Validity Dynamism Of Personality Traits In The Selection Context

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VALIDITY DYNAMISM OF PERSONALITY TRAITS IN THE SELECTION CONTEXT Lian Shao Cornell University Based on the theoretical suggestion and empirical evidence of the idea of performance dynamism (i.e., that an individual's job performance changes with the passage of time), this paper argues that the criterion-related validity of selection devices (i.e., the correlation between any selection device's score and an individual's job performance rating) should not be treated as a constant but rather as a changing figure. Using personality tests on the Big Five traits (i.e., Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism) as example, this paper tries to explore how the magnitudes of personality traits as performance predictors might change over time based on the literature on the changes in job demands on motivation, stresscoping, socialization, and learning behavior-the aspects of a job most closely associated with personality traits-along with the studies on age-related changes in work motivation and coping strategies. Through meta-analytically examining the extent to which temporal variables operationalized in age or organizational tenure explain the significant variation in personality trait-job performance correlations across primary studies, this paper looks for evidence of criterion-related validity dynamism of the Big Five traits as one selection test assessed in the previous research. Although some hypotheses related to validity dynamism were not supported, this meta-analysis did indeed show that age explains some of the variability in findings for the Extraversion- and Agreeableness-job performance correlations. Moreover, job complexity showed to be one moderating effect on the relationship between personality trait and job performance. Overall, this meta-analysis presented us with some preliminary evidence of the dynamic nature of the criterion-related validity of personality traits, demonstrating, at least in some instances, the flawed assumption of a static validity coefficient prevalent in selection research. This idea of validity dynamism integrated with the recent development in personality measurement and other personality trait-related models will push selection research as well as personality trait-job performance correlation research, more specifically, to a new era.

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personality traits; job performance; meta-analysis


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Union Local


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Sturman, Michael Craig

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Bunge, John A
Hausknecht, John P.

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Hotel Administration

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Ph. D., Hotel Administration

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Doctor of Philosophy

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Government Document




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dissertation or thesis

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