Work is more than earning money, it is an opportunity to use skills and feel successful and effective. It also provides meaningful relationships with other people. Work is a vital part of a good and satisfying life (Scollon & King, 2004). The United States worker puts in more hours at work than anyone else in the world (King, 2013). According to the United Nations International Labor Organization, United States worker works more hours and is more productive, but not necessarily more efficient, than their European counter parts (King, 2013). Industrial Organizational Psychology (I/O psychology) applies the science of psychology to work and the workplace (King, 2013) to enhance worker efficiency and productivity.
Researchers in the field of I/O psychology looked to find a broad range of topics related to the work environment including; job placement, influences of attitudes on job performance, understanding the ways people work in groups (King, 2013). These topics are also the subject of the psychological research, such as, cognition, personality, motivation, emotion, and social psychology (King, 2013). I/O psychology is unique because it tests theories of basic research and applies it to the workplace. There are three important influences of I/O psychology; scientific management, ergonomics, and the human relations approach to management. The early influence of I/O psychology has improved America’s work environments since the 1800s (Meacham, 2012).
Industrial and Organizational Psychology is a new idea, applied less than 100 years ago. In that time, many people within the field of had backgrounds in engineering, and some had background in history and law (Spector, 2008). The roots of industrial and organizational psychology began during the two world wars. During the wars psychologists helped to address crucial military concerns like, recruitment, selection, and morale (King, 2013). During the First World War the United Stated was in need of a program for psychological evaluation of recruits’ for specific jobs within the military during the war. One psychologist who stepped up was Robert Yerkes, a psychologist who worked within the military using a mental ability test for their recruitment (Meacham, 2012).
Koppes (2007) believed that Yerkes had “paved the way to large-scale intelligence testing and for later expansion of psychological testing in government, industry, and education (p. 315). It was during America world wars that industrial and organizational psychology quickly developed in other sectors of organizations (Meacham, 2012). The Industrial part of I/O psychology was first applied while organizational followed. The industrial side focused on understanding human behavior to improve organizational efficiency, employee choice, employee training and the efficiency of the jobs. The organizational aspect focuses on understanding behavior to enhance employee satisfaction and well-being within the work...