Industrial / Organizational psychology and consumer behavior 2

[4 abstracts]

1. Application of Winter's scoring system for measuring unconscious motives  [presentation, pdf, 776 kB]
Boštjančič E.
Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia

The purpose of the research was to get know Winter’s scoring method and analyze it results for recognition and evaluation of unconscious motives (of power, socialization, accomplishments, and moral responsibility) in the running text. This method was relatively unknown in Slovenia. The present randomized research included 60 executives employed in Slovenian and international companies with headquarters in Slovenia. We conducted a one hour structured interview with each individual. Winter’s motive scoring system for coding power, affiliation and achievement motives and expressions of responsibility was used to analyse the interviews. The evaluation method proved not to be sufficiently reliable; however, it has on the other hand opened new possibilities of qualitative measurement in the future. The results show that the achievement and power motivation are prevailing in entrepreneurs, whereas in managers the leader motive profile is more often (33%) noticed. An interesting finding is also that leader’s non-conscious need for power is in positive correlation with subordinate’s commitment, satisfaction and motivation.

2. Perception of gender differences in competition in organizations  
Fülöp M., Sebestyén N.
First author's affiliation: Institute for Psychology, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary

Competition is an everyday context of the business life in a market economy. Most of the psychological results (developmental, social, personality) showed that males are more competitive than females. However, recent studies call the attention to an equally intensive competitive drive among women. Our study aimed at revealing if there are gender differences in terms of adapting and coping with a highly competitive environment, namely the business context. In order to examine this altogether 202 in-depth interviews were carried out with 50 business leaders from the capital of Hungary, Budapest and 152 from other cities of the country, 33% of them were females and 67% of them males. The age range was 23 to 60. The first part of the in depth-interviews aimed at revealing the personal attitude towards competition, winning and losing. The second half asked the respondents about the role they attribute to competition in the economic life in general, and in the Hungarian market specifically, and finally we asked the respondents to describe their views on gender differences (if any) in relations to competition in the business life, in the organizational realm. The approximately 70 minutes long interviews were transcribed and content analyzed and qualitatively different categories set up. The qualitative analysis was followed by a quantitative statistical analysis. This revealed – among others - an intensively negative view of female competition in organizations, and this negative view was shared both by our male and female respondents. Female-female competition was described in an especially negative way.

3. Risk-perception and risk-evaluation in the no-data-decision-making-situations  [presentation, ppt, 285 kB]
Fenzl T., Brudermann T.
First author's affiliation: Institute of Psychology, Department for Economic Psychology, Klagenfurt, Austria

In situations of uncertainty, for which people do not have any experiences, they seek for information in their environment, on which they can base their expectations. The concept of other-directedness (Riesman, 1952) implies that there are numerous situations in which people do not solely base their decisions on facts but rather react to the behavior of others. Evidence can be found by creating uncertainty or disorientation, panic or euphoria and by providing an environment that suggests explanations (Schachter & Singer 1962). To investigate the effects of other peoples´ behavior on perception and evaluation of risk our experimental design registered the risk-behavior of students in an oral exam under particular conditions. As a novelty we offered participants (n=59) to choose between an examiner, who is generally known at campus for risky and unpredictable exams, and an examiner who never took exams before. Our objective was to observe the different behavioral strategies in order to manage this situation. We focused on whether participants would perceive and evaluate risk using the behavior of other students passing the exam before them and to which degree a suspected bad performance of the first few candidates would influence their behavior. In this risky situation, where information is lacking and can´t be acquired from the environment, the majority of students rather chose the known evil than going for the completely unfamiliar alternative. Nevertheless one third of the students trusted in their abilities or the subjective appraisal of their skills and opted for the unfamiliar examiner. Faced with the bad outcome of the first few candidates taking the exam with him, a majority of the remaining participants that had originally chosen this alternative were rethinking their decisions, using the outcomes of these others to evaluate the risk faced anew, and 17% reversed their choice. Therefore the behavior and actions of other people in the environment plays an important role in perceiving and evaluating risk.

4. Evaluation of workplace health promotion – how to counteract the well-known difficulties  [presentation, pdf, 990 kB]
Brunner E., Kada O., Jenull B.
First author's affiliation: Carinthia University of Applied Sciences (CUAS), Feldkirchen, Austria

Although there’s no doubt about the effectiveness of workplace health promotion (WHP) there are several well-known problems to be taken into account when evaluating WHP: The effectiveness of WHP is not precisely attributable to certain interventions (Lenhardt, 2005), the levels of evidence from evidence-based medicine are only in parts applicable (Bödeker, 2007), the generalisation of the results to other contexts is limited (Slesina, 2008), and the evaluation of lasting effects of WHP can only be captured using costly and time-consuming concepts and is thus hardly realized. A promising approach to overcome these difficulties is introduced on the basis of a WHP project implemented in a Carinthian hospital. The project uses health circles, an open space, and an employee survey for the as-is analysis which is the basis for the development of interventions. The project is accompanied by advisory board meetings. All interventions and the meetings of the advisory board are evaluated using adequate designs and methods: For example, the smoking intervention is evaluated using a pre-post control group design (summative evaluation); qualitative content analysis of the meeting protocols is used to evaluate and simultaneously improve the meetings of the advisory board in the sense of formative evaluation. Hence, based on the state of the art the present evaluation concept comprises multiple perspectives, qualitative and quantitative methods, is flexibly tailored to the particular interventions and combines different levels of evidence. It can be recommended that evaluation should be part of a WHP project from the very beginning so that formative and summative evaluation can be integrated. Regarding every single intervention the best applicable level of evidence should be realised and adequate methods for each research subject should be employed. In a successful WHP project the costs associated with evaluation must be precisely budgeted.