Business Psychology Models

Business Psychology Models

Patrick has developed a number of models which he uses for understanding customers, knowing how to meet their needs and ensuring that companies and organisations do so effectively.

The Four Pleasures: Understanding People

The Four Pleasures is a model that comes from the field of anthropology. Patrick uses this tool for understanding people, knowing what they want, and delivering it through his clients’ products, services and marketing campaigns.

 The four pleasures are:

  • Physio-Pleasure is to do with the body and the senses. It includes the visual, audio and tactile qualities of products and services as well as their physical effects on a person.
  • Psycho-Pleasure is about cognitive and emotional issues. For example, is a product or service easy to understand and use, is it emotionally engaging and does the way that it is communicated capture people’s interest?
  • Socio-Pleasure is about relationships. For example, does the product or service facilitate social situations, does it help people communicate and does it confer social status?
  • Ideo-pleasure is to do with people’s values and aspirations. For example, people concerned about the environment prefer environmentally friendly products, people concerned about animal welfare prefer products that have not been tested on animals.

Hierarchy of Consumer Needs

Level 1: Functionality. For a product or service to have any value it has to be able to perform its main function at an acceptable level. This level includes the features of a product or service offer and factors such as quality, reliability and durability.

Level 2: Usability. This is about how easy the product or service is to use, how long it takes to achieve tasks and how much effort it takes to understand how the product or service works.

Level 3: Pleasure. This is about the emotional benefits that the product or service provides. These often go significantly beyond the practical benefits they provide. The best products and services provide positive emotions when being used. They make people feel good about themselves and may even be part of people’s aspirations and self-identity.

The Attributes of Products, Services and Brands

These are the six attributes of products, services, marketing campaigns and brands that can be used to deliver the practical and emotional benefits which customers want.

They are:

  • Functional Attributes. These are the ‘rational’ or ‘objective’ characteristics of products and services. They include features and functionality, reliability and durability and usability
  • Aesthetic Attributes. These are about look and feel of products and services. Examples include. They include colours, forms, layouts, textures and sounds.
  • Marketing. This is about the way that a product service or brand is marketed. It includes key messages, communication channels, PR and endorsements.
  • Price Point. This refers to how much a product or service costs and where a brand is placed as compared to it's competitors in terms of price.
  • Behaviour. This refers to the behaviour of the company and employees. It includes how customers are treated, employee welfare and corporate social responsibility.
  • Brand Dress. These are the marks and symbols of a brand. They include logos and fonts, strap lines, slogans and colours.


The Principles of Success

This model has been derived from positive psychology, the scientific study of why some individuals and organisations are more effective and successful than others.

The characteristics of effective companies, organisations and individuals are:

  • Take Responsibility. People are clear what their responsibilities are and are committed to fulfilling them.
  • Set Goals. Goals are clearly defined and consistent with the overall aims of the organisation.
  • Be Positive. There is a positive atmosphere in which people feel happy, motivated and see the value in their work.
  • Persevere Intelligently. People work with determination and focus, but are also flexible and well informed and work smartly.
  • Connect with People. Relationships between colleagues are positive and cooperative and people feel appreciated for the job that they do.

Good Society Framework

The Good Society Framework describes nine dimensions of quality of life. It is derived from the synthesis of a wide range of quality of life models.

  • Relationships. Strong friendly supportive communities; good racial and cultural relationships; strong social networks; stable and happy marriages and long term relationships.
  • Economy. Economic prosperity; fulfilling employment; being able to buy the essentials; affording luxuries.
  • Environment and Infrastructure. Pleasant and sustainable natural environment free of pollution; attractive and functional build environment; ; good transport and communication links; plentiful and affordable energy.
  • Health. Plentiful nutritious food and drink; effective and affordable healthcare; safe working environments; high levels of physical and mental health; long life expectancy; few accidents
  • Peace and Security. Low levels of crime and antisocial behaviour; not being at war or at risk of terrorist attack.
  • Culture and Leisure. A wide and engaging selection of high culture, sport and popular entertainment; opportunities to participate in culture, sport and other pursuits.
  • Spirituality, Religion and Philosophy. Access to teachings and literature about the meaning and purpose of life; freedom to practice your chosen religion or form of spirituality.
  • Education. An education which enables people to thrive in society and which is interesting and rewarding in itself; being able to make informed judgements; having the knowledge and skills to thrive professionally
  • Governance. Freedom of expression; fair and transparent justice; equal rights; freedom of movement.


Quantified Feelings Model of Emotion

This four dimensional model combines three quantitative dimensions of emotion with a qualitative descriptor. The three quantitative dimensions are:

  • Positivity refers to whether the emotion makes the person feel good or bad. For example, joy is an emotion that makes people feel good, whereas despair is an emotion that makes people feel bad.
  • Activation is about the amount of energy and stimulation an emotion causes. For example although excitement and relaxation are both positive emotions, excitement has a far higher level of activation.
  • Dominance refers to the extent to which the person experiencing the emotion perceives that they have power
in the situation. For example, although fear and anger are both emotions that are negative in affect and high in activation, fear is low in dominance as the person feels powerless whereas anger is high in dominance as the person who is experiencing it feels power.

The quantitative dimensions are helpful in classifying emotions and their relationships to one another, but do not fully differentiate between them. For example, the positive emotions passion and exhilaration are in similar positions on the quantitative dimensions (high activation, high positivity, neutral dominance) but will be experienced differently (passion is an emotion which is usually tied to a specific task, object or person and tends to direct someone to a purpose, whereas exhilaration is a more generalised pleasant high energy emotion).

Similarly, the negative emotions frustration and discomfort are in similar places on each of the dimensions but also feel different from each other.

To deal with these differences a fourth dimension was included:

  • Feeling is a qualitative description of what it is like to experience a particular emotion. It captures the affective differences that enable us to distinguish the emotions from each other. For example, the emotion ‘confidence’ might be described as ‘a feeling of calm assuredness that comes from the expectation that I can achieve my goals.’

The model builds on previous work in the area of emotion modelling. Conceptually it can be thought of as a combination of an extended version of discrete emotion theory and the PAD (Pleasure, Arousal, Dominance) emotional state model. 

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