How Maslow's pyramid helped me understand why people quit

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Maslow’s hierarchy of needs 

The other day I read that twitter thread from Paul Graham on learnings:

One of the comment was pretty enlightening.

We all have heard of Maslow’s Pyramid. It’s a simple and effective way to understand human psychology.

As a Software engineer, you then forget about it because human psychology is not exactly core to the job. Or is it ?

… applied to retaining talent in tech startups 

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

Where it becomes really interesting is when you apply it to yourself vis-a-vis your job. What’s your motivation? What can explain your ups and downs there?

We’ve all seen seemingly-happy colleagues quit. And this refresher gave me a framework to understand why they quit.

Is it for money ๐Ÿ’ฐ- or physiological needs ? (witnessed that a couple times : usually a swing of 10kโ‚ฌ per year gross is enough)

Is it for lack of safety ๐Ÿ˜ฑ ? (saw some of that in my time in the incubator)

Is it for lack of belonging or esteem ๐Ÿ’– - or psychological needs ?

Is it for lack of self fulfillment ?

What to do as a company 

Physiological needsPaying Market rate, Nice Office
Safety needsBusiness plan, Investment rounds, Transparent comms
Belongingness and love needsCompany culture, Team fit, Friday beers, Lunch roulettes
Esteem needsClear team roles, Regular public recognition, Reward for performance
Self-actualization needsCompany mission, the rest is on the employee