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Organizational Newcomers: Conflict Can Lead to Worse Performance

Organizational newcomers are those employees who are “just off the boat” and are still trying to figure out how work is done at their new organization. Sure, HR-led orientations may be useful for some things, but there are certainly job-related specifics that require more detailed information from people already doing the job. A newcomer’s ability to acquire this information may be the difference between good and bad job performance. New research (Nifadkar & Bauer, 2015) helps us understand what can go wrong in this process.

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Abusive Supervision may have Roots in Childhood

Abusive Supervision may have Roots in Childhood

Supervisor anger is a common workplace problem. This can include a supervisor who is angered too easily or a situation when the supervisor’s anger is disproportional to the situation at hand. This study explores the true reasons behind this anger, hypothesizing that a history of family aggression is the root of angry reactions and abusive supervision.

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The Downside to Monitoring Web-based Trainings

There is a real, measurable downside to monitoring web-based trainings. E-learners who are having their performance monitored become goal oriented in a way that affects their level of apprehension. That apprehension, in turn, affects their ability to acquire new skills, according to a study by Watson, Thompson, Rudolph, Whelan, Behrend, and Gissel.

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Practice makes perfect: The harder you practice, the better you play

Let’s imagine that you are learning a new skill, and in honor of the end of summer, let’s say that skill is sunbathing. Assuming that you want to be an expert sunbather, your path to greatness will depend on the type of practice that you do. If you spend 15 minutes by the pool with heavy cloud coverage, your practice intensity would not be as high as someone baking for six hours under direct sunlight during a day that is nearly 100 degrees. Which person, the former or the latter, will be Mr. or Mrs. Hawaiian Tropic? If you said the latter, as in the person who puts in six hours of intense and difficult practice, then you’d be correct. This observation – that the intensity and difficulty of practice relate to performance – was empirically supported by a study by researchers from the University of Oklahoma, though their subjects were learning how to play a video game instead of sunbathing.

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How to Become Indispensable

If you’re early in your career and anything like me, you’re probably eager for advancement and seeking opportunities to gain experience with and proficiency in your intended line of work. Or, for those of you who are seasoned professionals, you may be wondering how you can become indispensable in your company or an expert in your field.

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Does Asking For Help Lead to High Performance? (IO Psychology)

Topic: Learning, Personality, Job Performance
Publication: Journal of Applied Psychology (MAR 2012)
Article: The Impact of Help Seeking on Individual Task Performance: The Moderating Effect of Help Seekers’ Logics of Action
Authors: D. Geller, P.A. Bamberger
Reviewed By: Ben Sher

Help, I need somebody! When employees get stuck trying to complete a task, asking for help seems to be the surest way to solve the problem. But does asking for help lead to better job performance? According to Geller and Bamberger (2012), the answer is that it depends on who you are and why you are asking for help in the first place.

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Do you learn more if you trust your mentor? (IO Psychology)

Topic: Mentoring, Learning
Publication: Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies (AUG 2011)
Article: Trust as a moderator of the relationship between mentoring and knowledge transfer
Authors: Fleig-Palmer, M. M., & Schoorman, F. D.
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

Mentoring is widely considered to be an effective way of transferring knowledge and skills, but is it really effective? And does the protégé’s trust in the mentor affect how much the protégé learns? Fleig-Palmer and Schoorman (2011) conducted a survey in a health care organization to answer these questions.

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Increasing Training Transfer (I/O Psychology)

Topic: Training, Learning, Motivation
Publication: Journal of Business and Psychology EC 2011)
Article: Influencing learning states to enhance trainee motivation and improve training transfer
Authors: Weissbein, D. A., Huang, J. L., Ford, J. K., & Schmidt, A. M.
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

How many times have you heard about or participated in a training program but the information or skills learned didn’t get retained or used after the training ended? This transfer of training problem is common and frustrating to those who develop or pay for training programs.

In this paper, Weissbein, Huang, Ford, and Schmidt (2011) conducted a study in which they gave undergraduates a pretraining intervention before the participants received interpersonal negotiation training.

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Learning to learn: aim high and believe in yourself!

Topic: Training, Goals, Learning
Publication: Psychological Bulletin (MAR 2011)
Article: A meta-analysis of self-regulated learning in work-related training and educational attainment: What we know and where we need to go
Authors: T. Sitzmann, K. Ely
Reviewed by: Alexandra Rechlin

When people self-regulate, they monitor their emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in order to obtain some sort of goal. Self-regulated learning refers to when people attempt to monitor and control their emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in order to attain a learning or achievement outcome. The authors of this article reviewed numerous theories of self-regulated learning and conducted a meta-analysis to better understand the extent to which self-regulated learning processes affect learning.

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