An individual's working life undergoes the same intrapsychic conflicts as other aspects of experience. Yet, as a subject of psychoanalytic inquiry, the world of work has largely been ignored. In this innovative book, William M. Czander demonstrates that applying depth psychology to the organization and its employees provides a deeper understanding of the American workplace than traditional industrial psychology has offered. Using a psychoanalytic framework, Czander examines such issues as interactions between employees and management, the conscious and unconscious forces that bind fellow employees together, and the role of autonomy in people's lives. Most important, he details a means of intervention in the form of organizational consultation based on this more profound conceptualization of the dynamics of the workplace.
The first section of the book presents theoretical background, and the second applies theory to specific cases. Czander presents three major theories of psychoanalysis as they relate to work and the organization: Freudian and classical psychoanalytic theory, object relations theory, and self psychology theory. He explores how a psychoanalyst thinks about work and how work and the organization interact with the employees' unconscious motivations and ideation. He then applies these theories to actual case studies of organizational consultations. The consultation process is explained, including how a particular diagnosis and rationale for intervention is obtained. Czander concludes with a discussion of the practice of psychoanalytic consulting and its utility and relevance to the world of contemporary organizations.
Providing illuminating discussion on myriad issues related to the psychology of the workplace, this book is an ideal resource for a variety of mental health professionals: psychoanalysts especially interested in organizational consulting, organizational psychologists desiring a new perspective on their work, and clinicians from different disciplines whose clients are struggling with issues surrounding their work environments. It serves as an advanced text for courses in industrial organization, clinical and social work, and business management.
"Czander understands, as few psychologists do, that the modern organization rivals, even surpasses, the family as the primary source of deep psychological meaning in our lives." --Peter M. Newton, Ph.D., The Wright Institute "This is a superb and extremely timely text. It is well written and represents an original contribution to the literature on the application of psychodynamic thinking to organizational life and work and to understanding the complexity of organizational assessment and consultation. It will be indispensable to organizational consultants, students of psychoanalytic theory and to managers who 'think analytically.'
The first part of this book presents well-balanced, comprehensive contemporary integrations of Freud's classical psychoanalytic theory, object relations theories and self psychology theory. A major contribution to our dynamic understanding of work and organizational life.
This book is unique in that it describes in some detail the way in which one thinks about an organizational psychoanalytically--that is, how one tries to understand the organization in terms of themes and metaphors, what one looks for overtly and covertly, how one attempts to interpret these data and how one translates these understandings into interpretive interventions. In addition to an excellent summary of nine models of organizational consultation, Dr. Czander presents for the first time a detailed analysis and description of psychoanalytic consulting and the guideposts which define this model. One of the most creative features of this book is the application of this psychoanalytic model to organizational problems in the areas of task analysis, the exercise of authority, the taking of a role, inter-organizational subsystem relations, and the tensions between autonomous and dependent structures. Consultations to these problem areas are richly and clearly illustrated with selective case material.
This is clearly one of the most sophisticated texts in this area and belongs in the same league with the work of deBoard, Kets de Vries, Hirschhorn, and Rice." --Solomon Cytrynbaum, Ph.D., Northwestern University
"A comprehensive fundamental volume which gives structure to the whole field of consultation....Dr. Czander introduced the various important branches of psychoanalytic thinking, criticizes them, and then uses them as a basis for evaluating other kinds of consultation....This is a basic volume that will be a foundation for the profession for many years to come. The book is straightforward....The work is well researched and well referenced and covers the whole field....I wish I had written it myself...." --Harry Levinson, Ph.D., The Levinson Institute
"This is one of the better books on organizational psychodynamics from the perspective of someone interested in learning about this approach to the practice of organizational consultation. Graduate students will find it accessible and not excessively heavy-handed with psychoanalytic jargon." --Michael A. Diamond in Administrative Science Quarterly March 1996
"This thorough book is a definitive summary of psychoanalytic theories relevant to management and organizational consulting.... The Psychodynamics of Work and Organizations should be of use to psychoanalysts interested in management consulting as well as organizational consultants interested in psychoanalysis." --T.L. Brink, PhD, American Journal of Psychotherapy "This book is a thoroughly researched and fully detailed effort to apply psychoanalytic understanding to the work of individuals and organizations and it succeeds admirably...The first part is a rather thoroughgoing description of the three major psychoanalytic theories in generally lucid terms...The second part consists of excellent examples of a variety of problems encountered in consulting to organizations; this part includes discussion about how in a nondoctrinaire way aspects of these three theoretical psychoanalytic approaches can be used to get at the roots of the presenting problems, and Czander gives suggestions for the most suitable avenues for resolving them...It is difficult to convey in this space the intricate interweaving of psychoanalytic developmental knowledge, constructs from the three psychoanalytic theories, and the author's observations of workplace phenomena--internal and external--into a carefully delineated, vivid picture of the special approaches he uses. He brings a vast literature in all these areas to bear on his thesis. Throughout, his lucid writing includes little gems of examples that highlight his ideas, and for each of the areas of his functions I have described he provides a valuable case analysis...This is a valuable book...required reading to enlarge the understandings of advanced business students, managers, and CEO's on the complexity of organizational life and functioning." --"Contemporary Psychology"
"So, you think you're the only sane person in your office? This is the book for you. In addressing the importance of applying psychology to the organization and its employees, the author expands on the principles of traditional industrialpsychology. Theoretical background is discussed, from Freudian to self psychology theory, and then applied to case studies of organizational consultations. This is an advanced text for social work and business management." --"Journal of Social Work Education"