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Maslow on Management by Abraham H. Maslow

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The Attitude of Self-Actualizing People to Duty, Work, Mission

This is the simplest way of saying that proper management of the work lives of human beings, of the way in which they earn their living, can improve them and improve the world and in this sense be a utopian or revolutionary technique.

We can learn from self-actualizing people what the ideal attitude toward work might be under the most favorable circumstances. These highly evolved individuals assimilate their work into the identity into the self, i.e., work actually becomes part of the self part of the individual’s definition of himself Work can be psychotherapeutic, psychogogic (making well people grow toward self-actualization). This of course is a circular relationship to some extent, i.e., given fairly o.k. people to begin with, in a fairly good organization, then work tends to improve the people. This tends to improve the industry, which in turn tends to improve the people involved, and so it goes. This is the simplest way of saying that proper management of the work lives of human beings, of the way in which they earn their living, can improve them and improve the world and in this sense be a utopian or revolutionary technique.

I gave up long ago the possibility of improving the world or the whole human species via individual psychotherapy. This is impracticable. As a matter of fact it is impossible quantitatively. ...

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