Issues of Organizational Psychology
The study of human psychology plays a great role in the modern world. It helps to solve different social and personal problems and understand the nature of various conflicts. Nowadays, there are many separate disciplines, based on the psychology. All of them research different aspects of human lives. One of such disciplines is the organizational psychology.
Organizational psychology deals with the study of personal behavior in the workplace. In other words, it studies the relations between individuals and work in the process of earning for life. Organizational psychology investigates such issues as the problem of motivation at the workplace, the concept of leadership, the occupational stress, cultural diversity of the employees, occupational safety and health, and others. The main task of the organizational psychology is to study the nature of individual behavior at work with the main purpose of making the organization more effective and productive (Jex & Britt, 2008).
In fact, organizational psychology has a long history. It is a sub discipline of the industrial-social psychology. Its roots trace back to the period of the development of psychology as a science. W. Wundt cooperated with two scientists who have made a great impact on the development of the organizational psychology. They are H. Munsterberg and J. Cattell. James Cattell was the first who considered differences in the personal behavior to be not mistakes or deviations. He supposed them to play a great role in the distribution of the job positions. However, it can be stated that at that time, psychologists were more interested in the problem of personnel and skills acquiring. They paid little attention to the structure of the organization and the personal behavior of every worker (Katzell & Austin, 1992).
F.W. Taylor has also made a great contribution to the development of the organizational psychology. Although he was a non-psychologist, he described the principle of the scientific management (Taylor, 1911). Therefore, according to Taylor, each work organization should contain leaders, managers, and workers. All of them are equally important for the productivity of the organization. Moreover, he described three principles of the work organization. Firstly, some employees should manage the work while the others should perform it. Secondly, workers should have a strong motivation and appropriate incentives in order to provide high efficiency of work. Thirdly, there is a need to study a workplace from the scientific point of view (Jex & Britt, 2008, p. 10).
During World War II, organizational psychology studied the problem of moral and physical fatigue of workers in the military industry. In the 1960-s, the modern thinking and view of organizational psychology began to develop. The scientists of that time studied the personal behavior and attitude of the employees toward the work. Moreover, at that time, psychologists began to study collective behavior in the organization.
Organizational psychology is closely connected with many other scientific disciplines. One of them is sociology. As the organizational psychology deals with the studies of individuals in collectives, it has to cope with the problems of social conflicts, social roles, the concept of groups, and social relations between the employees. Moreover, it deals with the problem of cultural diversity at work and the concept of group thinking. The sociology operates these data, and therefore is relevant to the organizational psychology.
Moreover, organizational psychology is closely connected with organizational behavior. It is a distinct and separate scientific discipline, although it studies the similar problems. However, organizational behavior mainly aims at investigating of the interaction of the individuals in the group and the behavior of the organization itself (Jex & Britt, 2008). In addition, it studies the ways the organization influences the behavior of the workers. Therefore, it is clear that these disciplines have many similar features and relate to the same field of study.
Statistical data is an important element for the organizational psychology. It helps to control the process of the work, find regularities, and install laws based on the scientific researches. They can be presented in a form of the executive summary, complicated graphs and charts with different formulas (Jex and Britt, 2008). Organizational psychology uses different methods of research in order to get objective information. Thus, it applies to the observation, archival data, surveys, and experiments. The first method means simple observing of the individuals’ behavior at the workplace. It helps to identify any changes in the behavior quickly and exactly. Archival data helps to investigate the behavior with the help of the documents, reports, and other papers. Surveys include the series of questions which help to learn the personal opinions of the participants. Experiment can show the potential models of behavior in the ideal conditions (Jex and Britt, 2008).
Among the statistical methods most frequently used in the organizational psychology, one can name tests of mean differences, descriptive statistics, correlation, and meta-analysis. These methods help to determine the differences between two groups, the deviations in the individuals’ behavior and the character of the interaction between workers and organizations (Jex and Britt, 2008).
To sum up, organizational psychology is a distinct scientific discipline which deals with the study of the personal behavior in the organization. It studies the problem of the deviations, interactions of the group members, influence of the organization on the individuals’ behavior, and many other concepts. With the help of scientific methods of research, it aims at investigating of the nature of organization with the main purpose of making it more efficient and productive.