Psychology / Psychological Type Cartoon
Even though psychology is a relatively young profession, workplace or organizational issues have been of great interest to psychologists since its foundation over one hundred years ago. This is not so much because the majority of people spend about a third of their adult lives at work (although this is undoubtedly important) but because the workplace forces people to have to deal with each other in so many different and potentially interesting ways (working alone and in small and large teams of varying types with a variety of roles and goals).
The realms of different interest to a psychologist as far as the workplace is concerned are therefore legion but many of these should be of equal interest to today’s leader also. This is simply because anyone who manages people can benefit from a broad appreciation of the latest thinking in this field, and primarily using it as a way of gaining advantage in leading individuals to more successful results.
The main areas of current industrial or organizational psychological interest are many but fall into theories about job and task design, team make-up and dynamics, the role of team leader, ways of managing individual performance/motivation and even what is likely to be an optimal organizational culture. And at the root of all of these topics is the question of “how can we best think about individual personality and type differences and what difference does this make to success?”