Leadership – The Psychological Contract At Work

Work – Psychological contract

Leadership – The Psychological Contract At Work

This post discusses the theory of psychological contracts in the workplace and in the wider world outside work.

‘The Psychological Contract’ is increasingly relevant in workplace relationships.

The idea of Psychological Contract first emerged in the 1960s and it was widely discussed, particularly in the work of organizational and behavioral theorists Chris Argyris and Edgar Schein.

Many other experts have contributed ideas on the subject since then, and they continue to do so, either specifically focusing on the Psychological Contract, or approaching it from a particular or new perspective.   The Psychological Contract means many things to different people – it is open to a range of interpretations and theoretical studies.

Usually, the Psychological Contract refers to the relationship between an employer and their employees, and it relates to their concerns and their mutual expectations of that relationship, in terms of what each will put in and receive.

The Psychological Contract is usually seen from the standpoint or expectations of employees, although to understand it properly means you need to see it from both sides.

At its simplest, at work, the Psychological Contract is about fairness or balance. What can reasonably be expected! How will the employee be treated by the employer?  What will the employee put into the job? What will be the reward?

The closer you look at the real nature of the contract in any particular organization, the more complicated it becomes; there will be  unwritten “rules” and “expectations” on both sides.

The whole thing becomes more complicated when the organization is in change or when the outside environment intrudes – such as in times of recession when the employer’s ability to reward may be limited.

Of course, the theory and principles of the Psychological Contract can also be applied beyond the employment situation to human relationships, wider society and certainly in the world of politics between leaders and those led.

The concept of the Psychological Contract is still continuing to develop and it certainly is not recognized in all organizations.  It is even less well understood in the world outside work.

But respect, compassion, trust, empathy, fairness and objectivity – qualities that characterize the Psychological Contract, are worth the regard and respect of all of us, inside work and out.

contract

Managing diverse teams

Managing diverse teams

Managing divers teams – I believe that diverse teams are powerful when well managed provide. They provide individual team members with an energising and exciting place to work. Here are some tips on managing diverse teams.

Recognize that people come with different needs. People are different for all kinds of reasons; age, sex or ethnic background being just the start.  But don’t assume that just because they are old/young, male/female, black/white etc that they will be different. Get to know your people and find out exactly what each one need from you to succeed.

Recognize and give credit for wisdom.  People bring a variety od learning and experience.  All will bring something – for example, school-leavers may well be able to tell you about new trends.  Take time to find out what each person brings to the party and be grateful for it.

Stand your ground, but do so with respect for difference.  If you are the leader and accountable for results, do your job. People will be looking for you to lead and they can, quite rightfully, feel resentful if you leave them lost and without leadership.  But lead with respect for all.

Be ready to learn from them. Be honest when you don’t know how to do something.  If someone does have the answer, be humble enough to let them show you. It’s okay that you have some things to learn. We all do! You will be respected for your honesty.

Don’t avoid issues or fail to handle conflict. Don’t be tempted to make  excuses for not knowing something, pretend you have more experience than members of your team. Don’t duck issues that arise between team members.  Unresolved conflicts fester. Deal quickly with any indication of bullying.

Be honest with people. People value honesty expressed with  care and courtesy.  Treat them as you would like to be treated.

Practice patience.  People may be more or less culturally, technologically, or trend, savvy.  That doesn’t mean they will not be valuable.  Take time to find out about them, then train where necessary. Different kinds of people may need different forms of communication or you may need to explain something in a different context.

Above all, enjoy the experience that working in a team with people from a mix of backgrounds brings. Their strengths will make for a powerful team

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

Leading people who are different from you!

Leading people who are different from you!

I started my professional career qualifying and working as a nurse.  I can’t remember that the differences between the people were an issue in that world.  It was later on, when I moved to work in a government department, that I had problems.  Or, rather, one particular problem!

I had a very junior member of the team who was very much older than me.  She found it difficult to accept my right to lead and manage her; she preferred working for men.  Eventually, and with a lot of work by both of us, we found a way of working together, but it was never easy.  Over the years, I learned a few lessons and got better at working with people who were very different, including of different ages.  Here, are some of the things I learned.

