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Chapter 17

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Chapter 17 : Industrial and Organizational Psychology *The notes on chapter 17 are based directly off the textbook, lecture material is not included because it will not be on the exam. I hope that’s okay with everyone!* 17.1 Personnel Psychology: Hiring and Maintaining an Effective Workforce - Frank and Lillian Gilbreth: pioneers in field known as industrial and organizational (I/O) psychology as efficiency experts. - The span of psychological science ranges from a laboratory-based discipline to a highly applied, practical one. - Industrial and Organizational (I/O) Psychology: scientific study of behaviour and thought in work settings. - Field of I/O serves 3 main goals: 1. To help employers deal with employees fairly. 2. To help make jobs more interesting and satisfying. 3. To help workers be more productive. - I/O emerged in the late 1800s from a desire to develop management practices that would have the same degree of precision as engineering. - There was therefore a merging of engineering and psychology into industrial psychology. - Personnel psychology: focus on hiring people with potential, ensuring they are adequately trained, managing and motivating employees, and evaluating performance. - Organizational psychology: focus on the culture and organizational qualities of work. Job Analysis: Understanding the Requirements for the Job - I/O psychologists are systematic, provide operational definitions, collect data, and use many other basic principles adopted by laboratory psychologists. - Job Analysis: the process of writing a detailed description of a position in terms of the required knowledge, abilities, skills, and other characteristics required to succeed, as well as evaluating the value of the position for the overall organization. - Psychologists identify the KSAOs: the knowledge, skills, abilities, and other traits required for the specific job. - Psychologists turn to a variety of sources for this task: - Incumbents (people who already hold the job) - their supervisors - subject-matter experts (people who have technical expertise related to the job) - Job Crafting: taking on or creating additional roles and tasks for a position over time. - Occupational Information Network (O*NET): a collection of databases that describes jobs from six domains. (The O*NET Concept Chart is on page 623 of the textbook). Selection: Hiring the Right People - The ideal worker is someone whose KSAOs match those required for the job. INTERVIEWS: - unstructured interview: an employer discusses a variety of job- and personality-related topics with a candidate with relatively few prepared questions to guide the conversation. Employer can draw reasonably accurate conclusions about applicant’s personality, but the interview can get off track. - structured interview: 1. Present the same set of questions to each job candidate with planned (rather than unstructured) follow-up questions. 2. Questions drawn directly from the job analysis to ensure each is relevant to position. 3. Interviewer is trained to follow the same procedures in each interview, ensures consistency of all interviews. - situational interview questions: questions about how the candidate would respond to a situation that is relevant to the job. - validation studies: researchers administer tests to a large sample of incumbents and evaluate their performance to find correlations between job performance and personality traits or cognitive abilities. Used by I/O psychologists to determine which personality traits are associated with success or failure in a specific position. - Big Five/ Five Factor Model (measured by the NEO-PI) personality traits: -Neuroticism (versus emotional stability) -Extraversion -Openness -Agreeableness -Conscientiousness COGNITION-BASED SELECTION TESTS: - situational judgment tests: put applicants in hypothetical situations. These tests are correlated with cognitive ability and predict job performance better than self-report personality tests. - Cognitive tests may introduce stereotype threat – a phenomenon in which a person unintentionally conforms to a stereotype. THE ASSESSMENT CENTER: - Assessment centers capitalize on multiple approaches to personnel selection by combining personality, cognitive, and sometimes physical ability tests. An assessment center actually refers to the process, not the location where it takes place. - Unique aspect of assessment centers are the reliance on multiple raters, increasing the validity of the process. - Job simulations: role-playing activities that are very similar to situations encountered in the actual job. -A related activity is the in-basket technique: in which prospective employees sort through a set of incoming tasks and respond to them as if they were actual tasks. - Assessment centers have higher validity than situational judgment tests or cognitive instruments, though they can be time consuming and expensive to operate. Performance Appraisal - Performance Appraisal: the evaluation of current employees WHAT NEEDS TO BE EVALUATED? - Task Performance: describes how well an employee performs the assigned duties for his or her position in the organization - Organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB): the degree to which an employee contributes beyond what is expected (e.g. exceptional teamwork, leadership). - Counterproductive behaviour: includes actions that interfere with one’s own (and sometimes others’) productivity, such as absenteeism, lateness, dishonesty, and inappropriate interpersonal behaviours. WHO CONDUCTS THE EVALUATION? -Traditionally, employee evaluation is for the immediate supervisor to review the employee’s work over a period of time and provide feedback. - The supervisor has only one perspective: a top-down perspective. A clever employee may be substandard in many aspects of the job but have the ability to present a positive image to the boss. - 360-degree feedback (or multisource assessment): provides evaluation information from many different perspectives within and beyond an organization. The 360-degree analogy reminds us that the employee receives feedback from all angles. These assessments include information from an employee’s co-workers, anyone whom he may supervise, and perhaps customers or clientele that he might serve. The employee may even rate themselves.  Covers all aspects of the job: workload, productivity, leadership, teamwork, service, etc.  However, power structures in an organization might appear to be threatened.  Specifically, managers may not take subordinate feedback seriously. PREVENTING BIAS IN EVALUATION - Halo effect: an error in which a rater thinks highly about one aspect of an employee’s job or personality and this leads him or her to provide similar ratings for other aspects of the employee’s work. - Contrast effect: occurs when a rater evaluates one employee who is very strong in a number of dimensions such that, by comparison, the next employee is likely to appear weak, even if he is an average worker by other measures. - Appraisals are essential to successful businesses because they promote positive behaviours and create opportunities to correct negative behaviours. These assessments are infrequent and therefore managers must rely on their memories to evaluate employees, leaving a large opening for errors. Thus, systematic methods should be used along with multiple points of view. 17.2 Affect, Attitudes, and Behaviour at Work Employee Affect, Attitudes, and Job Satisfaction - I/O psychologists have become increasingly interested in researching affect – individuals’ emotional responses – regarding their jobs and work in general. - Positive Affect (PA): the tendency to experience positive emotions such as happiness, satisfaction, and enthusiasm. - Negative Affect (NA): the tendency to experience negative emotions, including frustration, anger, and distress. - Trait affectivity: a tendency to experience more of one type (PA or NA) than the other - At least two important reasons for I/O psychologists’ interest in affect:  Happier is smarter hypothesis: Employees who have PA traits seem to make better decisions and may also be more creative. PA is associated with teamwork, general performance, etc.  When PA or NA becomes so consistent that it is as reliable as personality traits, this attitude can influence job satisfaction or dissatisfaction. JOB SATISFACTION VERSUS BURNOUT - Positive or negative thoughts about work are expressed as job attitudes, a combination of affect and thoughts an employee holds about his or her job. - Job satisfaction: refers to the degree to which an employee is content with his or her work, most likely to be achieved by people with positive job attitudes. - honeymoon period: the sense of intense satisfaction as a result of starting a new job - job satisfaction typically rises and falls throughout a career. The lower periods may include: - Burnout: a
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