As an individual involved in business training I knew that motivation in business has long been misunderstood. When I started my online business, I had certain goals in mind. I wanted to make money working from home. I have two rescue dogs who do not like to be left! I obviously wanted to provide for my family and pay the bills and mortgage! More than this, I wanted to be in a position to help others, not only to start their own successful online business, but also to help others in developing countries.
This article will explore motivation in general as well as how we as individuals are motivated to start up an online business, why we do it and what we want to get out of it. There are some basic things that motivate us all and Maslow's hierarchy of needs expresses this at a number of levels. I have provided an interpretation of these needs in the diagram below.
Interpretation by Diana Worley from Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
It is interesting that none of the boxes deal with the need for money or material goods, I will return to this later in this article. They deal with basic biological and physiological needs in order to stay alive; they deal with a need to have rules and a code to live by, some of which are included in religious doctrine. The third box deals with our emotional needs and a requirement for a sense of belonging to either a family, or in the business sense, a team working towards common goals. We need to feel appreciated and loved for our wellbeing. This is supported by the statistics that those in a long term loving relationship tend to have better health and live longer.
The fourth box deals with our need to be recognized for our accomplishments and that most people like to have responsibility which in turn helps to build our status and reputation. The top box is about how we develop as human beings. Our experiences will determine how we develop, but to an extent this relates to us exploring our motivations and developing ourselves to reach a point when we feel fulfilled. It has been shown that if we do not develop and achieve fulfilment we may feel dissatisfied, but do not really know why – just a background feeling that there is something missing. Many fill this gap with religious beliefs, some pursue excellence in sport or entertainment, or to amass a great fortune and business success. Others spend their whole lives searching for that elusive something, even if they appear to be hugely successful at what they do.
I mentioned earlier about money and material possessions not being present on this pyramid. Why is this? Perhaps we have to look at money in a different way. In present times, we are much wealthier than we were in say the depression of the 1930s, but the levels of happiness have not increased with this. If we see poor people in the third world, often they appear to have a greater degree of happiness that we in the developed world have.
If we regard money in itself as a goal, this does not appear to work. I believe that we should regard money as a tool, whilst it enables us to buy homes and possessions, it should also be regarded as a tool to help others. I found that once I started to think about how I could help others, my business took off.
If you would like to find out more, please visit my blog http://diworley.com