The Big Five Personality Traits at Work.

Talent Assesment Nov 23, 2022

We encounter different types of people in our day to day lives - people we can look up to, people who love being themselves, . These differences in each individual is what we term as ‘personality’. Personality refers to ‘individual differences in patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving'. Understanding these differences can help identify individual traits and maximize their potential and productivity at the workplace.

Hiring isn’t an easy game - you need to find candidates not only with the right skills and abilities, but also have the right attitude and can fit well with your company’s culture and values. Organizations today are putting a premium on hiring employees who fit their culture and who can help them navigate through the challenges of modern business. As a result, employability tests that assess personality and behavior are being developed for use in corporates based on popular models and frameworks of personality psychology.

The Big Five Personality Traits

Currently, the most widely used method to link personality and job-related factors are the Big Five model. The Big Five is among the most well-known methods for identifying and quantifying individual personality differences. It is used to understand better who people are and how they are relatively favorable to others. The five personality traits are commonly referred to as the OCEAN framework, with the five traits being

Big Five Personality Traits
Big Five Personality Traits

Openness to Experience -

Openness to experience refers to the desire to explore new things. It is how individuals make sense of the world around them and a positive orientation towards change. Someone who scores high on this trait is more likely to be imaginative, open-minded to new ideas, and think creatively. On the other hand, an individual low in this domain tends to stick to conventional practices and is rigid about their methods. They lack artistic sensitivity and are inclined towards facts and figures more.

Conscientiousness -

Consciousness is associated with being organized and committed. They diligently fulfill their obligations and are constantly mindful of their tasks. It is the propensity to act, feel and think in ways that are appropriate in the current situation. Individuals who score high on conscientiousness are seen as the perfect team players (often your best hires), as they know exactly what to prioritize and act on it.
Employees who are conscientious work effectively. Studies have shown that among the five personality traits, conscientiousness is acknowledged as the strongest critical determinant of individual desirable behaviours and outcomes across various occupations.

Extraversion -

Extraversion describes how one interacts with their social environment - the way they express their emotions and how at ease they are in their surroundings. Individuals high on extra versions thrive in social situations. They are outgoing, enjoy being around people, and communicate well.

We all know that one team member who loves going around and talking to others - they’ll be at all your office get-togethers and have ‘tea’ on what’s happening in your office. Yep, someone who would definitely score high on Extraversion. The kind you would love to have in your sales team or as your project manager.

Those who score low in Extraversion generally prefer solitude, tend to avoid small talk and keep to themselves when working. Not a bad thing at all. Francesca Gino, a behavioural scientist, stated that individuals who score low in Extraversion make great leaders - especially when they have an active workforce. Now you know what else to look for in your subsequent leadership hiring!

Agreeableness -

Agreeable people are more prosocial. They value harmony and are more likely to help others, are affectionate, and get along with people. People with high agreeableness scores are frequently praised for their ability to compromise, but they perform comparatively low when put in situations that require them to make rational choices.

According to a study on the influence of agreeableness on job outcomes, agreeableness can function as a component of a skill set that directly enhances job performance and productivity in organizations, as opposed to indirect methods of career development or occupation selection.

Neuroticism -

The term "neurotic" describes a person's emotional stability and temperament in general. Individuals who exhibit high neuroticism are more likely to feel anxiety, sadness, worry, and low self-esteem. Along with being self-conscious and unsure of themselves, they may also be temperamental or easily irritated.

In uncertain circumstances, emotionally stable people show good composure and are sure of themselves. Studies show that people with neurotic tendencies typically struggle to concentrate on their tasks for long periods of time. Neuroticism is not always a bad thing, though. When it comes to their interpersonal relationships or their jobs, neurotic people frequently are aware of potential consequences, risks, or upsets. They'll put in a tremendous amount of effort, even in the absence of an external reward that has been promised, in order to avoid any threats they can see.

Given a quick overview of how various personality traits present themselves in the workplace. managers and recruiters should now focus on identifying and choosing candidates who will be a good fit for the relevant roles and be able to contribute to their full potential in the given work environment.

With the help of our personality tests organizations can asses the candidates personality traits and make better hiring decisions at their organisation.
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Sharanya Mosalakanti

Sharanya is a People Science Associate at PerspectAI. HR Tech and the future of AI intrigue her, and she loves reading up! On other days, you can find her enjoying music gigs or concerts.

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