Positive about Maslow

Piers at Monkey Magic made a positive reference to Maslow, being valuable because he’d studied successful / advantaged people, and therefore his psychological outcome was inherently more positive, looking toward progress, rather than wallowing in “failure” or “sick psychology”. Part of my “Criticisms of Maslow” memewatch.

Of course muggins here, didn’t spot that was Piers’ point when I first read it. See the comment thread on Piers’ post.

7 thoughts on “Positive about Maslow”

  1. I have never heard of Maslow, but have heard of the hierarchy of needs, so i had a look at one of the websites which describe his theory. It also gave a brief biography and lo and behold! he knew Eric Fromme, who you may remember wrote a book which was quite inspirational to me and my decision to be a cabinetmaker.

    So, do you or do you not like Maslow’s ideas?

    Also what do you think of behavioral psychology as a tool in managing? The reason I ask is that my sister is working as a consultant for a consulting firm which uses behavioral psychology primarily. One of the CEO’s wrote a book called “IT Happens”

  2. Maslow – I’m very positive about. (His hierarchy of needs incidentally aligns very well with Pirsig’s levels of value / quality, and Heylighen, who organised a conference Pirsig spoke at, also noted this parallel). My ongoing interest in Maslow is that he is forever being criticised, because his case-studies were all professional & intellectually advantaged people, rather than a more representative cross-section of humanity.

    Must check out your Fromme reference. (By a marginal coincidence someone, not you, hit your comment on my earlier post with Google search for Fromme.)

    Behavioural psychology – that’s 90% of management (the arithmetic and technology are the other 5% each). One of my throwaway lines is that reality is 90% “evolutionary psychology” anyway.

    I’d be interested to know the consultancy and CEO you mention. One I’ve noticed that has taken this on board is Cynefin (ex IBM) and CEO Dave Snowden.

  3. Here you go…

    One of the things I noticed is that on all of the websites concerning Maslow, they use virtually the same quotations. copy/paste

    I, too like his ideas, partially because I think I’m in the top section. This was not always so. I remember when I was twenty and feeling quite lost and confused and odd for being so. I guess if you hang in there long enough odd becomes unique.

    So you monitor the hits???

  4. Thanks for the reference links Alice.

    “Using virtually the same quotes” … this is a point about memes, particularly on the web. A small not necessarily significant or even particularly true fact, can get repeatedly communicated to the point of becoming accepted folklore very easily – apochryphal.

    “Google links – how do they do that ?” – The folks at Google are very clever. I’ve blogged several times how amazed I am how completely and quickly every word on every page of my site is indexed and searchable – and I’m sure my site is nothing special to Google. Even after I completely revamped the site last month, with new addresses for every page, within two days, four years of pages and individual posts were fully re-indexed.

    “Monitoring hits ?” – yes I do. Not so much to pry into who, you rarely get enough info unless I recognise particular repeat visitors like yourself, but because of the “cross-hits” I find. From the search strings people use and the sites they come from, I get my best source of new material. (Present company excepted, of course.)

  5. Wow, great links Alice.

    CLG look like an interesting consultancy.

    Fromm (and Maccoby and Margolies) look very interesting. So many names and references in there too. (The Mexican Village sounds right up Northrop and Pirsig’s street.) Several potential additions to my enormous reading list there.

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