Space to Think

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Valuing Psychological Capital

I am not much given to framing human and social factors in the monetary metaphor as forms of capital, but  let’s accept that it has become a way that important ideas are being communicated.

Positive Psychology News Daily has an interesting review article on “Psychological Capital” (Psycap):

Psychological Capital (Oxford University Press, 2007), by Fred Luthans, Carolyn M. Youssef, and Bruce J. Avolio, introduces both a significant stream of research and an important framework for the application of positive psychology to organizations. The stream of research involves a construct they call “PsyCap” — a composite construct made up of self-efficacy, hope, optimism, and resiliency.

And more recently, the Gallup Management Journal has linked this work to business. As Skip Reardon comments over at Be Excellent,

It’s this new focus on “human factors” that will revolutionize the business excellence industry.

Key questions that indicate our psychological capital might include:

  • How well do I think I will be able to meet a future challenge?
  • What sense do I have of goals and the means to attain them?
  • How positively do I respond to and interpret set-backs?
  • When beset by problems and adversity, how well do I keep going and bounce back to attain success?

We need to explore further how to recognise, reinforce and stimulate such “psychological capital” in our selves, colleagues and organisations if we are concerned to shape and contribute to the future and not be simply fatalistic or victimised in the face of change and possibility.

April 22, 2008 Posted by | organisations, psychology | , , , , | 2 Comments