Chapter 9 – Personality, Cultural Values and Ability
Capture what people are like:
Personality: The structures and propensities inside a person that explain his or her characteristic
patterns of thought, emotion, and behavior; personality reflects what people are like and creates their
social reputation. Personality is also a collection of multiple specific traits.
Traits: Recurring trends in people’s responses to their environment. (Adjectives such as responsible,
critical, organized, or achievement-oriented are all examples of traits).
Cultural Values: Shared beliefs about desirable end states or modes of conduct in a given culture that
influence the expression of traits.
Capture what people can do:
Ability: Relatively stables capabilities of people for performing a particular range of related activities.
The Big Five Taxonomy
Big Five: The five major dimensions of personality including CANOE.
Conscientiousness: Dimension of personality reflecting traits like being dependable, organized, reliable,
ambitious, hardworking and persevering (determined).
Has the biggest influence on job performance
Accomplishment Striving: A strong desire to accomplish task-related goals as a means of
expressing one’s personality.
Moderate positive correlation with job performance and organizational commitment
Agreeableness: Dimension of personality reflecting traits like being kind, cooperative, sympathetic,
helpful, courteous, and warm.
Communion Striving: A strong desire to obtain acceptance in personal relationships as a means
of expressing one’s personality.
Neuroticism: Dimension of personality reflecting traits like being nervous, moody, emotional, insecure,
jealous, and unstable.
Negative Affectivity: A dispositional tendency to experience unpleasant moods, such as
hostility, nervousness, and annoyance. Differential Exposure to Stressors: Being more likely to appraise day-to-day situations as
stressful, thereby feeling that stressors are encountered more frequently.
Differential Reactivity to Stressors: Being less likely to believe that one can cope with the
stressors experienced on a daily basis.
Openness to Experience: Dimensions of personality reflecting traits like being curious, imaginative,
creative, complex, refined, and sophisticated.
Beneficial in some jobs but not others.
Jobs that need innovative thing benefit from employees that carry an openness to experience
dimension of traits with them.
Extraversion: Dimension of personality reflecting traits like being talkative, sociable, passionate,
assertive, bold, and dominant.
Easiest to judge In zero acquaintance situations
o Zero Acquaintance Situations: Situations in which two people have just met.
Status Striving: A strong desire to obtain power and influence within a social structure as a
means of expressing one’s personality.
Tend to be high in positive affectivity.
o Positive Affectivity: A dispositional tendency to experience pleasant, engaging moods
such as enthusiasm, excitement, and elation.
Ethnocentrism: One who views his or her cultural values as “right” and values of other cultures as
Geert Hofstede’s Dimensions of Cultural Values
Individualism-Collectivism: The degree to which a culture has a loosely knit social framework
(individualism) or a tight social framework (collectivism)
Power Distance: The degree to which a culture prefers equal power distribution (low power distance) or
an unequal power distribution (high power distance)
Uncertainty Avoidance: The degree to which a culture tolerates ambiguous situations (low uncertainty
avoidance) or feels threatened by them (high uncertainty avoidance)
Masculinity-Femininity: The degree to which a culture values stereotypically male traits (masculinity) or
stereotypically female traits (femininity) Short-term vs. Long-term Orientation: The degree to which a culture stresses values that are past-and
present-oriented (short-term orientation) or future-oriented (long-term orientation) Ability
Can be grouped into 3 general categories:
Cognitive Ability: Capabilities related to the use of knowledge to make decisions and solve problems.
Positive strong correlations with job performance due to smart employees fulfill the requirements of
their job descriptions more effectively than do less smart employees.
Weak correlation with organizational commitment.
o Oral and written comprehension – ability to understand spoken and written words
o Oral and written expression – ability to communicate ideas by speaking and writing.
Police, Fire and Ambulance Dispatchers
o Number Facility – Capability to do simple math operations such as adding/subtracting.
o Mathematical Reasoning – Ability to choose and apply formulas to solve problems that
Treasurers, Financial Managers and Statisticians
o Problem Sensitivity – Ability to sense that there is or will be a problem
o Deductive Reasoning - Ability to solve problems applying general rules o Inductive Reasoning – Ability to consider several pieces of information and then reach a
more general conclusion regarding how those pieces are related.
o Originality – Ability to develop clever and novel ways to solve problems.
Anesthesiologists, surgeons, business executives and fire inspectors
Spatial (3D) Ability
o Spatial Orientation – A good understanding of where one is relative to other things in
o Visualization – Ability to imagine how separate things will look if they were put together
in a particular way
Pilots, Drivers, Boat Captains
o Speed and Flexibility of Closure – Ability to pick out a pattern of informatio