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Influences On Organisational Behaviour

I’ve been studying psychology for what feels like my whole life, and have watched communities of people on farms on international major projects and in large multi-national organisations and in different countries.

I undertook to identify what psychological constructs were influencing behaviour. I knew that my own behaviour was determined by a variation of inherited and learnt behaviours, and deeper psychological constructs like the tensions between my ego states, my value-based make-up, interesting internalised social paradigms, my culture and community, development and growth, and the environment in which to enact all of my knowing and sensing in my personality. 

The purpose of watching all of this internal and external dynamics was to understand more about human nature in order to understand how individuals can reclaim their life, and organisations can facilitate individuals so that we can all grow. Identification of these variables means that I am a little closer to understanding what can both influence and constrain my behaviour, and what is aligned and not. Any misalignment can cause me to experience negative emotions, and although my belief is that we need to have lows to experience highs, there are some things in organisations that we have a little more control over, and don’t have to create organisations to exist that are outside of our natural state of functioning. I understand now that through the pandemic there are lots of people that may notice or have said that society may need a different conceptualisation of life so that we don’t bring some of our fears about too soon (more viral spread, climate destruction, disease, poverty, you name it…). I find that with more awareness and consideration individuals, organisations and society in general can begin to live more healthily.

Some of the influences on behaviour that I identify are: 

  1. National Culture or community in which you grew up in including the norms of behaving, traditions, sign and symbols, or artifacts, leaders and values.
  2. Institution & Organisational Logics – the formal and informal norms of behaving in the organisation, including its culture or temperature, and any legal or shareholder or client requirements that involve more focus.
  3. The level of education of individuals, as well as anything that can be used to develop and influence behaviour within organisations like training, interventions, and communication. 
  4. Risk Perception and Motivation
  5. Society & Technology

Leadership is located within all variables.

When looking at behaviour in organisations, there are some considerations you may want to think about which can help determine how closely the organisation is to individuals’ natural state of being. The assumption is that if individuals are allowed to function wholly and in alignment with their needs and values and purpose they will most likely perform far better than people who feel constrained. 

Question the following about the influences on behaviour:

  1. Is there evidence that all of the policies and systems have a design for the ease of the end-user or employee in mind?
  2. How much consideration of individual or national cultural preference (like decision-making style, communication style, and networks of people) is made during the planning stage?
  3. Do people in the organisation (from senior leadership to reception clerks) know how to care for themselves and others?
  4. What are some of the assumptions of individuals around their perception of the organisation, and what are they motivated to achieve?

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