GSB – MBA – TM I
Personality and emotions
What is Personality?
Personality - All our behaviour is somewhat shaped by
our personalities. – a dynamic concept describing the
growth and development of a person’s whole
psychological system. It is the sum total of ways in
which an individual reacts and interacts with others.
Some aggregate whole that is greater than the sum of
“The dynamic organisation within an individual of
those psychological systems that determine his
unique adjustments to his environment.”
• Personality, according to Fred Luthans,
will mean how people affect others and
how they understand and view
themselves, as well as their pattern of
inner and outer measurable traits and
the person-situation interaction.
• How people affect others depends on
external appearance (height, weight,
facial features, color, and other physical
aspects) and traits.
An adult’s personality is generally considered to be
made up of both hereditary and environmental
factors, moderated by situational conditions.
• Factors that were deter –mined at conception -
physical stature, facial attractiveness, gender,
temperament, muscle composition and reflexes,
energy level, and biological rhythms – biological,
physiological and inherent psychological make up
of parents. – the heredity approach says that the
ultimate explanation of an individual’s personality is
the molecular structure of the genes, located in the
• Research among children support the hereditary
theory – shyness, fear, and distress, height, hair
• Research among twins – separated at birth and
brought up separately – one set of twins separated
39 yrs ago and raised 45 miles apart were found to
drive the same model and color car, chain-smoked
the same brand of cigarette, owned dogs with the
same name, and regularly vacationed within 3
blocks of each other in a beach community 1500
miles away. Genetics accounts for 50% of the
personality differences and more than 30% of the
variation in occupational and leisure interests.
• A report by the American Psychological
• “Studies over the past 20 yrs on twins
and adopted children have firmly
established that there is a genetic
component to just about every human
trait and behaviour, including
personality, general intelligence and
• The report concludes:
• “Many genes are responsible for various
aspects of people’s temperament, and
those genes appear to interact with
each other in complicated ways that
influence several traits at once- and
then likely only in very subtle ways, with
any one gene likely accounting for only 1
or 2% of the variance in trait.”
• Individual job satisfaction is found to be stable
over time, according to research –Depends on
the person and less on external
• If personality were completely dictated by
birth, no experience could change it. But
personality factors are not completely
dictated by heredity.
• The debate should not be nature or nurture,
but nature and nurture that contributes to
Role of the brain
The genes also affect brain functions that in turn
affect how people interact with their
environment and thus their personalities.
Some people, call the brain, “the last frontier”
because we still know very little about it, may
hold more answers for personality
• Culture in which one is raised, early conditioning,
the norms among our family, friends, social
groups, and other influences we experience.
• Both heredity and environment are important.
Heredity sets the parameters or outer limits, but
an individual’s full potential will be determined
by how well he or she adjusts tot eh demands
and requirements of the environment.
• Influences the effects of environment on
personality, which changes in different
situations. Certain situations are more
significant than others.
4 Personality Theories
> Traits Theory
> Psychodynamic Theory
> Humanistic theory
> Integrative approach
1. Traits Theory
Trait is an the sum of all enduring characteristics
that describe an individual’s behaviour.-observable
patterns of behaviour that last over time.
States that to understand individuals, we must break
down behaviour patterns into a series of observable
behaviour. Gordon Allport, saw traits as broad ,
general guides that lend consistency to behaviour.
Raymond Cattell identified 16 traits that formed
the basis for differences in individual behaviour. He
described traits in bipolar adjective combinations,
such as self-assured/apprehensive,
reserved/outgoing, and submissive/dominant.
Diificulty because of large number- one
study identified 17953 traits.
Impossible to predict behaviour
when such a large number is to be
taken into account.
One researcher identified 171 traits
but concluded that they were
superficial and lacked in descriptive
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment
is a psychometric questionnaire designed to measure
psychological preferences in how people perceive the
world and make decisions. A personality test that
taps four characteristics and classifies people into
1 of 16 personality types - The world’s most widely
used personality assessment, with as many as two
million assessments administered annually.
Fundamental to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is the
theory of psychological type as originally developed
by Carl Jung.
