•an individual's effort, persistence and the direction of that effort. In simpler terms, motivation is the will to perform
• (Brooks, 2003: 48). In fact, people are motivated whether to achieve a goal or avoid an undesired outcome. A student, for example, will do his best doing a presentation in order to have his teacher's esteem. He can also do well to avoid failure. Many factors are behind somebody's behaviour. There are too types of factors: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic means innate, thus intrinsic motivation is the way to stimulate within oneself, whereas extrinsic motivation is encouragement from an outside environment.
No end of human psychologists has tried to understand motivation and try to find out the factors that are involved in it. Therefore, many theories have been suggested. .
The two core assumptions are: content and process theories.
Content theories: .
Content hypotheses mainly focus on what factors motivate people and, try to expand knowledge about human needs, psychological or social needs, for instance.
One of the first psychologists who started to work in this field was Abraham Maslow. In the 1970s he had an incredible influence on management philosophy. The American psychologist's theory states that people are motivated to satisfy certain needs according to a pecking order. In other words, when psychological needs are satisfied the individual will seek to satisfy the upper level of needs, thus he will try to find security.
Maslow's need-hierarchy theory is about:.
1. Physiological needs: basic needs such as, food, clothes and sex.
2. Safety needs: the need to be protected from dangerous situations or objects.
3. Social needs: the need to be associated with others, to be loved and to have friends.
4. Esteem needs: (a) self-esteem: the need to be confident and need for achievement (b) esteem of others: needs to be recognised, appreciated and to have a status.