chapter  3
13 Pages

Psychological contracts: hidden agreements in life and at work


Psychological contracts are covert and unspoken expectations, assumptions, presumptions and myths that influence and permeate all significant relationships. They belong to our inner worlds, are fashioned in our minds and often remain buried in our unconscious. They also reside in the collective shadows of organisations; silent, hidden and persuasive influences on attitudes and behaviour. Blind to their existence, we do not notice how they leak into our world-view and wreak havoc in our relationships. We are usually unaware of where they come from and who is responsible for them. Our psychological contracts often end up in us blaming others for things they do not see, and did not sign up to.