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All posts; Tags Include "Industrial/Organizational Psychology"

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  • January 15, 2012
  • 07:14 PM
  • 818 views

How does a song from a musical teach us about being happy at work?

by David Lurie in Setsights

If you’re reading this post via RSS or Email, please come and visit the website this week – it has been re-launched with a brand new redesign and a narrower focus on the services and consultancy I provide. I would appreciate comments! As long-time readers of the blog know, I’m a strong believer in making [...]
No related posts.... Read more »

  • January 12, 2012
  • 09:30 AM
  • 768 views

Students Find Multiple-Choice Tests Fun and Rewarding with Gamification

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

In a recent study by Landers and Callan[1], undergraduates completed optional multiple-choice tests online and reported them, on average, as “fun”, “enjoyable”, and “rewarding”. They did this in the context of an online social network platform previously covered on this blog.  Students were awarded badges (social rewards) in exchange for completing optional practice tests theorized [...]
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  • January 9, 2012
  • 08:02 AM
  • 1,182 views

When are jurors more apt to blame the ‘rogue employee’ than the corporation?

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

This past year, we’ve been intrigued several times to have mock jurors give large corporations a pass and instead place blame on individual employees. While they, in every case, understood that corporations are responsible for the behavior of their employees, they wanted to make it clear they did not blame the company. In a sense, [...]
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  • December 20, 2011
  • 11:44 AM
  • 908 views

What Attracts Us to Power?

by Eric Horowitz in peer-reviewed by my neurons

Uncle Ben may have seemed like an over-zealous advice-giving old kook when he harped to Spiderman that ”with great power comes great responsibility,” but now there is some science hinting at the wisdom of his words. According to a new study, people are much more attracted to power when they construe it as opportunity rather than [...]... Read more »

  • December 20, 2011
  • 08:48 AM
  • 784 views

Does a man's facial dimensions influence his leadership performance?

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

You might notice thatmany studies we cover rely on survey rating data. This reflects thefield's research focus and its desire for 'ecological validity' -examining real-world contexts rather than simplified laboratoryset-ups. Nonetheless, as someone with a heterodox psychologybackground, I find it heartening when studies choose more imaginativemeasures.Here's a great example,entirely rating-free: a study that evaluates whether male CEOappearance affects company performance by actually measuring C........ Read more »

  • December 19, 2011
  • 06:34 AM
  • 740 views

Impediments to private sector careers for women in science, engineering, and technology

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Morethan ever, women are taking advanced degrees in SET subjects:science, engineering and technology. Yet a 'leaky pipeline' meanswomen are significantly under-represented at higher levels inacademia. What's the experience of those who take their expertiseinto the private SET sector? A recent study investigates. AuthorsLisa Servon and M Anne Visser surveyed 2,493 women who hold or haveheld SET management positions in private companies, following up withfocus groups. Many women experienced a gri........ Read more »

  • December 9, 2011
  • 01:28 PM
  • 1,131 views

How mixing work incentives put us on the horns of a dilemma

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

To encourage collaboration, many organisations structure incentives so that whole groups are rewarded – or not - based on their collective output. However, the groups-eye view allows for social loafing, where people shirk duties and assume team-mates will carry their load, so it's tempting to keep everyone accountable by adding incentives to individual performance too. Christopher Barnes and his colleagues set out to see just how these mixed incentives turn out in practice.The researchers used........ Read more »

  • December 7, 2011
  • 09:30 AM
  • 5,232 views

Where to Place Demographics on Your Surveys

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

One of the questions faced by survey designers is presentation order. Does it matter if I put the demographics first? Should I put the cognitive items up front because they require more attention? If I put 500 personality items in a row, will anyone actually complete this thing? Some recent research in the Journal of [...]
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  • December 1, 2011
  • 10:48 AM
  • 1,217 views

Formal mentoring relationships gain momentum over time

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Thesupport that mentors offer can have considerable benefits, for boththeir proteges and the organisation at large. Recognising this, manydevelop formal mentoring programs to encourage and manage thisprocess. However, such a managed system provides different conditionsto an informal one, where parties identify an alignment of person andcircumstance. Frankie Weinberg and Melenie Lankau at the Universityof Georgia decided to explore what this means for mentorcontributions within formal mentoring r........ Read more »

  • November 29, 2011
  • 06:38 AM
  • 1,022 views

What makes a great programmer?

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Experience and brutebrainpower enhance programming skill by helping programming knowledgeto build over time, rather than by directly boosting currentperformance, according to a new article in the Journal of IndividualDifferences.Authors Gunnar RyeBergersen and Jan-Eric Gustafsson put 65 professional programmersthrough their paces for two straight days, tackling twelve meatytasks in the Java language to prove their programming skill; this waswhat the study ultimately wanted to better understand.P........ Read more »

  • November 28, 2011
  • 06:29 AM
  • 953 views

Cynicism is bad for business

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

When someone we trust takes us for a ride, the bump back to earth is something we're unlikely to forget. But when we suspiciously reject an offer from someone else, we may never know what we've missed out on due to too little trust. Over time, such asymmetries in feedback can tip us toward an unwarranted cynical stance. It's clear that cynicism is as unhelpful a bias as naivety: it leads to guarded communication, reduced  sharing, and more self-serving biases, all of which may cause interac........ Read more »

