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Title: The role of personality composition on team creativity and innovation
Author: Mutlu, Mustafa Doruk
ISNI:       0000 0004 6495 0910
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2017
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There is a growing interest in the literature on personality composition at work and its role in teamwork. The investigations undertaken, mainly focus on combinations of personality traits and their impact on general team performance. However, the influence of personality composition on creative and innovative performance of teams is not well covered within the literature. Thus, this research aims to investigate the role of personality composition on team creativity and innovation. This thesis consists of two separate studies, both of which mainly examine the influence of personality composition – average levels and variability within teams – on team creativity and innovation. The first study focuses on the direct relationship between “big five” personality traits (openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism) and the creative performance of student teams in both short and longer period of time, addressing the research question, how does student team personality composition relate to the creative performance of a student team? The second study, on the other hand, examines the interplay between personality traits (not only the Big Five, but also the Dark Triad that includes Machiavellianism, narcissism and psychopathy), team processes and team innovation in a knowledge intensive R&D context. Stated briefly, organizations operating in a knowledge intensive context are different in many ways from traditional firms and employ knowledge workers who are highly educated and well-qualified experts. These workers are responsible for innovative outcome through working in teams (Newell, Robertson, Scarbrough and Swan, 2009). The research questions of this study are, how does knowledge worker team personality composition relate to the innovative performance of a knowledge worker team? and to what extent is the relationship between personality traits and innovative performance of a knowledge worker team explained (mediated) by innovation related group processes? An Input-Process-Output (IPO) model of team innovation is the main theoretical framework that is used to conceptualize the relationship between inputs (big five personality traits) and outputs (student team creative performance) in study 1. Additively, the same framework used to conceptualize inputs (Big Five and Dark Triad personality traits), processes (innovation related team processes) and output (knowledge worker team innovative performance) in the second study (Hulsheger, Anderson and Salgado, 2009). For instance, within the second study, if mean level conscientiousness is high in a particular knowledge worker team it can be expected that the team is task oriented and therefore innovative. Data for the Study 1 was gathered from undergraduate students operating in teams while Study 2 was conducted with knowledge workers working in teams; both studies used quantitative methods, specifically questionnaires. Creative and innovative team performance were assessed by external judges (the module leader in study 1, and managers in study 2). The results do not indicate any significant relationship between team creativity and innovation in either study. However, there are considerable associations particularly between personality traits and innovation related team processes in the latter study, and the findings are discussed within the thesis. It is believed that the theoretical findings of this study will help researchers to build further on understanding the relationship between team personality composition, creativity and innovation. In addition, the practical implications will help decision makers to select appropriate group members to foster creativity and innovation within teams.
Supervisor: Dawson, Jeremy ; Birdi, Kamaljit Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available