Psychology 2990A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Pierre Trudeau, Lester B. Pearson, Industrial And Organizational Psychology

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November 8, 2016
Lecture 6 Psychology on the Job
Prologue: The Historical Roots of Industrial Organizational Psychology
A. Industrial psychology: Personnel selection and placement
1913: Munsterberg (German psychologist) publishes The Psychology of Industrial Efficiency” book
o To increase productivity, select people with skills that match the job requirements
He laid the ground work for Personnel selection (selecting the right person for the job)
1917 (WWI): Industrial psych emerges in response to US army’s practical problem:
How to select the best soldiers?
Psychologists develop 2 intelligence tests to select the best soldiers: Army Alpha and Army Beta
1. Army Alpha: To recruit soldiers who can read/write English
2. Army Beta: To recruit soldiers who can’t read/write English
Then, new tests to select best officers, best pilots; eliminate most “neurotic” recruits
Psychological tests could be used to screen and classify large numbers of people
Then, businesses and schools want their own tests to select and classify people
B. Organizational Psychology (1924):
The Hawthorne studies at Western Electric plant (in Hawthorne Illinois)
o The effect of environmental factors on productivity (eg: altering lights, temp, etc)
Any environmental factor change increased productivity
The physical environment is NOT as important as the social & psychological environment
o Eg: employees knew they were being observed (so they worked harder)
Known as the Hawthorne Effect
Leadership in Organizations
Part 1: The Effect of Leaders on Job Satisfaction
A. Survey Q: What is the worst thing about your job (ie. greatest source of stress)?
Survey A: 75% saidmy boss
Most common complaints about bosses:
1. Unwilling to delegate authority to workers: not allowed to make decisions on their own
2. Abusive towards workers
3. Treat workers as stupid and incompetent
B. How do bad bosses become leaders?
Best workers are promoted to leader positions
Problem: being a good worker might have nothing to do with being a good leader
Part 2: What Makes a Good Leader
A. The Great Person Theory of Leadership
1. Basic idea: Great leaders are born with special “traits” that allow them to take charge and lead the group
2. What are these traits?
(a) Longitudinal research: Measure variety of traits at time 1; see if any are related to leader effectiveness at
later time (time 2). Eg:
Officer candidates in Canadian Armed Forces for a period of 5 years
o Many traits were measured
o Only 1 trait emerged that was related to leader effectiveness 5 years later (dominance)
(b) Retrospective research: Find great leaders; look back to see what traits they possessed. Eg: political
leaders. 2 good reasons for this:
1. Many historical records/documents for these leaders can look back in time to look for traits
2. Historians were specialized to rank political leaders in terms of greatness can choose the
greatest leaders to study.
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Document Summary

Prologue: the historical roots of industrial organizational psychology. November 8, 2016: industrial psychology: personnel selection and placement. 1913: munsterberg (german psychologist(cid:895) pu(cid:271)lishes (cid:862)the psychology of industrial efficiency(cid:863) (cid:271)ook: to increase productivity, select people with skills that match the job requirements. He laid the ground work for personnel selection (selecting the right person for the job) 1917 (wwi): industrial psych emerges in response to u ar(cid:373)(cid:455)"s practical problem: Psychologists develop 2 intelligence tests to select the best soldiers: army alpha and army beta: army alpha: to recruit soldiers who can read/write english, army beta: to recruit soldiers who (cid:272)a(cid:374)"t read/(cid:449)rite e(cid:374)glish. Then, new tests to select best officers, best pilots; eliminate (cid:373)ost (cid:862)neurotic(cid:863) re(cid:272)ruits. Psychological tests could be used to screen and classify large numbers of people. Then, businesses and schools want their own tests to select and classify people: organizational psychology (1924):

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