ADAPTABILITY TO CHANGING TASK CONTEXTS: EFFECTS OF GENERAL COGNITIVE ABILITY, CONSCIENTIOUSNESS, AND OPENNESS TO EXPERIENCE

ADAPTABILITY TO CHANGING TASK CONTEXTS: EFFECTS OF GENERAL COGNITIVE ABILITY, CONSCIENTIOUSNESS,... We examined the extent to which cognitive ability, Conscientiousness, and Openness to Experience predict decision‐making performance prior to and after unforeseen changes in the task context. Seventy‐three undergraduates made decisions on a series of 75 problems during a 3‐hour computerized simulation. Unbeknownst to participants, the rules used in determining correct decisions changed after problems 25 and 50. Effects of the individual differences on decision‐making performance became significantly stronger after the changes. Only cognitive ability explained variance in prechange performance. Individuals with higher cognitive ability made better decisions. After the change, the cognitive ability effect increased and the effects of Conscientiousness and Openness became statistically significant. As expected, those with high Openness made better decisions. Unexpectedly, those with low Conscientiousness made better decisions. Subsequent analyses revealed that this surprising effect for Conscientiousness was due to the traits reflecting dependability (i.e., order, dutiful‐ness, deliberation) rather than volition (i.e., competence, achievement striving, self‐discipline). http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Personnel Psychology Wiley

ADAPTABILITY TO CHANGING TASK CONTEXTS: EFFECTS OF GENERAL COGNITIVE ABILITY, CONSCIENTIOUSNESS, AND OPENNESS TO EXPERIENCE

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
ISSN
0031-5826
eISSN
1744-6570
DOI
10.1111/j.1744-6570.2000.tb00214.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

We examined the extent to which cognitive ability, Conscientiousness, and Openness to Experience predict decision‐making performance prior to and after unforeseen changes in the task context. Seventy‐three undergraduates made decisions on a series of 75 problems during a 3‐hour computerized simulation. Unbeknownst to participants, the rules used in determining correct decisions changed after problems 25 and 50. Effects of the individual differences on decision‐making performance became significantly stronger after the changes. Only cognitive ability explained variance in prechange performance. Individuals with higher cognitive ability made better decisions. After the change, the cognitive ability effect increased and the effects of Conscientiousness and Openness became statistically significant. As expected, those with high Openness made better decisions. Unexpectedly, those with low Conscientiousness made better decisions. Subsequent analyses revealed that this surprising effect for Conscientiousness was due to the traits reflecting dependability (i.e., order, dutiful‐ness, deliberation) rather than volition (i.e., competence, achievement striving, self‐discipline).

Journal

Personnel PsychologyWiley

Published: Sep 1, 2000

References

  • Personality and job performance: The importance of narrow traits
    Ashton, Ashton
  • The Big Five personality dimensions and job performance: A meta‐analysis
    Barrick, Barrick; Mount, Mount
  • Narrow reasoning about the use of broad personality measures for personnel selection
    Paunonen, Paunonen; Rothstein, Rothstein; Jackson, Jackson
  • Organizations of the future
    Offermann, Offermann; Gowing, Gowing
  • Predicting training success: Not much more than g.
    Ree, Ree; Earles, Earles
  • Broadsided by broad traits: How to sink science in five dimensions or less
    Schneider, Schneider; Hough, Hough; Dunnette, Dunnette
  • Personality measures as predictors of job performance: A meta‐analytic review
    Tett, Tett; Jackson, Jackson; Rothstein, Rothstein

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