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President’s Column

Tara Behrend

It feels great to be writing this column, still buzzing from the annual conference and excited for the year ahead. I am thrilled, honored, and humbled to serve as your president this year. We have an incredible Executive Board full of thoughtful, kind, and creative minds, and hundreds of energetic volunteer leaders working to make SIOP what it is. We are also led by the amazing and hardworking staff team and our Executive Director Tracy Vanneman. Although Tracy will be departing later this summer, she is working tirelessly to ensure a smooth transition to the new CEO, whose search is underway now.

In case you missed my closing remarks at the conference, I am reprinting them below.

SIOP, this is such an exciting time for I-O psychology. After so many years of wishing that we had greater visibility and influence as a field, we are now recognized as the leading voices in topics like work burnout, remote work, AI-based assessments, and many more important societal issues. We owe past SIOP leaders a huge thanks for all of their efforts in getting us here and all of you working in organizations to educate others about the value of I-O.

Now, we have to ask ourselves what we will do with our voice. How will we make sure that I-O psychology continues to grow in influence and respect in the future? As they say, the best way to get the credit is to deserve it. We are all responsible for elevating I-O psychology through our science and through our application of scientific principles. My presidential theme for this year reflects this responsibility:

Rigor, Relevance, and Reach

Rigor means that SIOP will continue to ensure that the highest scientific, professional, and ethical standards are upheld in both research and application of I-O psychology principles. This is what sets us apart; it is our unique value, and we will continue to lead by example.

Relevance means that we will focus our efforts on topics with societal importance. SIOP is an absolutely unique organization in part because all parts of knowledge generation are represented: People working in organizations, researchers, and civil servants are all working on making society better, and this is the only place they can share their wisdom with each other about the biggest problems we are facing as a society and what we can do about it.

And reach means we will make sure that we get knowledge into the hands of people who need it, whether that means policy and government, executive leaders, or local communities.

We have a number of exciting initiatives already happening that will help us meet these goals. For example, the AI-based assessments task force led by Chris Nye, which recently concluded its work, has issued guidelines for creators and users of AI-based tests. The GREAT Committee and Chair Kristen Saboe continue to build relationships with federal government entities. And the Greater China Initiative that Mo Wang created has been hugely successful in its first year.

I hope to launch a few new initiatives this year as well. First, I have created a task force to explore the possibility of creating a SIOP certification credential. Second, we will expand IOP, our flagship journal, to include a wider range of article types, including empirical reports. Third, the entire Executive Board is focused on modernizing our organizational structure and practices to become more nimble and reflect our growing and changing organization. This means building better development and succession planning opportunities for future leaders and more interconnected committee structures to facilitate collaboration. You can expect more information about these initiatives and others to come out through the year, and I encourage you to get in touch with me at any time if you have questions.

We have a lot of work to do, and we need your help to do it. I hope you will consider volunteering for a committee that interests you. Thank you for making SIOP an organization that I’m proud to be a part of; this is my 20th year of membership, and I’m looking forward to many more.


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