As a psychology minor, I’ve always been interested in the science behind behavior and thought.
Asch’s conformity experiment, for instance, taught me the power and influence of groupthink.
Alternatively, the foot in the door technique (Freedman & Fraser, 1966), showed me the importance of asking for small requests first.
When I began working at HubSpot, I again noticed the extreme relevance of psychology in the workplace. I told a coworker about Amy Cuddy’s power posing technique, which enabled her to feel more confident before her marketing presentation.
Additionally, I used my DiSC analysis to better understand how my behavior might be perceived by coworkers, and used that information to communicate more effectively with each member of my team.
All of which is to say — psychology doesn’t just have a place in the liberal arts. It has a place in the workplace, as well.
Psychology tactics can help you become a more effective leader, a happier employee, or a stronger public speaker.
Simply put, learning about psychology can make you more successful.
Which is why we’ve created this series.
Here, we’re going to dive into a broad overview of what psychology can help you accomplish in the workplace. Additionally, we’ve linked resources at the bottom if you’re interested in reading individual posts from this series.
Incorporating Psychology At Work
All departments in the workplace can benefit from learning and using psychology-based strategies, but certain departments benefit from different aspects of psychology. Let’s break down some of those differences now.
Recruitment and psychology
Your HR and recruitment teams need to focus on psychology that suggests implicit biases may affect your hiring process. For instance, research has shown masculine language in a job description, including adjectives like “competitive” and “determined,” results in women often believing they won’t fit into the work environment. By ensuring gender-neutral language in your recruitment materials, you’re more likely to receive a higher number of equally qualified candidates from both men and women.
Additionally, it’s critical your recruiters are aware of any unfair judgments they might make against candidates based upon stereotypes. Doris Weichselbaumer, a professor at Johannes Kepler University Linz, in Linz, Austria, conducted research that showed when a fictitious character wore a headscarf in her resume photo, she needed to send almost five times as many applicants as the woman without a headscarf, to receive the same number of callbacks for interviews.
In general, psychology having to do with stereotypes, body language, implicit biases, language, tone, and emotion are most likely to improve your recruitment process, and help HR deal with mitigating internal conflict, as well.
Leadership and psychology
Anyone in a leadership position can benefit from incorporating psychology tactics in the workplace. At the most fundamental level, it’s critical as a leader that you’re able to develop empathy and a level of self-awareness that will allow you to engage and inspire your employees.
Research has found three areas where it’s critical f