  • November 26, 2011
  • 12:03 PM
  • 677 views

On Schemas at Work

by David Lurie in Setsights

I haven’t blogged in a while – it has been an extremely intense couple of months here and clients always come first. But did you assume that’s why I hadn’t been blogging? We all view the world through our own … Continue reading


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Duffy, M., Ganster, D., & Pagon, M. (2002) SOCIAL UNDERMINING IN THE WORKPLACE. Academy of Management Journal, 45(2), 331-351. DOI: 10.2307/3069350  

  • November 22, 2011
  • 12:19 PM
  • 593 views

New Research Links Social Media Marketing and Purchase Intentions

by Richard Landers in NeoAcademic

One of the biggest challenges associated with this newfangled social media is demonstrating monetary return on investment (ROI).  A properly run social media campaign can be very expensive, as it takes a lot of time to properly engage an audience.  Up to this point, there has been little to link social media to ROI other [...]
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  • November 21, 2011
  • 09:47 AM
  • 791 views

Provoking behaviour: training roleplayers at assessment centres

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Assessment days for evaluating work-relevant behaviours ofapplicants or job incumbents often draw on actors to perform as difficultteam-members or curious clients in meeting simulations. A recent study hasshown that these role-playing actors can be trained to effectively weave pre-writtendialogue prompts into the improvised simulations. However, whether this helpsmeasurement of participant behaviours is less clear.The study authors Eveline Schollaert and Filip Lievens gave19 role-players trainin........ Read more »

Schollaert, E., & Lievens, F. (2011) The Use of Role-Player Prompts in Assessment Center Exercises. International Journal of Selection and Assessment, 19(2), 190-197. DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2389.2011.00546.x  

  • November 14, 2011
  • 04:08 PM
  • 1,341 views

The Return of Physiognomy

by The Neurocritic in The Neurocritic

Physiognomy "is the assessment of a person's character or personality from their outer appearance, especially the face." Although one might think of physiognomy as an outdated pseudoscience, along with its brethren craniometry and phrenology, facial phenotyping has undergone a resurgence of interest. Most recently, a study by Wong et al. (2011) looked at facial width and financial success in male CEOs:Can head shape determine chances of business success?Research suggests that the shape of a chi........ Read more »

  • November 14, 2011
  • 12:21 PM
  • 1,085 views

MBA early career challenges: handling others and reconceiving yourself

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

MBA courses are meant to prepare their students to become effective business leaders, and give a lot of attention to that goal. This mid-late career focus makes it reasonable to wonder how MBA graduates are equipped for their earlier career, when they take their classroom knowledge to a managerial role with significant responsibilities. Beth Benjamin and Charles O'Reilly of Stanford University conducted a qualitative investigation into early-career challenges for 55 such “manager-graduates”,........ Read more »

Benjamin, B., & O'Reilly, C. (2011) Becoming a Leader: Early Career Challenges Faced by MBA Graduates. The Academy of Management Learning and Education, 10(3), 452-472. DOI: 10.5465/amle.2011.0002  

  • November 8, 2011
  • 05:30 AM
  • 820 views

Extreme numbers influence initial salary offers

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Despite some schools of thought, it's generally to your advantage to name a price first in negotiations. This is thanks to the anchoring effect, where presenting a value skews later judgments towards it.  There is plenty of evidence that setting salary for a new role is influenced by relevant anchors, such as the applicant stating their previous pay or expectations for this job. But decision-making research suggests that estimates and attributions can be influenced by even arbitrary and ext........ Read more »

  • October 27, 2011
  • 09:09 AM
  • 784 views

Black and white applicants more engaged by diversity-friendly recruitment websites

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Organisations don't make recruitment websites for their own gratification, but to attract applicants. Ideally, they want informed ones who've gathered a realistic sense of whether the organisation is for them. So recruiters should take note: a recent study has shown that sites that present cues of racial diversity encourage both black and white applicants to browse for longer and encode more information about the organisation.H. Jack Walker and colleagues had expected that racial diversity cues ........ Read more »

  • October 25, 2011
  • 07:14 AM
  • 1,374 views

Charisma involves teachable behaviours

by Alex Fradera in BPS Occupational Digest

Is charisma innate or can we acquire it? This question has preoccupied scholars of leadership certainly since Max Weber proposed it was a gift "not accessible to everybody" over a century ago. Research suggests charismatic leadership - the use of ideology and emotion to rouse feeling and motivations - involves explicit behaviours, such as body language techniques, showing moral conviction and using metaphor. Is it possible to teach these so-called charismatic leader tactics (CLTs), and does this........ Read more »

Antonakis, J., Fenley, M., & Liechti, S. (2011) Can Charisma Be Taught? Tests of Two Interventions. The Academy of Management Learning and Education, 10(3), 374-396. DOI: 10.5465/amle.2010.0012  

  • October 24, 2011
  • 03:52 PM
  • 657 views

On Belbin Team Roles and Research

by David Lurie in Setsights

Belbin. As profiling tools go, there is nothing (except perhaps Myers-Briggs, which has a very different use) which I think is valuable. I’ve used it as part of Setsights and as part of Belbin suggests 9 team roles, which frequently … Continue reading


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