Stitching HR Functions with Maslow’s Law in 2020
Today, we will see how HR functions can be stitched together with Maslow’s hierarchy in 2020. Has it evolved or changed over the last 10 years? If you are a HR professional, you must know this, it’s like the basic blocks for your progress.
About Maslow’s Hierarchy?
Published in the 1940’s, it is one of the most widely used theory in People Management. The theory revolves around why humans do what they do & categorizes the different levels of motivational existence. We all know that the Original Pyramid has 5 parts, starting from Physiological needs, Safety, Belonging, Esteem and Self Actualization. Transcendence was added in later years but for the purpose of this video, we’ll stick to the original 5.
As HR professionals, it is essential for us to know which HR function impacts where, in this pyramid. When we know this,
- Better & informed decisions can be taken
- The relevance of our actions
- Move from Transactional HR to Transformational HR
#1 Physiological needs:
These are the most fundamental & foundational HR functions. They include
- Compensation & Benefits Management
- HR Record Keeping
- Working Conditions or what we call as Physical work environment
Again, one among the basic aspects of the pyramid. It should include :
- Workplace Safety
- Employee Facing Policies & Relations
- Retiral benefits
Now we move from Basic to psychological aspects. In this category of Belonging, the HR functions we need to talk about are
- Employee Engagement
- Peer to peer engagement
- Mission & Vision Buy-In
- Leadership Culture
All of these impact the belonging aspects. Just think about it – Why do we engage with our people? Why do companies share their Mission and Vision and as employees go up the ladder, there is constant evaluation if they connected to the Mission and Vision of the company. Leadership culture is also an influencing factor because leaders connect & leaders make an impact, hence HR’s have to have a system to promote the right Leadership culture.
The next in this category is Esteem. The noteworthy functions that have an influence here are
- Job Rotation
- Talent Development
- Individual & Org. Growth
- Rewards & Recognitions
Job Rotation provides new opportunities to learn and prove cross-functional abilities & removes boredom. Talent development uplifts employees with new skills, competencies & helps companies to remain competitive. When an Individual grows – in terms of responsibilities, designation, cadre among many other things, there is an impact here too. Equally important is R&R – Best employee of the month, Best achiever, best learner, spot awards, etc – All of these functions together influence ESTEEM.
#5 Self Actualization:
The topmost of this Pyramid, namely Self Actualization is influenced by
- Competing Talents
- Workplace Diversity
- Opportunity to Innovate / Be creative
- Organizational Image & Self Image
When you hire talent who are smart, knowledgeable, or intelligent; there is a need for the rest of the team or peers to step up from their current places. Workplace diversity provides exposure to dimensions other than regular job & regular duties. It also brings in critical thinking & empathy to people. Fuelling Self Image alongside the organization’s brand is a great self-actualization activity. To be an influencer, thought leader, speaker, advisor or coach, is a great starting point in this area.
Now let’s look at what has changed or what will change?
- The functions that sit on the physiological and safety needs, irrespective of the size of the organization, will move to a fully outsourced model or what we call as a fully managed model. Better Tech as well as employee experience will be key factors to judge.
- The 2K Kids, as we call them, a lot of them will give importance to Belonging, Esteem & Self actualization early on in their career itself.
- This mindset change will make employers who care more on these aspects retain talent better than the inflexible ones
- The 3rd point in my assessment is that HR professionals who do not understand the dynamics of Belonging, Esteem, and actualization will become redundant. It means that we as HR professionals need constant upskilling not once a decade but probably once every 2 to 3 years.
With this being said my friends, what are your thoughts? What other changes do you see? Could be specific to your organization or general industry thoughts? I would love to know! Post your comments below and let’s help live in a better world. If you found this interesting or useful, do share with your HR friends too.
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