Recognition programs work because they meet the basic human need for esteem, confidence, and respect. When organizations strive to meet this need in their employees, their recognition programs produce better results because their employees become even more successful.
Abraham Maslow was a psychologist who studied human needs in the 1940s. In his research, Maslow found that highly successful people have satisfied their basic human needs. Basic human needs include food, water, sleep, security, friendship or family, confidence or esteem, respect, and morality. The needs build on each other in a pyramid-like fashion. The lowest ranked need must be met before the next set of needs can be achieved.