CEO of the
company and others. In this case, they are hostile to each other and he is
threatened by what they say. The need for achievement is overcoming
these difficulties. How will he get by and what will he need to do to arrive
at that sate? In this scene, we can see his motivation level is nearly at rock
bottom. It hit him pretty hard when he lost his job, but now he can lose
even more.
YouTube - The Insider - Pacino Speech
In this case, Mr. Wigand wasn’t motivated by any of these
needs. He lost everything and he had nothing to show for his
loss. He was emotionally hurt and frustrated and the need for
affiliation between him and the 60 Minutes crew exploded into
pieces. There were no more close relationships with anyone.
To him it felt that the whole world turned their backs on him.
Again the need for achievement has failed because he didn’t
overcome anything, and his goals failed. While observing the
scene, we come to conclude that the motivation level had gone
way down, and he wasn’t motivated by anything. There was
no motivation for any need because he felt that he gave it his
all and it just blew up in his face.
This scene is where the show gets aired. We felt that the needs
here were all met. The need for affiliation- his interview reached
a lot of people, and he gained that warm, close relationship from
most people. In this case the need for power had been the
strongest one. With his story, he changed the outcome. He
influenced others, and made a difference in many lives. Now
everyone knew the secret behind the biggest tobacco company
scandal in years. The need for achievement was also very strong,
because he accomplished his goals and strived for excellence. He
overcame everything that got in his way and achieved what he
wanted to from the beginning.
Mr. Wigand was more motivated by the need for power and
achievement rather than the need for affiliation. To him it was
more important to influence others, and make a difference, and
overcome the barriers rather than maintain close relationships.
Each need has a different way of affecting the
motivation of an individual and is followed by
specific consequences which affect a person’s
decision making process. We have come to
understand that a very strong need for power,
achievement, or affiliation, can in fact blur an
individual’s conscience and vision as they strive
continuously to fulfill their ideal, and
predetermined goals.
We have realized that having such a dedicated need, such as the need for power,
becomes a much directed motivational strength. Believing in something with a passion,
and having the desire to pursue it, along with the continued motion of being an
advocate for it, really shows an individual representation of a perceived vision.
We have well-read that this theory and the needs inclusive of it are great elements for
the motivation of a manager, and a strong member of society. However we also learned
that they can be destructive once a certain level is reached. The motivational factors that
are caused by having such a strong set of needs can be consequential, however the
achievement, along with the emotional and personal gratification that an individual can
realize by harnessing the power of these needs, is much greater.