28 Mar 2018
Psychology in Organizations
Industrial organizational (I/O) psychology is the study of individual and group behaviors in the workplace. The field utilizes methodology, statistical analysis, and recording observations of how people interact and function in the workplace. This can include populations in business, non-profit, academic, government, and other organizations. This enables the I/O psychologist to analyze and interpret data, draw conclusions from the results, and provide solutions for employee problems in an organization (Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 2015). These solutions can improve the culture of the organization and promote positive relationships in the human aspect of business.
Definition of Industrial Organizational Psychology
I/O psychologists are generally specialized trained individuals who can be practicing researchers, leadership, human resource specialists, teachers, administrators, and other applicable professions. I/O psychologists are typically trained in seven core practices which are as follows:
Benefits of I/O Psychology in the Work Place
The field of I/O psychology generally requires the individual to be knowledgeable in research, statistical data analysis, measuring the effects of culture on the work environment (Folkman, 2012), comparing variables, job and task analysis, ethics training, and leadership abilities are all considered necessary components of this field.
There are multiple benefits from utilizing I/O psychology in the workplace. I/O’s can improve productivity, promote succession training, plan for growth, minimize the negative effects of downsizing, devise employee training programs, and resolve many other personnel issues. I/O’s are also generally privy to current changing trends and laws, new technology, and globally evolving work place environments. Some examples are as follows:
Incorporating I/O into Business Strategies
Incorporating I/O psychology in the workplace requires an investment of time and resources; however this cost can be overridden by the monetary savings and the reduced loss of experienced and valuable employees (Noe, 2009). Some of the ways that I/O can be implemented in a business strategic method of operations is by facilitating on-going training for new and current employees. Keeping employees up to date on new products, competitors, trends, and regulations is imperative for maintaining sustainable product knowledge which in turn increases productivity and profitability (Johnston, 2015).
Utilizing I/O psychology in the recruiting, hiring, and classification process is a necessary component towards achieving and maintaining the organization’s goals. Implementing I/O principles in a company’s recruitment and hiring practices can greatly improve the chances of acquiring the best individuals for a position. Screening tools such as personality and ability assessment tests are particularly useful for matching primary candidates to positions (Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 2015).
Communication is important to developing and maintaining group cohesion within an organization. Open, positive, and informative communicative avenues such as email, company intranet, instant messaging, telecommunications, web seminars, online information, and other methods of exchanging information assist in improving the transfer of knowledge, propose projects, exchange operational information, learn new policies and procedures, and formulate creative ideals between employees. This ability of interpersonal communication enables individuals and groups to openly communicate with co-workers (Hutchins, Burke, & Berthelsen, 2010).
Many organizations, institutions, social groups, society, communities, and individuals typically recognize the impact of factors such as increasing government influences, changing state and federal laws, growing consumer awareness regarding product value and environmental sustainability, skill and talent shortages, and the ever evolving nature of the work place. These in turn increase productivity and profitability. I/O psychologists facilitate responses to real life issues and problems involving people at work by serving as advisors and catalysts for business, industry, labor, public, academic, community, and health organizations (Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, 2015).
American Psychological Association. (2014). Psychology:Science in Action. Retrieved March 2, 2015, from Industrial and Organizational Psychology Provides Workplace Solutions: http://apa.org/action/science/organizational/index.aspx
Dauber, D., Fink, G., & Yolles, M. (2012, April 17). A configuration model of organizational culture. SAGE Open, 1-31.
Folkman, J. (2012, July 23). Are you creating disgruntled employees? Harvard Business Review; Managing People, pp. 1-2.
Hutchins, H. M., Burke, L. A., & Berthelsen, A. M. (2010). A missing link in the transfer problem? Examining how trainers learn about training transfer. Human Resource Management, 599-618.
Johnston, K. (2015). What are the benefits of organizational psychology within the workplace. Retrieved March 1, 2015, from Houston Chronicle: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/benefits-organizational-psychology-within-workplace-26259.html
Noe, R. A. (2009). Employee Training and Development (5th ed.). New York, New York, U.S.A.: McGraw-Hill Learning Solutions.
Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. (2015). Industrial and Organizational Psychology . Retrieved Febuary 28, 2015, from Society for Industrial Organizational Psychology: http://www.siop.org/history/crsppp.aspx
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