Jung proposed the existence of two dichotomous
pairs of cognitive functions:
The "rational" (judging) functions: thinking and
The "irrational" (perceiving) functions: sensing and
Jung went on to suggest that these functions are
expressed in either an introverted or extraverted
form. From Jung's original concepts, Briggs and Myers
developed their own theory of psychological type,
•Extroverted vs. Introverted (E or I)
•Sensing vs. Intuitive (S or N)
•Thinking vs. Feeling (T or F)
•Judging vs. Perceiving (P or J)
Jung proposed the existence of two dichotomous pairs of
The "rational" (judging) functions: thinking and feeling
The "irrational" (perceiving) functions: sensing and intuition
Jung went on to suggest that these functions are expressed in
either an introverted or extraverted form. From Jung's original
concepts, Briggs and Myers developed their own theory of
The MBTI sorts some of these psychological
differences into four opposite pairs, or dichotomies,
with a resulting 16 possible psychological types. None
of these types are better or worse; however, Briggs
and Myers theorized that individuals naturally prefer
one overall combination of type differences. In the
same way that writing with the left hand is hard work
for a right-hander, so people tend to find using their
opposite psychological preferences more difficult,
even if they can become more proficient (and
therefore behaviorally flexible) with practice and
The 16 types are typically referred to by an
abbreviation of four letters—the initial letters of
each of their four type preferences (except in the
case of intuition, which uses the abbreviation N to
distinguish it from Introversion). For instance:
ESTJ: extraversion (E), sensing (S), thinking (T),
INFP: introversion (I), intuition (N), feeling (F),
And so on for all 16 possible type combinations.
Primary traits (Robert Cattell)
1. Reserved vs outgoing
2. Less intelligent vs more intelligent
3. Affected by feelings vs emotionally stable
4. Submissive vs dominant
5. Serious vs happy-go-lucky
6. Expedient vs Conscientious
7. Timid vs venturesome
8. Tough-minded vs sensitive
9. Trusting vs suspicious
10. Practical vs imaginative
11. Forthright vs shrewd
12. Self-assured vs apprehensive
13. Conservative vs experimenting
14. Group dependent vs self-sufficient
15. Uncontrolled vs controlled
16. Relaxed vs tense
• It is a 100 –question personality test that asks
people how they usually feel or act in particular
situations. Groups of EThe answers help to
classify them under the 4 groups, ESTJ or INFP
and further combined 16 personality types.
• e.g., INTJs are visionaries – have original minds
and great drive for their own ideas and purposes
– skeptical, critical, independent, determined,
and often stubborn.
• ESTJs are organisers – realistic, logical, analytical, and
decisive and have a natural head for business or
mechanics. They like to organise and run activities.
• ENTPs are conceptualisers – innovative, individualistic,
versatile, and attracted to entrepreneurial ideas. –
resourceful in solving challenging problems but may
neglect routine assignments.
• A recent book that profiled 13 contemporary business
people who created super successful firms including
Apple Computer, Federal Express, Honda Motors, MS,
and Sony found that all 13 are intuitive thinkers (NTs).
This result is particularly interesting because intuitive
thinkers represent only about 5% of the population.
The Big Five Model of Personality
The 5 basic dimensions underlie all others and
encompass most of the significant variations in
human personality. The Big Five factors are:
Sociable, gregarious, and assertive
Good-natured, cooperative, and trusting.
Responsible, dependable, persistent, and
Openness to Experience
Imaginativeness, artistic, sensitivity,
and intellectualism, curiosity.
Calm, self-confident, secure (positive)
versus nervous, depressed, and insecure
Extroversion – a personality dimension
describing someone who is sociable,
gregarious, and assertive. – one’s comfort
level with relationships. Introverts tend to be
reserved, timid, and quiet.
Agreeableness – describes someone who
is good natured, cooperative, warm and
trusting. People who score low on
agreeableness are cold, disagreeable, and
Conscientious - responsible, hard-
working, dependable, persistent, and
organised– Those who score low on this
dimension are easily distracted, lazy,
disorganised, and unreliable.
Emotional stability – tests a person’s
ability to withstand stress. –calm, self-
confident, cool, and secure (positive)
versus nervous, anxious, depressed, and
insecure (negative) .
Openness to experience – range
of interests and fascination with
novelty., imagination, artistic
sensitivity, cultured, curiosity, and
creativity. Those at the other end are
conventional and find comfort in the
familiar.- practical with narrow
> Some theorists argue that
simply identifying traits is not
enough. Personality is dynamic and
not completely stable.
> Trait theories ignore the
influence of situations.
2. Psychodynamic/Psychoanalytic theory (the
uncoscious determinants of behaviour
• Based on the work of Sigmund Freud, this theory
emphasises the unconscious determinants of
behaviour. Freud saw personality as the interaction
between 3 elements of personality, viz., the id, ego, and
superego. The id is the most primitive element, the
source of drives and impulses that operates in an
uncensored manner. The superego , similar to our
conscience, contains values and the ‘shoulds and
should-nots’ of the personality – ongoing conflict
between the id and the superego. The ego manages the
conflict between the Id and the superego.
In this role, the ego compromises, and
the result is the individual’s use of
defense mechanisms such as denial
The contribution of this theory is its
focus on unconscious influences on
3. Humanistic theory
• Carl Rogers believed that all people have a basic
drive toward self-actualisation, (Abraham Maslow)
which is the quest to be all you can be. The theory
focuses on individual growth and improvement –
distinctly people centred and also emphasises the
individual’s view of the world- contributes an
understanding of the self to personality theory and
contends that the self-concept is the most
important part of an individual’s personality.
