Motivation is Linked to Biology Just as Much as Psychology

Motivation is often viewed as being purely psychological. It’s the motivation of the mind to drive us to succeed, or provide us with a will to survive. Motivation as a whole can be broken down into different sections. First you have the psychological motivation. These are perhaps the ones that most people relate to:

  • Motivation of hunger – A need to digest food for nutritional value.
  • Motivation of thirst – A need to drink and take in life necessary fluids.
  • Motivation of oxygen – The need to breathe and to bring oxygen into the blood.
  • Motivation of sleep – Essential for rejuvenation of energy and to promote healing. 

Next, there are social motivations we have. These are unique traits to humans and impact the effort we place into the things we accomplish in life, such as:

  • Motivation of achievement – To desire to reach a goal we have.
  • Motivation of aggression – Usually attached to another person preventing us from reaching a goal.
  • Motivation of power – The motivation to use influence and reputation to achieve a goal.
  • Motivation of acquisition – The motivation to receive something in exchange for our time. In business, this is the motivation to be paid to do a job. 
  • Motivation of curiosity – The motivation to learn, one commonly found in the school setting.

What we find is that biological needs impact the motivation we have in the workplace. We have a biological need to eat and drink, so we are driven to maintain employment that allows us to do both. There is a physical need for a roof over our heads and our psychological need to care for our families all play an important role in the process.


When recruiting for our clients we need to take into account the motivations of any potential permanent recruitment candidates we look at. What are their motivations to work and what would drive them to remain loyal to your business? Every new hire you look at needs to be explored on several levels. That way you avoid investing your time and resources into a new hire that ultimately will cost you more than they bring back into their position.


If you are interested in recruiting highly self-motivated staff, please click here.

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