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10 Great Books About Industrial-Organizational Psychology

industrial organizational psychology books

Ten Best Industrial-Organizational Psychology Books

  • Applied Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology
  • Industrial/Organizational Psychology: Understanding the Workplace
  • Work in the 21st Century
  • Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Research and Practice

Industrial-organizational psychology is a field of business management that draws on concepts from human resources, psychology, philosophy and business analytics. With a degree in I/O psychology, you can help working professionals develop their career potential or pursue your own career in human resources management at the company of your choice. The following books can help you master the fascinating subject of industrial-organizational psychology.

See our ranking of the 10 Most Affordable Top-Ranked Master’s in Industrial-Organizational Psychology

1. Applied Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Applied Industrial/Organizational Psychology is one of the top books in this fascinating field of research. It presents a thorough introduction to students of the subject of I/O psychology by explaining the theory, data and application of important concepts. Anyone studying I/O psychology should start with this book or add it to their list of important works to read on the subject. It’s detailed enough for experienced students to learn from while also providing easily accessible expert insight that beginners can understand.

2. Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, industrial-organizational psychologists earn a median annual salary of around $87,000, with the highest-earning 10 percent receiving around $184,000 or more per year. Introduction to Industrial/Organizational Psychology aims to help professional I/O psychologists speed up the process of advancing their careers and becoming experts in their field. It includes many real-world examples of using I/O psychology techniques to improve the workplace and help a company’s employees reach their full potential.

3. Industrial/Organizational Psychology: Understanding the Workplace

Industrial/Organizational Psychology: Understanding the Workplace is one of the most widely read textbooks in the field of I/O psychology. It covers the theory and application of concepts that have guided the professional progress of I/O psychologists for most of a century, and students of all backgrounds can easily grasp its concepts in detail without additional resources. It’s written by Paul Levy, an I/O psychologist who has authored several important texts in this field.

4. Work in the 21st Century

Work in the 21st Century is a comprehensive text that students of I/O psychology can use to develop a mastery of their subject. The field of I/O psychology has been practiced since the 1930s, and social scientists have developed theories and practices for the workplace over the decades. Work in the 21st Century presents these ideas in clear, easy-to-understand language for students of all backgrounds.

5. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Research and Practice

Jobs in I/O psychology are expected to increase more quickly than average over the coming years, according to the BLS. I/O psychologists have many attractive options to choose from when it comes to practicing and researching this highly specialized subject. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Research and Practice can quickly bring anyone up-to-speed on the terminology, concept, and techniques used in I/O psychology.

6. Constructing Organizational Life

Published in August 2019 by the Oxford University Press, Constructing Organizational Life is a 400-page, enlightening book that examines how people shape institutions. It was written by two of London’s leading business professors, Drs. Thomas B. Lawrence and Nelson Phillips, with nearly 750 well-sourced citations. Constructing Organizational Life breaks down complex I/O psychology research to discover how societal norms impact workplaces. The reference book poses a unique social-symbolic perspective to understand work environments. Its pages trace historical shifts in modern workplaces since the early 20th century to show how humans have constructed their organizational life.

7. The Non-Obvious Guide to Employee Engagement

Authored by Maddie Grant and Jamie Notter, The Non-Obvious Guide to Employee Engagement is one of the shortest, yet most practical industrial-organizational psychology books. The 125-page book printed in January 2019 recommends ways for I/O psychologists to positively change disengaged workforces. Proven, actionable tips for organizations to connect with employees are outlined. It’s the third installment of The Non-Obvious Guide series. Unlike older I/O psychology books, it focuses an entire chapter on reaching out to and retaining millennials. Grant and Notter also suggest cutting-edge ways to measure employee engagement better than surveys.

8. The Best Place to Work

Given the Inc. Best Business Book of the Year Award, The Best Place to Work: The Art and Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace is a highly recommended read for I/O psychologists. Published in 2014, this 352-page book by ignite80 founder Dr. Ron Friedman explores how companies build successful work environments. Friedman utilizes industrial-organizational psychology research to reveal how managers can promote better work performance. Each chapter doles out research-backed advice on how to improve work culture, creativity, employee motivation, team collaboration, and more. I/O psychologists will benefit from the real-world stories of leaders boosting productivity.

9. Organizational Behavior: A Skill-Building Approach

Released in 2nd Edition format in January 2019, Organizational Behavior: A Skill-Building Approach is one of the leading industrial-organizational psychology books focused on unleashing full employee potential. One author, Dr. Christopher Neck, is an Arizona State University scholar and Business Week Favorite Professor Award recipient. The other authors are Virginia Tech’s Dr. Jeffrey Houghton and University College Dublin’s Emma L. Murray. The writing trio produced a 568-page textbook with I/O psychology strategies to enhance work dynamics. Readers learn the organizational factors that affect workers’ ambition, job satisfaction, productivity, and office engagement. The updated volume features a user-friendly term glossary and visual charts to depict good work practices.

10. Corporate Psychopathy

Available on Amazon Kindle, Corporate Psychopathy: Investigating Destructive Personalities in the Workplace is an interesting I/O psychology book that centers on bad actors who ruin office environments. The 385-page digital guide was published by Palgrave Macmillan in December 2019 by Drs. Katarina Fritzon, Nathan Brooks, and Simon Croom. Corporate psychopaths are defined as leaders who hide behind charisma to manipulate and attack other colleagues. Corporate psychopaths take whatever means necessary to promote themselves with no guilt or empathy. I/O psychologists learn how to address their antisocial and predatory workplace behaviors. Corporate Psychopathy utilizes emerging personality research and real-life examples to paint the picture of psychopathic executives.

These books provide an excellent foundation of knowledge in the subject of I/O psychology while helping students develop useful skills for the workplace. Studying industrial-organizational psychology can improve your employment prospects and increase your earning potential.

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