Welcome to The Human Factor!

Welcome to the The Human Factor!

We are very excited about our new publication and to be sharing our first blog posts this week. Our aim is to post a variety of stories each week in the areas of occupational psychology team research and practice. We are passionate about cultivating effective and healthy team environments and are currently completing research projects with teams.

We have created The Human Factor publication as a platform to share our ideas, insights and learning from occupational psychology research alongside our own research projects. We welcome discussion and hope to include more articles from a range of writers in the coming months with a special focus on work teams. Below we have summarised a little bit about who we are, our experiences and interests.

If you would like to be involved in our team research projects, we have also provided some information about how you can do this at the bottom of the article.

Kay Galpin (Editor)

I’ve been working in private and third sector organisations for 20 years as a generalist HR business partner and as a learning and development specialist. A large part of that time has been spent coaching line managers and individuals about how to manage relationships, build leadership, engage people, develop individuals and design and build teams that deliver, both at an organisational and personal level. My own philosophy has developed over that time and I would summarise it as being interested in how people come together to create something that is amazing, be that a product, an idea or a service. Seeing people collaborating and learning in a way that enhances both their productivity and well being is both inspiring and contagious, and seeing how this can transform workplaces is fascinating. Putting your finger on what that actually is, is the challenge and I’m hoping that my research will reveal some more nuances of that question! I would consider myself to be a pragmatist,( in extremis sometimes!) and am interested in how research and organisational evidence can come together to open new avenues for debate and application in workplaces, with the aim of making them more fulfilling and interesting places.

Helen Brown (Editor)

Before I began training in occupational psychology, I worked in a range of mental health and research settings. For several years I worked in primary care services as a psychological therapist, and completed postgraduate qualifications in cognitive behavioural and relational therapy. Following this I worked in wellbeing measurement and analysis for a wellbeing charity in Bristol. I have also worked in NHS clinical trials, HMP service Psychology Department and Victim Support. Throughout these experiences I learned a great deal about the psychology of work, and was inspired by each of these organisations in different ways. I discovered my passion was to understand how teams and organisations can be places where people can be themselves and where work is a source of hope, purpose and enjoyment. My experiences as a therapist taught me the value of individual stories, and storytelling in organisations is one of my primary research interests. I believe in the transformational power of stories in organisations, and the value of self-generating change processes advocated by more dialogic organisational development models. I have been fortunate to be a part of some wonderful teams throughout my working life, and am interested in how to cultivate effective team dynamics in complex and diverse environments to allow individuals, teams and organisations to flourish. Specifically, my current research is exploring the impact of emotional diversity of teams on collaborative stories. I am passionate about applying psychological research to practice, and learning from others in the field to create working environments that are ever-learning, prioritise staff wellbeing, and embrace diversity.

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