Posted by & filed under Emerging Adulthood, Human Development, Industrial Organizational Psychlology, Industrial Organizational Psychology, Motivation-Emotion, Personality, Social Psychology, Stress Coping - Health, Stress: Coping Reducing, Student Success, The Self.

Description: As we start into another fall term (and before things get so crazy busy or chaotic that we cannot think about anything “extra”) it is a good time to plant some reflective seeds that we can let out mind worry away at and that could grow into strategies, ideas, or approaches that could REALLY help us make decisions and live better. Whether you are doing this (entering a post-secondary fall term) for the first time or whether you have been there and done all that we tend to get down to life business with more focus and purpose as the season shifts from summer to fall. It is a challenging tie in history to be needing to make personal life decisions. There is a LOT of uncertainty and other anxiety promoting trends and situations floating around. Thankfully, Psychology has been doing a lot of research over the past few decades that has produced findings we can use and that will actually help. In areas such as Industrial/Organizational I/O) Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Positive Psychology, and cognitive psychology (and neuroscience too) research is looking at how we make decisions and at how we can make them better. Some of the articles you might run across mention that research exists but really do not talk about it much while other articles dig in and explain what the research involved and what it has to tell you (or suggest to you). The article linked below asks a good question. How can you figure out if you have the ability, motivation, and determination to do a particular job that you have never done before? Think about it and then read through the article and see if what it says matches what you came up with.

Source: How to test your potential to do a job you’ve never done before: Can you succeed in a job without prior experience? Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Fast Company.

Date: August 28, 2018


Article Links:

The article linked above touches on a few increasingly common and poignant markers of modern life. The link between post-secondary education/training and job demands is often unclear, many, not so far into the future jobs do not exist yet, and these things make it hard to decide what jobs/organizations to look into or to pursue. The article goes on to pick up on an increasingly important life planning (developmental life designing) thread; that you will make all these life tasks easier and potentially have them lead to a more fulfilling work course and life course if you reflect on yourself and factor what you find out about yourself into your life-planning process and into picking which job(s) to try on for size. Indicators on person/workplace “fit” from I/O psychology, engagement and intrinsic motivation from Positive Psychology, or identity work and developmental life design from emerging adulthood research in Developmental Psychology are all enriching how we make life decisions and, as a result, offering the potential of better lives. So, start by examining your personality not just as part of a course assignment but as rich source of insight into what you may find interesting, curious, and engaging.  Then take both the results of that review and the experience of doing it and head out and take on the world.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. What is intrinsic motivation and why is it a good thing to have?
  2. What are some ways in which you can use and get some developmental life-planning mileage out of a detailed personality profile?
  3. How might doing a few of these suggested things, in itself, be an asset for you in your next job interview?

References (Read Further):

U.S. Department of Labor, Futurework: Trends and Challenges for Work in the 21st Century. (September 1999)

Institute for the Future (2017) The next era of human/machine partnerships: Emerging technologies’ impact on society and work in 2030. IFTF, Palo Alto, CA.

Mackey, J. D., Perrewé, P. L., & McAllister, C. P. (2017). Do I fit in? Perceptions of organizational fit as a resource in the workplace stress process. Group & Organization Management, 42(4), 455-486.

Chen, P., Sparrow, P., & Cooper, C. (2016). The relationship between person-organization fit and job satisfaction. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 31(5), 946-959.

Wang, Z., Zhang, J., Thomas, C. L., Yu, J., & Spitzmueller, C. (2017). Explaining benefits of employee proactive personality: The role of engagement, team proactivity composition and perceived organizational support. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 101, 90-103.