For my project I observed the people at my job. I work at Taco Bell, so this group of people consisted of people from the ages of 16-40. The observations I made took place during three different days I worked, observing for a total of 24 hours plus. Stress is a major factor that I discovered taking place during the shifts. Mind set and emotion also play a big role in a work environment because you have to learn to adapt to different situations. One more thing that my observation focuses on is groupthink. Groupthink is super important because it is all about being a team and you have to work with people you may not like, but you have to deal with it. The last thing that I believe goes well into the work environment would be Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. This covers a lot of topics that are important overall in a business.
To begin, stress is a mental or emotional state resulting from various circumstances (Rathus, 473). Stress is a very common thing in most people’s lives. In a workplace, stress can play a big factor. At Taco Bell, stress can rise as the day goes on, some days more than others. Stress can be a very damaging factor because when the crowd picks up and there are a bunch of orders on the screen, people begin to panic. It was kind of easy see in people because of the behaviors that they were displaying such as being easily frustrated, agitated, and moody. As stress increases in one person, it tends to promote a domino effect in the other coworkers. This creates a stressful environment which can affect the productivity for the day.
Next, observations over mindset were made. Mindset is the way that we operate and make decisions (Psychology Today Mindsets). Mindset is important because it sets the mood of the environment. Mindset can affect the way situations are handled through a shift at Taco Bell. If you maintain a positive mindset, getting through a shift will be easier and make things run smoother. If you have a negative mindset, it could affect those around you. During observations, some people who went into work quiet and closed off, acting like they did not care to be there, struggled to make it through their shift. On the other hand, people who came into work bubbly, happy and were friendly to coworkers and customers overcame the struggles and helped to create a more positive environment for the other coworkers and the customers.
In addition, emotion was observed throughout the workplace. Emotions describe feelings within that influence your internal and external behaviors (Psychology Today Emotions). During observations, there were many different emotions displayed. The most noticeable emotion showed when people brought their outside personal lives into work. We all go through things in life, but some people are more private about things than others. Many people at Taco Bell openly discuss outside events, distracting them from the job. Many times people have showed up to work crying or upset. By coming into work crying, they automatically bring emotion into the job. Emotions really should stay out of a job like Taco Bell because when someone runs high on emotions they can act negatively or poorly toward a customer.
Furthermore, groupthink describes people coming together as one to help make decisions (Psychology Today Groupthink). In a work environment like Taco Bell, groupthink can make or break the day. During observations, the coworkers came together at the beginning of a shift to discuss what everyoneś role was for the day. This was a very effective method so that it was clear to everyone where they were supposed to be and what they should be doing. Also, if there was a problem or a customer complaint, the managers came together to decide how best to handle the situation. It was also observed that groupthink allows the coworkers to come together as a team to make things run smoother and keep out conflict and drama.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
Finally, Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs fits well and puts a lot of observations into one category. “Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a motivational theory in psychology comprising a five-tier model of human needs, often depicted as hierarchical levels within a pyramid” (Simply Psych). People have a lot of different needs in the work environment, covering almost every level of his needs pyramid. Safety was observed when doors were locked at night and people using the buddy system. The belonging and esteem factors go together by people having friends at work and forming relationships. Also, people built self-esteem as they completed something successfully or did something that made them feel good. Lastly, self-fulfillment showed during shifts because having people notice all the hard work you do seemed to make people happier overall.
In conclusion, the team members observed at Taco Bell showed stress, mindset, emotion, groupthink and Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs throughout their shifts. While some of these were shown negatively and other positively, they all play a role throughout the work day. Whether that’s stress getting the best of an employee or a bad mindset affecting the work effort throughout the day. In another sense, too much emotion in a job like Taco Bell can be damaging. On a positive note, when employees come together through the use of group think the day can run more smoothly. The Hierarchy of Needs plays a pivotal role in the success of the work day. While a lot of my observations showed the negative behaviors throughout the work day, there were also a lot of positives.