What Is Meaningful Work?

Gayle (1997) reported that the classic motivation theorists and humanistic psychologists clearly supported the notion of individuals having an inherent need for a work life they believe is meaningful. Maslow (1971) wrote that individuals who do not perceive the workplace as meaningful and purposeful will not work up to their professional capacity. The focus here is on those theories concerned with what Maslow called forces acting “within a person.”
Maslow (1943, 1954, 1970, 1971), Herzberg, Mausner, & Snyderman (1959), McClelland (1965), Alderfer (1972), McGregor (1960), and Rogers (1959, 1961) theorized that individuals are motivated to take certain actions on the basis of fulfilling needs believed to be inherent ...

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