Student guide Faculty of Economics A.Y. 2008/09

Business Psychosociology
Theoretical models
Examples and real-world cases illustrated by the lecturers.
Audio-visual materials (use of the cinema as a tool for building perception skills and for theory validation).
Application to personal experience, individually and in workshops.
Aim of the course
General principles
The course lays the foundations for understanding and managing the psychological dynamics of organisations, that is to say those aspects that escape conventional organisational and management rationales, but which are an essential ingredient for the success of individuals, groups and organisations.
Relational skills enable people to operate effectively within organisations, attaining their objectives and earning recognition for their merits and the technical abilities they acquire.
Developing these skills requires operating on two fronts, the individual and collective:
1.     Self-awareness, that is to say understanding the psychological components that make up the personality, and which influence life and work choices.
2.     A knowledge of group dynamics, i.e. a grasp of the rules and mechanisms implicit in the functioning of groups, and which constrain or facilitate the actions of individuals and of the group as a whole.
Consolidated psychological and social theories will be presented, alongside the most recent approaches, which take into account the rapid evolution of the economic system under the effects of globalisation and multiculturalism.
The most advanced western approaches and the cultural roots of eastern approaches will be explored, using cultural diversity as a tool for better understanding one's own culture.
Lessons on the theory will be alternated with practical tutorial sessions, exercises and application of the presented models to improve student's perception and awareness of their actions and choices in personal and working life.

Aim of the course
1.      Groundwork for understanding and managing the psychological and relational dynamics of organisations.
2.      Self-awareness in the professional and personal spheres (work-life balance).
3.      Fundamental decisions about one's professional and relational style.
Sociological dimension of corporate dynamics
·   The life cycle of purpose-specific groups: evolutionary stages, from formation to conclusion.
·   Needs of groups and individual needs, overcoming the Maslowian approach.
·   Social contracts and psychological contracts within a group. Transition from group to team.
·  Relationships within the group and their impact on life in the organisation: identifying modes of interaction and their impact on innovation, change, stability, creativity, forming and breaking of bonds, renewal.
·  Group syndromes, when working together engenders crises and risks.
·  Managing differences: organisational cultures and subcultures, instruments for cultural diagnosis. Integration, rejection and coexistence.
·   Classical approaches to diversity (the three reference schools).
·   Frontier approaches: lessons from the far eastern and far western cultures.
·  The Black Box hypothesis, as a quantum leap in the socio-psychological disciplines; its applications to changes within groups.
Psychological dimension of interpersonal relationships
·   Understanding oneself and understanding others: formation of the personality.
·   The ego states model in Transactional Analysis.
·   Multiplicity of personality styles.
·   Self-diagnosis tools: egogram.
·   Bases of insecurity and security in the relation with oneself and with others.
·  Is it possible to choose one's destiny? Role of individual choices and influence of the environment.
·   Constructing an individual Life Script, how it is formed,  how it is maintained, and how it can be changed.
·   Healthy conflicts and pathological conflicts, role of psychological games.
·   Assertiveness and intimacy.
·   Balance between personal time and work time.
There will be an oral examination.
Reading list
Attendance at lectures and personal note-taking are an essential part of the course (for individualising the learning experience).
Handouts containing additional material prepared by the lecturers, and excerpts from the course textbooks, will also be provided.
Students will complete their learning experience through personal introspection work, done using a self-development textbook.