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The Big Five personality traits are openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.
Apply the "Big Five" personality traits identified in psychology to organizational behavior
The concept of the "Big Five" personality traits is taken from psychology and includes five broad domains that describe personality. The Big Five personality traits are openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.
These five factors are assumed to represent the basic structure behind all personality traits. They were defined and described by several different researchers during multiple periods of research.
Employees are sometimes tested on the Big Five personality traits in collaborative situations to determine what strong personality traits they can add to a groupdynamic.
Businesses need to understand their people as well as their operations and processes. Understanding the personality components that drive the employee behavior is a very useful informational data point for management.
The concept of the "Big Five" personality traits is taken from psychology and includes five broad domains that describe personality. These five personality traits are used to understand the relationship between personality and various behaviors.
These five factors are assumed to represent the basic structure behind all personality traits. These five factors were defined and described by several different researchers during multiple periods of research. However, as a result of their broad definitions, the Big Five personality traits are not nearly as powerful in predicting and explaining actual behavior as are the more numerous lower-level, specific traits.
The Five Traits
The traits are:
Openness - Openness to experience describes a person's degree of intellectual curiosity, creativity, and preference for novelty and variety. Some disagreement remains about how to interpret this factor, which is sometimes called intellect.
Conscientiousness - Conscientiousness is a tendency to show self-discipline, act dutifully, and aim for achievement. Conscientiousness also refers to planning, organization, and dependability.
Extraversion - Extraversion describes energy, positive emotions, assertiveness, sociability, talkativeness, and the tendency to seek stimulation in the company of others.
Agreeableness - Agreeableness is the tendency to be compassionate and cooperative towards others rather than suspicious and antagonistic.
Neuroticism - Neuroticism describes vulnerability to unpleasant emotions like anger, anxiety, depression, or vulnerability. Neuroticism also refers to an individual's level of emotional stability and impulse control and is sometimes referred to as emotional stability.
Applicability to Organizational Behavior
When scored for individual feedback, these traits are frequently presented as percentile scores. For example, a conscientiousness rating in the 80th percentile indicates a relatively strong sense of responsibility and orderliness, whereas an extraversion rating in the 5th percentile indicates an exceptional need for solitude and quiet.
Employees are sometimes tested on the Big Five personality traits in collaborative situations to determine what strong personality traits they can add to the group dynamic. Personality tests can also be part of the behavioral interview process when a company is hiring to determine an individual's ability to act on certain personality characteristics.
Understanding its people is as important to a company as understanding its operations and processes. Understanding what personality components drive the behavior of subordinates is a highly useful informational data point for management that can be used to determine what type of assignments should be set, how motivation should be pursued, what team dynamics may arise, and how to best approach conflict and/or praise when applicable.
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“The Big Five Personality Traits.”
Boundless, 26 May. 2016.
Retrieved 28 Feb. 2017 from