4. Integrative Approach
Personality is described as a composite of the
individual’s psychological processes. Personality
dispositions include emotions , cognitions,
attitudes, expectancies, and fantasies. Dispositions
mean the tendencies of individuals to respond to
situations in consistent ways. Influenced by both
genetics and experiences, dispositions can be
modified. The integrative approach focuses on
both permanent (Dispositions) and situational
variables as combined predictors of behaviour.
• More importantly, it draws on the
self-concept including nature
(heredity and physiological/biological
dimensions) and nurture
dimensions), dispositional traits, the
social cognitive interactions between
the person and the environment,
and the sociailisation process.
Major Personality Attributes
• Locus of control
• Risk taking
• Type A personality
Locus of Control
The degree to which people believe
they are masters of their own fate.
Individuals who believe that they
control what happens to them.
Individuals who believe that what
happens to them is controlled by
outside forces such as luck or chance.
• Research shows that people who rate high in
externality are less satisfied with their jobs,
have high absenteeism rates, are more
alienated from the work setting and are less
involved in their jobs than are internals – less
likely initially to get a job. In contrast to
externals, internals exhibit more motivation,
and willingness to take action in their initial
• Externals are more dissatisfied , as they
perceive themselves as having little control
over the organisational outcomes that are
important to them. Internals. Similarly placed
attribute organisational outcomes to their
own actions. If they are dissatisfied, they will
• Absenteeism on account of sickness is lower
among internals as they assume responsibility
for personal health.
Overall, internals are better performers,
depending on the jobs – search more actively
for information before making a decision,
more motivated to achieve, make greater
attempt to control their environment – more
likely to assume managerial positions and
prefer participative management. They show
higher motivation, hold stronger beliefs that
effort leads to performance, receive higher
salaries and display less anxiety than
Externals are more compliant, will follow
instructions – succeed at well structured and
routine jobs.- reluctant to participate in
Internals will do well on sophisticated tasks,
requiring complex information processing and
learning. –More suited to jobs requiring
autonomy, e.g., sales job. They may not like
Conditions Favoring High Machs
•Minimal rules and regulations
•Emotions distract for others
Degree to which an individual is pragmatic,
maintains emotional distance, and believes that ends
can justify means.
• Named after Niccolo Machiavalli – 16th century –
how to gain and use power. “If it works, use it” –
consistent with high-Mach perspective. High-Machs
manipulate more, are persuaded less, and persuade
others. They flourish
- when they interact face-to-face with
others rather than indirectly,
- when there are minimum rules, and
- when emotional involvement with
details irrelevant to winning will distract low-Machs.
• Likes to be the centre of attraction –
looks into the mirror frequently –
extravagant dreams - thinks he is
capable of many things
• A person with a grandiose sense of self-
importance, requires excessive
admiration, has a sense of entitlement,
and is arrogant – supervisors rate them
as worse leaders.
• E.g., an ORACLE Co executive
described that Co’s CEO Larry Ellison
as follows; “The difference between
God and Larry is that God does not
believe that he is Larry.”
• They tend to be selfish, treat others
as inferior, exploitative, think others
exist for their benefit.
Self-Esteem and Self-Monitoring
Self-concept is the people’s attempts
to understand themselves. The self
may be viewed as the personality
viewed from within.
Self-Esteem (SE) - Individuals’ degree of
liking or disliking themselves.-
people’s self perceived competence
• Self esteem is directly related to expectations of
success – high SEs believe they have the ability to
succeed at work. – take more risks at job, choose
unconventional jobs. High SEs are more satisfied
with their jobs.
• Low SEs are more susceptible to external
influences- depend on positive evaluation from
others – seek approval from others, conform to
beliefs and behaviours of those they respect –
concerned with pleasing others. They compliment
individuals who give them positive feedback and
cut down those who give negative feedback.
• High esteem can be a good thing, but only if it is
nurtured and channeled in constructive and ethical
ways. Otherwise it can become antisocial and
destructive. Others may treat it as boasting as
egotistical. OBSE, Organisation Based Self Esteem is
“the self-perceived value that individuals have of
themselves as organisation members acting within
an organisation context.” people with high OBSE
view themselves positively. And a meta analysis
found significant positive relationship with
performance and satisfaction on the job.
• Individuals high in self monitoring show adaptability
– highly sensitive to external cues- can present
contradictions between their public persona and
private self. Low self monitors cannot disguise-
display their true dispositions and attitudes – high
behavioural consistency .
A personality trait that measures an individuals ability
to adjust his or her behavior to external, situational
factors. It is the extent to which people base their
behaviour on cues from other people and situations.
