To address shortcomings of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory, Clayton Alderfer proposed ERG theory of motivation. ERG theory is based on the concepts of existence needs, related needs and growth needs used in the model. ERG means Existence, Relatedness and Growth.
The ERG theory has identified the needs into following three categories:
According to ERG theory, all the three needs may operate simultaneously. The theory propounded a new dimension known as ‘frustration regression’. Accordingly, a person tries to satisfy a lower order need, if he is frustrated with satisfaction of a higher order need. Therefore, unsatisfied higher order need brings back to lower order need. Thus, the concept of need satisfaction arising out of frustration is the basic concept of ERG theory.
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