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Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Stephen A. Woods, Fiona C. Patterson, Anna Koczwara and Juilitta A. Sofat

The aim of this paper is to examine the impact of personality traits of the Big Five model on training outcomes to help explain variation in training effectiveness.

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Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to examine the impact of personality traits of the Big Five model on training outcomes to help explain variation in training effectiveness.

Design/methodology/approach

Associations of the Big Five with self-reported learning following training were tested in a pre- and post-design in a field sample of junior medical practitioners (N = 99), who attended a training workshop on self-awareness. Associations are reported of personality traits with post-training learning measured immediately following the workshop and one-month later controlling for pre-training learning.

Findings

Conscientiousness was related to post-training learning at both times. None of the remaining Big Five factors were associated with post-training learning.

Research limitations/implications

The study contributes to the literature on personality and training outcomes, clarifying the associations of traits with outcomes in a pre-and-post design. Although the study sample has limitations, the findings have implications for numerous lines of future research, in particular in understanding the role of training in relations of personality and job performance.

Practical implications

Practitioners should consider ways to encourage training participants to approach training conscientiously. Personality assessment might help people reflect on their approach to learning to adapt it during training.

Originality/value

No study has previously examined the role of personality traits in training outcomes using a pre- and post-design. The role of conscientiousness in workplace learning is underlined by the findings. While dimensions such as openness and extraversion may encourage people to participate in training, conscientiousness may make the difference in promoting internalized individual development and change following training.

Details

Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 28 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-5626

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 June 2016

Stephen A Woods, Fiona C Patterson, Bart Wille and Anna Koczwara

The purpose of this paper is to re-examine the role of personality in occupational specialty choice, to better understand how and in what ways personality traits might influence…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to re-examine the role of personality in occupational specialty choice, to better understand how and in what ways personality traits might influence vocational development after a person has chosen a career.

Design/methodology/approach

The study tested hypotheses in a sample of UK medical students, each of whom had chosen their specialty pathway, and completed a measure of the Big Five personality traits. Associations of the junior doctor’s Big Five personality traits with the Holland’s realistic, investigative, artistic, social, enterprising, conventional (RIASEC) profiles of their medical specialty selections (derived from the O*NET database) were examined.

Findings

Findings provided good support for the hypotheses. Junior doctors’ agreeableness (with social) and neuroticism (with realistic, artistic and enterprising) were the main predictors of the RIASEC profiles of their specialty selections.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest that personality traits influence specialty selection in predictable ways, and differently compared to occupational choice. The paper discusses findings within a theoretical framework that explains how and why trait influences on within occupational specialty selection differ from influences on occupational interest and choice more broadly. The potential mechanisms underlying these associations are explored in the context of motivational aspects of agreeableness and neuroticism.

Practical implications

Within-occupation specialties should feature in career guidance discussions and interventions more explicitly to enable people to decide whether occupational specialties are available that appeal to their individual differences.

Originality/value

This is the first study to examine the relations of personality and occupational specialty through the lens of the RIASEC model, and the first to propose cross-occupation theoretical pathways from personality to specialty choice. The data from the field of medicine enable us to test the propositions in a suitably diverse set of occupational specialties.

Details

Career Development International, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 June 2003

135

Abstract

Details

Career Development International, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1362-0436

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