Relations between personality, work performance and stress in an occupational setting
Cross - Sectional and Longitudinal - Analyses were carried out to establish the
relations between measures of personality and the effectiveness, effort and
efficiency associated with work production in an insurance brokerage. Measures of
subjective stress, work stressors and strains together with motivational factors of
Goal Setting and Goal Commitment were assessedin relation to the above.
Relations between Trait Anxiety (TA), effort, production and efficiency were
tested. Higher TA was associated with higher effort and production but TA was
unrelated to efficiency. This was contrary to the prediction of the Processing
Efficiency Theory (Eysenck, 1979). Inclusion of additional personality factors:
Type A Behaviour Pattern (TABP), Locus of Control (LOC) and the Marlowe -
Crowne Social Desirability (SD) also confirmed the original findings that TA was
positively related to effort and productivity but not efficiency. TA was related to
stress in both studies.
TABP and LOC were unrelated to effort, work production and efficiency. TA and
TABP were associated with all the three measures of subjective stress, work
stressors and strains, LOC was associated with work stressors and strains while the
interaction of TA and SD was associated with subjective stress and work stressors.
Similar analyses were carried out to discover relations between personality and
change in performance occurring between October and November after removing
variance in baseline (October) performance. TA was positively related to the
increase in effort, effectiveness and perceived stress from October to November.
Inclusion of motivational factors revealed that Goal Commitment was related to
effectiveness and efficiency. Goal Setting was not significantly related to
effectiveness, effort and efficiency when baseline performance was taken into
account. TABP was positively related to Goal Commitment whilst TA was
positively related to Goal Setting