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Organizational Behavior Managment: A Glacial Phenomenon

After 30 years of applying behavioral principles and concepts to business and industry, I want to make some recommendations to anyone willing to listen. Granted, the origin of these suggestions is distributed between my personal experiences and information sharing with my colleagues and not “researched-based,” meaning I don’t have hard data to support some of my assertions. The comments made here are general in nature and I readily acknowledge there are some notable exceptions to them.

These observations directly relate to the rate that organizational behavior management (OBM) and behavior analysis are being assimilated into the cultural framework (operating beliefs, values, and assumptions) of our society. At this moment in history, I think the behavioral movement (OBM particularly) is only inching along, and popular books on rewards and recognition have managed to trivialize the notion of positive reinforcement. Recent books written on the subject, available at local bookstores, could be mistaken for texts written 25 years ago. It presents a well-known and ineffective methodology that is largely and deservedly ignored.

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Positive Feedback: Just the Facts

I have to admit that I am one of those people who becomes uncomfortable when someone says positive things about my work. Of course I do want to get feedback to know how I’ve done and I prefer positive feedback over the alternative. For me, I like to hear someone say something specific about the work rather than some comment about me.

For instance I prefer: “I really liked the idea you had for implementing OBM as a participative initiative rather than a management-driven process.”

This is not as good for me: “The idea for implementing OBM as a participative rather than a management-driven initiative was brilliant. You’re very creative.

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You May Be One Behavior Away from Profitability

What is a “behavior analyst?” You probably think you know; you don’t. Behavior analysts are psychologists who specialize in arranging (designing) environments to elicit useful, productive, value-added human behavior(s). Behavior analysts are experts in changing human behavior. When I use the word behavior, I am referring to something a human says (verbal behavior) or does (non-verbal, physical behavior), and behavior analysts work with fine grained, very specific behaviors when the situation requires them to do so.

In business and industry, behavior analysts help organizations improve human performance. The core purpose of quality initiatives and management development efforts is to change employee behaviors. U.S. corporations spend billions of dollars trying to encourage their employees to do things differently (change their behavior)—to come up with new ideas, work more safely, improve interpersonal effectiveness (talk to employees in a manner that encourages engagement and commitment to the companies performance goals), and do things to eliminate waste.

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All the Worlds a Stage: Part ll

What is in this article:

  • You do not have an accurate understanding of how you are perceived by others
  • Your verbal and non-verbal behaviors that have positive and negative effects on others have not been accurately pinpointed
  • No matter what interpersonal behaviors you want to start doing or stop doing, you cannot change those behaviors without going through 3 steps
  • Very few people ever change their personal style because they do not have access to these 3 steps

Part 1 of this blog was confrontational by design.I attempted to strip away the illusions and rationalizations that most people harbor about the way they are perceived by others—and why.One of the biggest problems in business and industry surrounds interpersonal style—how managers and supervisors are perceived by their subordinates.

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