• High self monitors pay more
attention the behaviour of others
and can conform more easily – more
mobile in their careers, receive more
promotions and occupy central
positions needing to play multiple
and contradictory roles.
• High Risk-taking Managers
– Make quicker decisions
– Use less information to make decisions
– Operate in smaller and more entrepreneurial organizations
• Low Risk-taking Managers
– Are slower to make decisions
– Require more information before making decisions
– Exist in larger organizations with stable environments
• Risk Propensity
– Aligning managers’ risk-taking propensity to job
requirements should be beneficial to organizations.
Type A personality
• Aggressive involvement in a chronic, incessant
struggle to achieve more and more in less and less
time, and, if necessary, against the opposing
efforts of other things or other people.
• Type A’s are
- always moving, walking, and eating rapidly,
sense of time urgency – “hurry sickness”
- feel impatient with the rate at which most
events take place
- Status insecurity (feeling unsure of oneself
deep down inside)
- strive to think or do 2 or more things at a
- cannot cope with leisure time
- obsessed with numbers, measuring their
success in terms of how many or how much of
everything they acquire.
- aggression and hostility in response to
frustration and conflict
- a quest for achievement.
Has been referred to coronary-prone behaviour
‘Rarely harried by he desire to obtain a widely
increasing number of things or participate in an
endless growing series of events in an ever increasing
amount of time.”
- never suffer from a sense of time urgency with its
- feel no need to display or discuss either their
achievements or accomplishments unless such
exposure is demanded by the situation;
- play for fun and relaxation, rather than to exhibit
their superiority at any cost;
- can relax without guilt
- less coronary-prone
As operate under moderate to high stress levels –
work under continuous time pressure, a life of
deadlines – fast workers, competitiveness in long
hrs, frequently make poor decisions – rarely
creative because of concern with quantity and
speed, rely on past experiences when faced with
problems – easier to predict – do better at job
interviews – type Bs make it to the top. Type As
are in sales, Bs in senior positions – promotions
go to those who are wise, tactful and creative
than to the hasty , hostile and merely agile.
Identifies opportunities, shows initiative, takes
action, and perseveres until meaningful change
Creates positive change in the environment,
regardless or even in spite of constraints or
Achieving Person-Job Fit
Personality-Job Fit Theory
Identifies six personality
types and proposes that
the fit between personality
type and occupational
satisfaction and turnover.
Emotions- Why Emotions Were
Ignored in OB
• The “myth of rationality”
– Organizations are not emotion-free.
• Emotions of any kind are disruptive to
– Original OB focus was solely on the effects of
strong negative emotions that interfered with
individual and organizational efficiency.
What Are Emotions? (cont’d)
A situation in which an employee expresses
organizationally desired emotions during
A situation in which an employee
must project one emotion while simultaneously
Felt versus Displayed Emotions
An individual’s actual emotions.
Emotions that are organizationally required and
considered appropriate in a given job.
• Variety of emotions
• Intensity of emotions
– Job Requirements
• Frequency and duration of emotions
– How often emotions are exhibited.
– How long emotions are displayed.
Gender and Emotions
– Can show greater emotional expression.
– Experience emotions more intensely.
– Display emotions more frequently.
– Are more comfortable in expressing emotions.
– Are better at reading others’ emotions.
– Believe that displaying emotions is inconsistent with the male
– Are innately less able to read and to identify with others’
– Have less need to seek social approval by showing positive
Affective Events Theory (AET)
• Emotions are negative or positive responses to a work environment event.
– Personality and mood determine the intensity of the emotional
– Emotions can influence a broad range of work performance and job
• Implications of the theory:
– Individual response reflects emotions and mood cycles.
– Current and past emotions affect job satisfaction.
– Emotional fluctuations create variations in job satisfaction.
– Emotions have only short-term effects on job performance.
– Both negative and positive emotions can distract workers and reduce
OB Applications of Understanding
• Ability and Selection
– Emotions affect employee effectiveness.
• Decision Making
– Emotions are an important part of the decision-
making process in organizations.
– Emotional commitment to work and high motivation
are strongly linked.
– Emotions are important to acceptance of messages
from organizational leaders.
OB Applications… (cont’d)
• Interpersonal Conflict
– Conflict in the workplace and individual emotions are
• Customer Services
– Emotions affect service quality delivered to customers
which, in turn, affects customer relationships.
• Deviant Workplace Behaviors
– Negative emotions lead to employee deviance (actions
that violate norms and threaten the organization).
• Productivity failures
• Property theft and destruction
• Political actions
• Personal aggression
Ability and Selection
• Emotional Intelligence (EI)
– Social skills
• Research Findings
– High EI scores, not high IQ
scores, characterize high
An assortment of
influence a person’s
ability to succeed in
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