There are several models in the academia which attempt to describe the human need and its evolution. The most commonly knowns being the Maslow’s needs of hierarchy and its more evolved counter part being the Barret model of motivation. While there are differences in how these models perceive human needs, but in principle they all indicate the very first need of human is that of existence i.e. survival viability and as we move up the ladders the needs evolve to that of being connects, recognized, self-esteem, perform and if this continue to evolve, the human beings can evolve to a level where the needs to gain from the world changes to the needs to serve the world.
When someone reaches this top level of human needs evolution (self-actualisation), they are driven intrinsically to serve and are not motivated by material gains, respect, recognition, and power, which become secondary. From its very definition, it’s evident that people who reach that higher level of motivation and drive (self-actualization) will be more selfless, more driven and a huge asset to the organization they work for.
This brings us to the moot point of our topic; can organizations do something to move more and more of their employees up the ladder of motivation to self-actualization. The answer to this is Yes. It’s a known and established fact that human behaviour is largely driven by the environment we are in and hence the culture of the organization becomes an important factor that will either drive the people to higher levels of motivation towards self-actualization or will push them down to existential needs leading them to a highly competitive behaviour, which often emerges our of toxic cultures and then it further contributes to the toxicity of the culture to create a downward spiral trend of culture depletion.
Knowing this, organizations must work on consciously creating the cultures which facilitate the movement of its employees towards high motivation levels. The process of creating culture requires a deep study and articulation of culture and then working on the levers to shape it accordingly. On a high level the steps to do so are
- Articulating the desired culture using a set process to do so.
- Assessing the current culture of the organization on various parameters and its deviation from the desired culture. Kognitivus’ proprietary 5D culture model powered by its ECG framework is a comprehensive mechanism to help articulate and assess the culture of the organization.
- Identifying the areas of solution and change, to be able to drive the culture to its desired state.
- Executing the change management process which will also involve a educating employees on certain power skills (earlier knowns as soft skills).
- Institutionalizing the Governance mechanism to ensure that the change is adopted and integrated in the organization.
While a lot of organization invest significantly on employee engagement and some work only to get a certification which state that they are best employers; the need is to create a mechanism that is sustainable and automated to drive not just employee engagement but also creating more evolved employees who are involved in the success of the organization. And that is done by working on the culture of the organization.