Behavioral Psychology as a Sensory Nerve Agent in the World of Business

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Table of content

  1. Introduction
  2. Personnel selection:
  3. Conflict management:
  4. Sales techniques:
  5. Customer satisfaction:
  6. Marketing, market research:
  7. Reorganization interventions:
  8. Performance psychology and anxiety management:
  9. Scholastic and vocational guidance:
  10. Conclusion

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Introduction

Psychology of Business and organizations applies the theoretical and methodological knowledge of psychology in order to increase the well-being and performance of companies and workers.

It is an interdisciplinary sector which, in addition to understanding psychology, also refers to economics and management, labor law, sociology, occupational medicine, ergonomics and engineering. For this reason, the occupational psychologist often collaborates with other figures such as managers, doctors, engineers and lawyers.

The occupational psychologist specifically deals with personnel selection and evaluation, training, health and safety at work (e.g. stress, mobbing, etc.), business organization, psychological support, professional guidance and marketing.

In summary, Occupational Psychology uses knowledge on cognitive processes (e.g. thinking, decisions, perception), behavioral and social to promote the success and well-being of people and organizations.

Here are some practical examples of how Work and Organizational Psychology works in practice

Personnel selection

Company “A” needs to find an experienced programmer to join their staff. It is therefore a question of selecting personnel with a view to recruiting.

The occupational psychologist is primarily concerned with making an analysis of the specific position (tasks and responsibilities) and the ideal profile of the candidate (skills, work experience, personality).

Subsequently, it searches for candidates through various channels (e.g. publication of advertisements), makes an initial selection of curricula, conducts selection interviews, administers any tests, conducts assessment centers.

Finally, the consultant reports to the client the profiles of the candidates examined, proposes the most suitable candidates and gives suggestions on how to insert them within the company.

The goal is to put the right man in the right place, thus avoiding the waste of time and money that comes with hiring unsuitable people for a certain position.

Conflict management

Company “B” complains of frequent conflicts between two colleagues that ruin the internal climate and damage production. It therefore requires conflict management intervention.

The occupational psychologist initially conducts individual interviews (interviews) with the client and interested parties to understand the situation. Then it proposes tailor-made interventions to solve the problem: for example, a training course on conflict management, company policies that punish conflicting behaviors and reward teamwork.

The goal is to maintain a good climate within the company, to foster collaboration, mutual respect and communication. It is important to avoid conflicts that damage internal relations, the quantity and quality of production.

Sales techniques

Company “C” wants to increase the sales of its products.

The occupational psychologist is contacted to teach the staff sales, communication and customer relationship techniques.

The goal is to increase sales by developing sales skills.

Customer satisfaction

Company “D” receives frequent complaints from customers and wants to understand what’s going on.

The occupational psychologist does a few short interviews with clients, especially those who have complained (interviews in person or on the phone). It therefore identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the service offered to customers. It proposes solutions to solve the problem (e.g. better work organization) and a customer satisfaction monitoring plan through ad hoc questionnaires.

The goal is to satisfy customers, that is, to keep them over time and prevent them from turning to another rival company. In addition, satisfied customers advertise free through word of mouth and generate new revenue.

Marketing, market research

Company “E” wants to launch a new product, but before selling it in stores, they want to make sure potential customers like it. In particular, he wants to understand what are any negative and positive aspects of the product, or to identify the characteristics that can facilitate or otherwise hinder the sale.

The occupational psychologist conducts focus groups (group discussions) with a sample of potential clients. Try to understand what they think about the product (Like? Is it useful? Is the cost adequate? Where would they buy it?). After collecting and analyzing the data, the psychologist provides a report to the client with any suggestions for improving the product, its distribution and advertising.

The goal is to facilitate the sale of the product, or to improve the marketing plan.

Reorganization interventions

In the last year, company “F” has lost customers, decreased turnover and experienced an increase in the level of stress in its staff.

The occupational psychologist first conducts interviews with some key figures within the company to understand the situation, the resources available and the specific criticalities.

Subsequently, he administers a short questionnaire to employees to get a measure of the criticalities detected with the interviews (e.g. excessive workloads, inadequate distribution of tasks, corporate communication problems).

Once all the data has been collected, the consultant writes a report and proposes the appropriate solutions, for example a redistribution of tasks and responsibilities by category of workers. It is therefore a question of reorganization.

The goal is to improve performance, increase efficiency and achieve a good level of organizational well-being.

Performance psychology and anxiety management

A worker (an athlete, a student, an artist) wants to increase their performance through better management of anxiety.

The occupational psychologist through an interview makes an analysis of the factors triggering anxiety (e.g. fear of making a bad impression) and the typical reactions of the person (e.g. palpitations, loss of concentration, panic).

Teaches the worker bodily and cognitive relaxation techniques, questions anxious beliefs and brings thoughts back to a rational and objective level (cognitive restructuring), teaches techniques to maintain concentration (eg internal dialogue).

The goal is for the person to increase the ability to control their thoughts and physiological reactions to achieve the desired goals.

Scholastic and vocational guidance

A person is undecided on which course of study to undertake, or on which job or profession to invest time and money.

During the interview, the psychologist analyzes the client’s interests, skills, potential, motivations and personality characteristics also with the help of tests. Explain what are the trends in the labor market, the most requested and paid professions.

Based on the client’s profile (skills, motivations, etc.) and labor market trends, it suggests the most suitable course of study or professional activity.

The goal is to guide the customer to choose a path in line with their personal motivations and characteristics, also taking into account the current socio-economic context.

Conclusion

The mission of Cognitive psychology is to increase the performance and well-being of people and organizations.

“ Success needs fertile ground, so if you don’t find it in your surroundings, try to create it, use the peer experience, always look for a medium in which you can grow…”

Troye Siadian

 

Behavioral psychology as a sensory nerve agent in the world of Business

Author : MNeuroSci – MSc – Troye Siadian

January 28, 2022

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