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According to a survey conducted by Aon Hewitt in 2019, the Asia Pacific region had an overall employee engagement score of 60%, which was slightly lower than the global average of 63%. The highest engagement scores were found in India (74%) and China (72%).

When employees aren’t engaged, they don’t perform consistently and they are more likely to quit or reach dangerous levels of burnout. To help diagnose problems, develop effective interventions, and create a more positive and productive working culture, some companies are turning to organizational psychologists.

What is an organizational psychologist?

An organizational psychologist is a trained professional who applies principles of psychology to the workplace. They use their knowledge of human behavior, motivation, and organizational systems to improve workplace effectiveness and employee wellbeing.

Organizational psychologists typically have a combination of academic training and practical experience related to organizational behavior and workplace dynamics. They’re often found working at corporations, non-profit organizations, government agencies, and academic institutions. They may serve as consultants, researchers, or in-house professionals.

They can provide an objective perspective on the company culture, which can be difficult for employees and managers to achieve since they are often too close to the situation.

What kind of certifications does an organizational psychologist have?

To become an organizational psychologist, one usually needs at least a master’s degree in psychology. (For example: MindFi’s organizational psychologists and therapists all have a master’s degree or even greater). Many professionals in this field also hold a doctoral degree (Ph.D. or Psy.D.) in psychology or a related field. They’re experts on organizational behavior, human resources management, group dynamics, motivation, and leadership.

In addition to formal education, many organizational psychologists also seek certification from professional organizations such as the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP). SIOP offers several levels of certification, including the Certified Professional in Talent Development (CPTD) and the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).

Organizational psychologists may also pursue additional training and certifications in specialized areas such as executive coaching, conflict resolution, or diversity and inclusion. The specific training and certifications required for a career in organizational psychology can vary depending on the individual’s background, interests, and career goals.

What kind of theories would an organizational psychologist employ to support my employees?

Organizational psychology draws from a variety of theories and models to understand human behavior in the workplace.

Job Characteristics Theory

This theory suggests that certain job characteristics, such as skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and feedback, can lead to greater job satisfaction and motivation.

Social Learning Theory

This theory suggests that people learn by observing and imitating others. In the workplace, this can manifest in employees modeling behavior of their peers and managers, and through the use of role modeling and mentoring.

Expectancy Theory

This theory suggests that people are motivated to behave in certain ways based on their beliefs about the outcomes of their actions. In the workplace, this can manifest in employees’ expectations about their ability to perform a task successfully and the perceived outcomes of their work.

Transformational Leadership Theory

This theory suggests that leaders who inspire and motivate their followers to go beyond their self-interests and work towards a shared vision can lead to higher levels of engagement, performance, and job satisfaction.

These are just a few examples of the many theories and models from organizational psychology that are relevant to the workplace. Organizational psychologists use these theories and models to understand human behavior in the workplace and develop strategies for improving performance, well-being, and overall effectiveness.

How can an organizational psychologist help to transform companies for the better?

A survey conducted by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) found that the demand for organizational psychologists in the Asia Pacific region is on the rise.

The survey revealed that 70% of the companies surveyed in the region plan to increase their recruitment of psychologists in the next three years, with a focus on hiring professionals with expertise in areas such as leadership development, talent management, and organizational change management.

Here are some ways an organizational psychologist can help to improve company performance and culture.

Conducting Needs Assessments

Organizational psychologists can help companies identify areas that need improvement by conducting assessments of organizational processes and employee attitudes. These assessments can provide insights into areas such as communication, leadership, and organizational culture, and can help companies develop strategies to address any issues.

Designing and Delivering Training Programs

Organizational psychologists can design and deliver training programs to help employees develop the skills and competencies needed to perform their jobs effectively. These programs can include topics such as communication, conflict resolution, and leadership development.

Implementing Organizational Change

Organizational psychologists can help companies to implement change by developing strategies to manage resistance and promote acceptance of new ideas or processes. This can include providing coaching to leaders, facilitating communication and collaboration, and creating a culture of continuous improvement.

Promoting Diversity and Inclusion

Organizational psychologists can help companies to create a culture of diversity and inclusion by providing guidance on policies and practices that promote equal opportunities and reduce bias. This can include developing training programs to reduce bias, creating policies to support diversity, and facilitating communication and collaboration across different groups.

By helping companies to create a positive work environment, organizational psychologists can enhance employee engagement, productivity, and job satisfaction, leading to improved performance and success for the company.

Why should a company seek support from an organizational psychologist?

Investing in organizational psychology can have both direct and indirect financial returns for companies. Leaders might see increased productivity, for example: by addressing factors such as employee motivation, job satisfaction, and work design, organizational psychology interventions can increase productivity and efficiency, leading to cost savings and increased revenue.

By creating a positive work environment, organizational psychologists can also help minimize employee turnover, leading to cost savings associated with recruitment, hiring, and training.

Finally, organizational psychologists can help reduce absenteeism and presenteeism to help companies save more on lost productivity and healthcare expenses.

If you’re looking for a comprehensive mental health solution that leverages the expertise of organizational psychologists, why not schedule a chat with MindFi? By booking a demo, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the app firsthand and learn more about how it can help you prioritize the mental health and wellbeing of your employees.

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