Recognize that people are different. People are different for all kinds of reasons; age, sex or ethnic background, being just the start.  But don’t assume that just because they are old/young, male/female, black/white etc that they will be different.  Get to know your people and find out exactly what it is they need from you to succeed.

Recognize and give credit for wisdom.  Different people bring different learning and experience.  But most will bring something – for example, school-leavers may well be able to tell you about new trends.  Find out what each person brings to the party and be grateful for it.

Stand your ground, but do it with respect for difference.  If you are the leader and accountable for results, do your job. People will be looking for you to lead and they can, quite rightfully, feel resentful if you leave them lost and without leadership.  But lead with respect for all.

Be ready to learn from them. Be honest when you don’t know how to do something.  If someone does have the answer, be humble enough to let them show you. It’s okay that you have some things to learn. We all do! You will be respected for your honesty.

Don’t avoid issues or fail to handle conflict. Don’t be tempted to make  excuses for not knowing something, pretend you have more experience than members of your team or duck issues that arise between team members.  Those who have the experience will see through that type behavior, you will lose their respect and unresolved conflicts fester.

Be honest with people. Most people in the world value honesty expressed with courtesy, regardless of their age, sex etc.  Treat them as you would like to be treated.

Practice patience.  People may be more or less culturally, technologically, or trend savvy.  That doesn’t mean they will not be valuable.  Take time to find out about them, then train where necessary. Different kinds of people may need different forms of communication or you may need to explain something in a different context.

Above all, enjoy the experience that working in a team with people from a mix of backgrounds brings.

Wendy Mason is a career coach.  She helps people reach their goals and aspirations, without sacrificing their home and personal life.  Before working as a coach, Wendy had a long career in both the public and private sectors in general management and consultancy as well as spells in HR.  She now divides her time between coaching and writing. You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com and find out more athttp://wisewolfcoaching.com

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Steve Jobs – Quotes On Success and Creativity

Steve Jobs – Quotes On Success and Creativity

Steve Jobs remains our hero.

Kick-start your brain. New ideas come from watching something, talk to people, Steve Jobsexperimenting, asking questions and getting out of the office!

Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

The people who are doing the work are the moving force behind the Macintosh. My job is to create a space for them, to clear out the rest of the organization and keep it at bay.

Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do the market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.

It’s only by saying ‘no’ that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.

That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.

It took us three years to build the NeXT computer. If we’d given customers what they said they wanted, we’d have built a computer they’d have been happy with a year after we spoke to them – not something they’d want now.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design IS how it works.

Your customers dream of a happier and better life. Don’t move products. Enrich lives.

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules…because the ones how are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Wendy Smith, Career, life and Business Coach
Wendy Smith, Principal Coach, WiseWolf Life and Career Coaching

Wendy Smith is a career consultant, life coach and business coach with depth of experience in organisational development, management, coaching and personal development. That experience means she is equally at home helping clients find a new career direction, starting-up new businesses or dealing with life’s more challenging personal issues. You can contact her at wendy@wisewolfcoaching.com

Wendy has written a little eBook on how to get on with your boss and a book on job search – you can find all her books on Amazon at this link

         

Tuesday Quotes For Management – Steve Jobs On Success and Creativity

Tuesday Quotes For Management – Steve Jobs On Success and Creativity

Kick-start your brain. New ideas come from watching something, talk to people, experimenting, asking questions and getting out of the office!

Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.

You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.

The people who are doing the work are the moving force behind the Macintosh. My job is to create a space for them, to clear out the rest of the organization and keep it at bay.

Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.

We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build the Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do the market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.

It’s only by saying ‘no’ that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.

That’s been one of my mantras – focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.

It took us three years to build the NeXT computer. If we’d given customers what they said they wanted, we’d have built a computer they’d have been happy with a year after we spoke to them – not something they’d want now.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design IS how it works.

Your customers dream of a happier and better life. Don’t move products. Enrich lives.

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently – they’re not fond of rules…because the ones how are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Wendy Mason is a career coach.  She helps people reach their goals and aspirations, without sacrificing their home and personal life.  Before working as a coach, Wendy had a long career in both the public and private sectors in general management and consultancy as well as spells in HR.  She now divides her time between coaching and writing. You can contact Wendy at wendymason@wisewolfcoaching.com and find out more athttp://wisewolfcoaching.com