‘Everybody Herzberg’

‘Everybody Herzberg’
November 20, 2012 Bob Pearce

By TTT contributor and subscriber Bob Pearce.

How are my team really doing?

Am I seeing the ‘green shoots’ of something good?

Should I continue to focus on the positives I can see?

Or should I be questioning the manager’s judgement?

Should I say that ‘enough is enough’, take the hit, and we should start again?

The answers to these and many other questions are particularly difficult when talking about the current Liverpool team. This is about a ‘work in progress’ and that means there can be many complex and often apparently contradictory feelings and factors for fans to weigh up.

‘They haven’t won a game since….’ argues with ‘But they are unbeaten since….’. ‘The new signings are not performing well’ wrestles with ‘We have a small squad and there have been injuries’. ‘It’s great to see the youngsters getting a chance’ battles with ‘We should not put all this pressure for success on such young players’. And so it goes on.

I’ve tried to find a way that helps make some sense of these conflicting thoughts and feelings. I’m going to suggest one name that may help here – Freddie Herzberg. For the majority that don’t know the name, he’s an American psychologist who was once ‘kind of a big deal’ in business management.

What follows is what I’d call my ‘Blue Peter’ introduction to Herzberg’s theory. This means I’ll try to cover his whole theory in two paragraphs. There will be those who ‘live and breathe’ this subject who will feel that I am oversimplifying it, and I’d be one of them. I’ve apologised to myself for that, but I am simply trying to give a brief overview of the model, and then quickly get back to the football, before readers have switched off and drifted away. Here goes….

Herzberg studied the subject of ‘Job Satisfaction’ and came up with a list of five factors that contributed to you feeling that the work you are doing is worthwhile:

Achievement – I feel I am getting things done

Development – I feel that I am doing things now that I wasn’t doing last year

Recognition – I feel my work is appreciated by others

Responsibility – I am given an appropriate level of responsibility

The Work Itself – I enjoy this line of work

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