What is Organizational Psychology?
Psy 570/Organizational Psychology
February 20, 2012
Organizational psychology is a critical part of getting an organization or workplace to function in a productive and positive manner. Organizational psychology gives a glimpse into how a business is doing in terms of the workers. Some aspects looked at are the worker’s morale, attitudes, abiding policies, problems, etc. The subject can also help an organization to find possible routes that can help the organization thus creating a better working environment for the employees. In this paper organizational psychology will be defined, the evolution of organizational psychology will be examined, a comparison and contrast of social psychology, occupational health psychology, and organizational psychology will be conducted, and an analysis of the roles that research and statistics have in the field of organizational psychology. Organizational Psychology Defined
According to Jex and Britt (2008) organizational psychology “is a field that utilizes scientific methodology to better understand the behavior of individuals working in organizational settings” (p. 1); “is the study of individual and group behavior in formal organizational settings” (p. 2). Some claim that organizational psychology can be defined within formal and informal organizations but organizational psychology is more focused and concerned with formal organizations. Formal organizations can be family owned businesses, moderately sized corporation serving multiple cities, or even a company that has a name that is well known and has many facilities all over the United States. An organizational psychologist can be hired to see if set policies are working, if there could be tests made that help to better fill positions within to organization, make sure the employees at the organization are a fit for the department he or she is a part of, etc. Personal Insight
Organizational psychology is a part of most jobs and organizations if not all organizations and jobs. Most of the jobs that I have encountered were after I had received my bachelors in psychology. The jobs I applied for needed to see my degree to make sure I had the right credentials to fulfill the job. This would be considered a type of test to make sure people applying for certain jobs were truly qualified based on education required for the job. Evolution of Organizational Psychology
According to Schein (1996) organizational psychology has been evolving slowly over time with influences taken from social psychology, sociology, and anthropology. Organizational psychology has been around since the early 1960s (Schein, 1996) and has since changed and evolved into what it is today. It all started with trying to be able to understand how an organization functions and how an organization can thrive. It was found that early on when organizational psychology started that organization were being mean to people and that those attitudes were then adopted by the workers (Schein, 1996). The cycle continued and helps to shape organizational psychology to be a field that would help with the treatment of the workers to produce more productive behaviors. In today’s time, organizational psychologist help to develop testing to help position future employees as well as develop or reconstruct polices to help make a positive and productive working environment. Personal Insight
When thinking about the evolution of organizational psychology, it is easy for me to recognize people in the field. My last job had a department head that was named “Quality Management Officer.” What this person did was to look over policies and procedures and made sure that it was in the best interest of the employees as a whole. Making sure policies and procedures are up to date and are in good workings for the employees makes for happier more productive employees. Comparison and Contrast...
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Jex, S.M., & Britt, T.W. (2008). Organizational psychology: A scientist-practitioner approach (2nd ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
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