What is Personality?
― Those relatively stable and enduring aspects of individuals which distinguish him/her from other people and at the same time form the basis of our predictions concerning his / her future behavior‖Wright et al., 1970)

• The sum total of ways in which an individual reacts and interacts with others. • The collection of psychological characteristics or traits that determines a person’s preferences and individual style of behavior.
- Personality refers to the stable underlying causes of individual behaviour (Cloninger 2004) - Personality denotes the relatively enduring traits or characteristics of a person (Ewen 1994) -Traits are usually observable (e.g. aggressiveness or shyness).

• Persona (Greek word) means mask • Personality (literally means) likeable mask • Origin of the word implies personality is the public self (our presentation of the self to the outside world)

•Pitfalls in assessing personality
– Making hasty judgments about personalities. – Having the tendency to see only behaviors that affirm judgments.

Determinants of Personality
•Nature (heredity)
– The assumption that part of personality is biologically- based and predetermined.

•Nurture (environment)
– The assumption that personality is shaped primarily by life experiences, especially those of early childhood. – Culture, family, group membership and life experiences.

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) A personality test that taps four characteristics and classifies people into 1 of 16 personality types.

Personality Types
• Extroverted vs. Introverted (E or I) • Sensing vs. Intuitive (S or N) • Thinking vs. Feeling (T or F) • Judging vs. Perceiving (P or J)

The Big Five Model of Personality Dimensions
Sociable, gregarious, and assertive

Good-natured, cooperative, and trusting.

Responsible, dependable, persistent, and organized.

Emotional Stability
Calm, self-confident, secure (positive) versus nervous, depressed, and insecure (negative).

Openness to Experience
Imaginativeness, artistic, sensitivity, and intellectualism.

Dimensions of personality and its relevance in work settings

• Locus of control

• Problem solving style
• Machiavellianism • Type A – Type B

Locus of Control
It measures the internal and external orientation of a person, that is the extent to which a person feels able to affect his or her life.

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.

Problem solving style
The way in which person goes about gathering information in solving problems and making decisions. •Styles of information gathering: Sensation to Intuitive •Styles of evaluation or making judgments:

Feeling to Thinking

– Based on the writings of Niccolo Machiavelli who advocated a psychologically detached and unemotional behavioral approach by individuals to organizational participation in meeting their personal objectives. – The belief that it is appropriate to behave in any manner that will meet one’s own needs.
• The primary focus is on obtaining and using power as a means to further one’s own ends, regardless of its impact on others.

Degree to which an individual is pragmatic, maintains emotional distance, and believes that ends can justify means.

Conditions Favoring High Machs • Direct interaction • Minimal rules and regulations • Emotions distract for others

Type A-Type B

•Self-esteem (self-concept)
– How individuals perceive themselves in terms of their abilities, competencies, and effectiveness.
Incapable Incompetent Insignificant Unworthy

Self Esteem

Capable Competent Significant Worthy

• 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.

Other Dimensions of Personality (cont’d)
•The ―Big Five‖ personality theory
– The view that all personality traits can be distilled into five big ones:
• • • • • Extroversion—outgoing/withdrawn Adjustment—flexible/rigid Agreeableness—cooperative/uncooperative Conscientiousness—thorough/sloppy Inquisitiveness—curious/disinterested

Achieving Person-Job Fit
Personality-Job Fit Theory (Holland) Identifies six personality types and proposes that the fit between personality type and occupational environment determines satisfaction and turnover.

Personality Types
• Realistic • Investigative

• Social
• Conventional • Enterprising

• Artistic


Theories of Personalities
• Type Theory :
Classified personalities on the basis of body structures( given by william sheldon) and on the basis of psychological factors (by Carl jung)

• Trait Theory:
The trait theory is a multiple model of type theory. rather than classifying a person by just one feature the trait theory classifies people’s personality by set of features. Cattell’s 16 PF Psychoanalytic Theory :

Theory of Personality given by Sigmund Freud which divides the mind into ID EGO and SUPER EGO SOCIAL LEARNING :

This theory focuses on behavior patterns and cognitive activities in relation to the specific conditions that evoke, maintain or modify them • SELF CONCEPT THEORY Carl Roger and Abraham Maslow stress a man’s positive nature,his push towards growth and self actualization

William Sheldon classified personality according to body type. He called this a person’s somatotype.

Sheldon's Somatotype





relaxed, sociable, tolerant, comfortloving, peaceful

plump, buxom, developed visceral structure


active, assertive, vigorous, combative



quiet, fragile, restrained, nonassertive, sensitive

lean, delicate, poor muscles

Extroverts vs. Introverts Extroverts are directed towards the objective world whereas Introverts are directed towards the subjective world. The most common differences between Extroverts and Introverts are shown below:

Extroverts • are interested in what is happening around them • are open and often talkative •compare their own opinions with the opinions of others • like action and initiative • easily make new friends or adapt to a new group • say what they think • are interested in new people • easily break unwanted relations

Introverts • are interested in their own thoughts and feelings • need to have own territory • often appear reserved, quiet and thoughtful • usually do not have many friends have difficulties in making new contacts • like concentration and quiet do not like unexpected visits and therefore do not make them
• work well alone

Personality Trait Theory
• Traits—tendencies to behave, think, or feel in certain ways in certain situations – collections of similar thoughts, feelings, and behaviors – traits are the constructs of personality • Traits are dimensional—a structure that recurs in the same qualitative form in different people, but at different quantitative levels (e.g., high or low on a trait)

Psychoanalytical Theory of Personality

• Freud’s perspective • Behavior is determined by – Irrational forces – Unconscious motivations – Biological and instinctual drives as they evolve through the six psychosexual stages of life

The Structure of Personality
• THE ID — The Demanding Child
– Ruled by the pleasure principle

• THE EGO — The Traffic Cop
– Ruled by the reality principle

• THE SUPEREGO — The Judge
– Ruled by the moral principle

Ego-Defense Mechanisms
• Ego-defense mechanisms: – Are normal behaviors which operate on an unconscious level and tend to deny or distort reality – Help the individual cope with anxiety and prevent the ego from being overwhelmed – Have adaptive value if they do not become a style of life to avoid facing reality

Defense Mechanisms
• To protect the ego against the painful and threatening impulses arising from the id we distort the reality • The processes that distort the reality for the ego are called defense mechanisms

Types of Defense Mechanisms
• • • • • • • • Repression Reaction Formation Denial Projection Displacement Sublimation Regression Rationalization


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