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8.4. Basic Drivers


How To Invent (Almost) Anything > 8. The Motivating Fire > 8.4. Basic Drivers

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As humans and animals, then, we have a deep and abiding need to survive and procreate. But we know there is more to our lives than that. Psychologist Abraham Maslow described his now-famous ‘Hierarchy of Needs’ in 1943, where he showed how we have prioritised layers of needs. Once we are reasonably healthy and safe, we start to pay more attention to what other people think about us, but if we fall sick, then all thought of achievements at work are forgotten; all we want is to get well again.

If we look again at Maslow's hierarchy, we can see two more fundamental drivers that underlie his five categories. As Fig. 8.1 shows, the lower-level needs are connected with our need for a sense of control and the higher needs are increasingly about our sense of identity.

Fig. 8.1 Maslow's hierarchy

To make evolutionary sense, these needs should lead to the evolutionary goal of survival of the species. This is shown in Fig. 8.2, where a linked set of needs shows how achieving needs as described by Maslow and others leads to this ultimate goal.

Fig. 8.2 Causal linkages of deep drivers


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