The formation of the psychology of business as a direction...

Formation of the psychology of business as a direction in psychology

Psychology of business as a direction in psychology was formed over a long period, which was due to the development of psychological science, the formation of empirical and practical psychology, and the development of business itself as a complex social and economic reality of society.

In the literature there are different names for this new direction, which, in fact, mean very close concepts: "business psychology" (Emelyanov, Povarnitsyna, 1998; Ivanova, Mikhailova, Shtroo, 2008) and "business psychology"; (Bardier, 2002). In foreign psychology, a wider range of concepts is used: psychology of business, business psychology, psychology in business, psychology and business, etc. The existing variety of concepts confirms that this direction of psychological science is at the stage of its design and therefore has not yet been established in any one adopted version. Summarizing different points of view, we can say that business psychology is formed as a practical field of economic and social psychology.

In the world practice, the formation of a scientific and practical school of business psychology refers to the experience, mainly, of universities and professional organizations of Great Britain. In this country, a textbook on business psychology was published, which survived three editions (McKenna, 2000).

It should be noted that according to the established logic of the development of applied areas of psychology, the tradition of training precisely business psychologists has been formed in the UK (unlike, for example, from the USA where programs of Organizational Psychology, Occupational Psychology, etc. are for specialists of this profile. ).

The popularity of business psychologists in the UK has led to the creation of several associations of these professionals, the main of which are the Association of Business Psychologists and the Forum for Business and Consumers Psychology. The main world center for training business psychologists is London. It is in this scientific, financial and industrial center of the world that business psychologists are trained in several universities: University College London, London Metropolitan University, Westminster University, Kingston University, City University London, etc.

In addition, a number of universities in the UK work programs training business psychologists. It should be noted that the number of these programs is constantly growing. At the same time, there is a specialization within programs, for example, a division into programs on business psychology (Business Psychology) and consumer psychology (Consumer Psychology). It is significant that the history of the appearance of these programs and their further development testify to the interdisciplinary nature of this direction. As a rule, the programs were opened by people who have training in the field of both psychology and business. Moreover, some programs on business psychology were opened initially in the mainstream of business schools.

Case Studies

The Undergraduate Business Bachelor program at Birmingham City University is based on two faculties: a business school and a psychological faculty. One of the creators of this program, Professor Martin L. Boles (Martin L. Bowles) believes that the emergence of this program is a manifestation of postmodernism in psychology.

Training is conducted on psychology and the basics of the economy. The program includes 24 subjects: 12 subjects are related to the fundamentals of the economy (advertising, finance, economics, management, etc.); 12 - with the basics of psychology (general, social, personality psychology, counseling, etc.). The first year of training is conducted at the Faculty of Psychology. The basic concept is to train business psychologists - specialists who, knowing psychology and understanding the basics of business, can help businessmen not to lose their human face, be able to personal growth and normal communication with people, increase their efficiency and competitiveness. The main problem of training: a complex professional position of business psychology. People in business with psychological training can be more effective in managing themselves, organizing, developing communication, image. They have more opportunities to understand the life of the organization and develop effective relationships inside and outside the organization.

Forms of educational work are traditional for modern universities: lectures, seminars, preparation of essays, work on projects. But a variety of other approaches and methods of teaching are used: situation analysis (situational approach), comparative studies, group research (quantitative analysis), case studies (qualitative analysis), metaphors, stories (metaphors, stories, for example, a businessman is a lion ), digital performance (the method of preparing films and TV shows), self-presentation, etc. The main thing is to prepare specialists for both research and practical work (the second is given preference).

In London, the London Metropolitan University and Westminster University were among the first to open business training programs for business psychologists at the Master's level (Postgraduate programs, Masters programs) in London. But today such programs and courses are also available at other universities in London, such as the University of East London, the University of London, Kingston University, etc. They are also open in other cities, for example, Bangor University, New Castle University, etc. Master's Program "Business Psychology"; MSc. London Metropolitan University has been working since 2004.

