Chapter 2 - Personality and Learning

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Management (MGH)
Joanna Heathcote

Week 2Chapter 2Personality and LearningWhat is PersonalityPersonalitythe relatively stable set of psychological characteristics that influences the way an individual interacts with his or her environment and how he or she feels thinks and behavesSummarizes his or her personal style of dealing with the worldPersonality consists of a number of dimensions and traits that are determined in a complex way by genetic predisposition and by ones longterm learning historyStable but susceptible to change through adult learning experiencesAfter WW2 use of personality tests for selection of military personnel became widespread 1950s and 1960s became popular in business organizationsDispositional approachfocuses on individuals dispositions and personality individuals possess stable traits or characteristics that influence their attitudes and behavioursIndividuals are predisposed to behave in certain waysSituational approachcharacteristic of the organizational setting such as rewards and punishment influence peoples feelings attitudes and behaviourInteractionist approach interactionismOB is a function of both dispositions and the situation to predict and understand OB one must know something about an individuals personality and the setting in which he or she worksRole of personality in different situationsweak or strongIn weak situations it is not always clear how a person should behave personality has the most impact in weak situations ex Newly formed volunteer community organizationbc there are loosely defined roles few rules and weak reward and punishment contingenciesStrong situations there are clear expectations for appropriate behaviour personality have less impact routine military operations bc there are more defined roles rules and contingenciesStressors which ones are perceived stressful and the way that people react to stress is also influenced by ones personalityInternationalist perspective is that some personality characteristics are useful in certain situations key concept fit putting the right person in the right job group or orgFiveFactor Model or Big Five provides a framework for classifying personality characteristics into five general dimensionsFiveFactor Model of PersonalityExtraversionoutgoing enjoy social situations vs Introvertsavoids them and shyEmotional stabilityneuroticismdegree to which a person has appropriate emotional control high emotional stability low neuroticismselfconfident and high selfesteem lower emotional stability high neuroticismself doubt and depressionAgreeablenessextent to which a person is friendly and approachable agreeablewarm and considerate less agreeable people are cold and aloofConscientiousnessdegree to which a person is responsible and achievement oriented conscientiousdependable and positively motivated less conscientious are unreliable
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