Contemporary Theories of Motivation-McClelland’s Need Theory of Motivation

Hello Respected Researchers and HR managers, In this section we will discuss about “Contemporary Theories of Motivation-McClelland’s Need Theory of Motivation“. It is very much important for a Researcher as well as HR Concern person/ manager to know the McClelland’s Need Theory of Motivation. If researcher or HR Manager could follow the Points accordingly,it would easier to reach the goal. Let’s have a look…


McClelland’s Need Theory of Motivation:

In the 1940’s David McClelland, a psychologist, created what is known as the TAT – Thematic Apperception Test, to measure human needs. These tests necessitated viewing and interpreting pictures: people were to look at the pictures and then develop stories about their meaning, i.e., what they saw in the picture.

McClelland identified three themes as a result of these TAT tests, and proposed a set of higher-order needs, including:

  1. Need for achievement (nAch) exists when individuals place priority on the quality of their work, and have a preference for situations that enable them to shape the outcome. They tend to set difficult but realistic goals, and are willing to take moderate or calculated risks. People with high nAch will work hard towards a goal primarily because it motivates them.
  2. Need for affiliation (nAff) is a focus on establishing and maintaining relationships with others. Individuals with this need tend not to be competitive, preferring cooperation and conformity.
  3. Need for power (nPower) is often evident among middle and upper-levels of management, because these individuals by definition must influence other members of the organisation. They may make use of their position of power for the good of the organisation, encouraging and facilitating others to become independent and performance-focused.


There may be some more documents on Contemporary Theories of Motivation-McClelland’s Need Theory of Motivation, this article is written by taking the help from Internet and other resources like Books, journals etc.



Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.