The goal of the training is to develop the thinking and practical skills of psychologists relevant for working with businessmen, to teach psychologists to talk with businessmen, to be clear to them, to form a system of human values ​​among students, to develop skills of interaction, self-presentation.

The students' environment is not only graduates of psychology departments, but also representatives of business, committees for employment in companies, enterprises, employees of financial and other professional groups.

The program is aimed at ensuring that students can apply theoretical approaches and psychological knowledge in the work of the organization. This will help future specialists improve the efficiency and competitiveness of the business.

The main content of the program includes courses and master classes in psychology. A significant place is given to understanding business and its role in society, as well as the overall development of students. There is a formation of both knowledge and skills necessary for working in business, which students must demonstrate in the course of classes.

Forms of classes: traditional lectures, practical exercises, independent research, projects related to organizations. Here is an example of the structure of the course, which was implemented in 2009-2012.

Module 1. Psychology for Business Success. It includes such topics as motivation of business activity, the role of psychology in managing and developing business; counseling and coaching as methods of personal development for success in business, etc.

Module 2. Organizational Learning, Innovation and Creativity: learning at the individual, group and organizational levels that can lead to innovation.

Module 3. Selection and development of staff for business success: analysis of elements of successful business behavior and selection, evaluation and development procedures staff.

Module 4. Organizational Culture and Change: anthropological and psychological analysis of the organization. Metaphors of culture, Freud's theory for understanding how individuals gain experience in groups and organizations. Module 5. Decision Making, Leadership and Motivation: the nature of management decisions, the relationship between governance and leadership, leadership styles, the relationship with conditions and motivation.

Module 6. Research Methods and Consultancy Skills: development of skills and various research methods, data collection and processing, mini-projects and specific organizational tasks , negotiation and consultation skills.

Module summer (four months) - Project (Business Psychology Project): an independent study in the organizational case. When evaluating works (projects, reports, essays, dissertations) students take into account academic and practical criteria. Traditional tests and examinations are not conducted.

Graduates of the program work in the management of personnel of business organizations, marketing departments, advertising agencies, etc. In addition, they create their own business. Close on the content is a training program for business psychologists at the University of Westminster in London (University of Westminster).

A variety of career graduates of similar programs are evidenced by the biographies of representatives of the British Business Psychology Association, which can be found on the site (

In our country, the training of business psychologists is conducted at the Psychology Department of the National Research University - Higher school Economics ( Program "Psychology in business"; It is aimed at training psychologists for working in business organizations, i.e. companies, firms and other institutions aimed at producing goods and services, making a profit. In the world practice, such specialists were called business psychologists. Students learn to analyze business as an organization, activity and social institution, its impact on the social and professional development of the individual; study the principles and technologies of psychological support of business organizations, individual and group counseling, and the organization of in-house training. The main subject area of ​​theoretical and practical training is related to the psychology of business - the modern branch of psychology that emerged at the intersection of organizational, social psychology, labor and personality psychology, as well as sociology, management and economics. Much attention is paid to the problems of economic psychology, related to the study of the economic consciousness of the individual and society, the psychology of entrepreneurship and consumer behavior.

The research work of students is built around a permanent methodological seminar as a form of discussion of scientific plans and ideas, the specifics of applying counseling in working with businessmen, etc. The main directions of scientific research are determined by the current problems in the field of business psychology, economic and organizational psychology.

Graduates of the program occupy the positions of an advisory psychologist, an organizational development specialist, a human resources manager, a human resources director, a business trainer, a training manager, etc.

So, the psychology of business can be identified as a branch of psychology that studies business and is aimed at optimizing the relationship between business and society, as well as all stakeholders and assistance to business entities. The psychology of business is closely related to other sciences and psychological disciplines. We highlight the most significant of them: psychology of thinking, psychology of creativity, social psychology, personality psychology, management psychology, management, economic psychology, in particular business psychology, economics.

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