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Industrial psychology.docx

5 Pages

Course Code
Psychology 2990A/B
Doug Hazlewood

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Psychology on the job Prologue: The Historical Roots of Industrial-Organizational Psychology Industrial Psychology: Personnel selection and placement -1913: Munsterberg publishes “The Psychology of Industrial Efficiency” -to increase productivity; we should select people with skills that match the job requirements - 1917 (WW1): Industrial psychology merges in response to US army’s practical problem: - How to select the best soldiers? - Psychologists develop two intelligence tests: Army Alpha and Army Beta - Army Alpha – recruits who could read and write English - Army Beta – recruits couldn’t read or write English - Then, new tests to select best officers, best pilots; to eliminate most “neurotic” recrutis - Psychological test could be used to screen and classify large nubers of ppl - Then, businesses and schools want their own tests to select and classify ppl - If in army, why not in business or schools? - Eg: Even when applying to jobs, there are tests - Main goal is to evaluate and place them in appropriate jobs B. Organizational psychology (1924): - The Hawthorne studies at Western Electric plant (in Hawthrone Illinois) - the effect of environmental factors on productivity (eg: alering lights, temp, rest periods, etc) - any change – increased productivity! Eg: if the lighting was decreased, the worker productivity still increased!! - physical enviro is NOT as important as the social and psychological envir Eg: why this increase? Because they knew that were being observed (so they worked harder) - This is known to be called the Hawthrone Effect. Leadership in organization - Whether or not you are going to be satisfied is heavily dependent if you have any leadership roles in your job. Part 1: The effect of leaders on job satisfaction A. Survey Q: What is worst thing about your job (greatest source of stress)? Survey A: 75% said “my boss” - most common complaints about bosses: - unwilling to delegate authority to workers - abusive towards workers - treat workers as stupid and incompetent B. How do bad bosses become leaders? - best workers is promoted to leader positions - Potential problem? – being the best worker may have nothing to do with being a good leader, so this explains why there are bad bosses. Part 2: What makes a good leader? A. The Great person theory 1. Basic idea: Great leaders are born with special “traits” that allow them to take charge. 2. What are these traits? - we should be able to identify these traits… a. Longitudinal research: measure traits at time 1; see if any are related to leader effectiveness at later time (time 2) Eg: - Offiicer candidates in Canadian Armed Forces - only one trait emerged (dominance). b. Retrospective research: Find great leaders look back to see what traits they possessed. Eg: political leaders Why political leaders? - A lot of info is recorded in writing and this way we can look back to the past and see what kind of traits they might have. - Historians are more than willing to give out this info 1. which were the great political leaders ? – historians can give us this info. 2. Archived info about politicians and the traits can be studied from this - Canadian prime ministers: - Only one trait emerged: integrative complexity = ability to recognize and adopts multiple views of situation and integrate them Eg: Trudeau What makes American president great? - First Results – no traits were related to leader effectiveness - Later on Canadian psychologist reanalyzed the data… - Found three traits – smart, messy, achievement oriented 3. Conclusions: - hundreds of traits have been measured, but very few are related to leader effectiveness; - different studies identify different traits (not much consistency in findings); - so, not much support for the “great person” theory of leadership. Except… 4. Except for leader’s height? (not a trait) - Taller presidents rated as more effective leaders eg: Abraham Lincoln - Tallest president (6 ft 4 inches) and one of America’s greatest presidents - Taller candidates are more likely to be elected president - 1928 – 1996 taller candidate won in 16 of 18 president selections (89% of the time!). - 2000: G.W, Bush beat Al Gore (but Gore won more of popular vote). Who was taller? - Bush won b/c he had the most of amount of seats - Gore was taller by 2 inches - 2004: Bush beat Kerry, but Kerry was 4 inches taller - 2008: Obama beat McCain… Obama was 4 inches taller. - 2012?: Wait and see (tonight)… - Romney 6’2 inches and Obama 6’1 inches!!! Also note: - Managers on US corporations (both male and female) are on average 1” taller than non- managers. - Maybe “great person” theory should be renamed “great – big person” theory? - Are there other factors that might be related food leadership? B. Good leadership depends on the Situation 1. Leader traits might be effective in one situation but not another Eg: Integrative complexity of Can. Prime ministers went down in crisis situations (became less effective leaders). - only a few became even more IC in a crisis situations. - Eg: Lester Pearson and the “Suez Canal” crisis (1956) - Suez Canal – Egypt threatening this canal. This canal con
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