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4Personality, Motivation, and Work Performance


Personality, Motivation, and Work Performance


The Big Five Model of personality is a psychological model of determining an individual’s personality traits. This model of personality entails five general aspects that are geared towards determining an individual’s personality traits. The model is based on common language indicators of someone’s personality. In this way, the indicators are banded together to produce the most likely and accurate traits that an individual has. The model constitutes five scopes that at are employed in the description of a person’s personality. These aspects include; conscientiousness, agreeableness, openness, extraversion, and neuroticism (Judge et al., 2002). This essay uses results from the big five model of personality for critical reflection on the role of individual differences in management practices and organizational behavior outcomes. After undertaking and completing the Big Five measure, the scores are going to be used in addition to relevant personal experience, theory and concepts to evaluate strengths and weaknesses. The essay through the test score is also going to evaluate motivation and work performance and how these two are affected by individual personality. Finally, consideration will be given to how this knowledge can help in improving work performance and motivation in future.

My Big Five Results

Looking at the results of my Big Five Model test, I am someone who is not very open to new experiences. The test score in the Openness to experience and intellect category is 47% which is typically low. The model’s explanation in this category is that people who score high in this category tend to be original, curious, creative, and complex. On the other hand, low scorers tend to reserved, conventional, uncreative, down-to-earth and have limited or narrow interests. In this way, I am someone who characteristically does not seek out novel or new experiences.

In conscientiousness, people who score high are well organized, reliable, careful and possess a great amount of self-discipline while low scorers are often disorganized, negligent, and undependable. My score in this category is 74, which denotes that I am a well-organized, reliable and possess self-discipline.

My extraversion score is 48. High scorers in this category tend to be sociable, friendly, and outgoing people and low scorers are often introverted, inhibited, quiet, and reserved. The results indicate that I am neither particularly social nor reserved. This means that I balance the two extremes of either being social or being reserved.

In agreeableness, I scored 74, which means that I am someone who considers the feelings of others. High scorers in this category are noted as good-natured people, forgiving, sympathetic and courteous while people who score low are often harsh, critical and rude.

My score in neuroticism is 22%, which is a low score. Low scorers are noted to be calm, secure, relaxed and hardy while high scorers are high-strung people, nervous and constantly worrying people.

Strengths and weaknesses


One of my strengths is that I am Conscientious meaning I am well organized, careful, reliable and have self-discipline.

I am neither social nor reserved. I can be friendly, outgoing, and sociable at times and I can be introverted, quiet, and inhibited. This can be both a strength and a weakness depending on the situation.

I am agreeable which means that in addition to considering the feelings of others, I am forgiving, good-natured, sympathetic, and courteous.

I am not neurotic meaning I am calm, relaxed, secure and hardy.


Not open to new experiences which indicates being reserved, uncreative, narrow interests and conventional.

I am neither social nor reserved. I can be friendly, outgoing, and sociable at times and I can be introverted, quiet, and inhibited. This can be both a strength and a weakness depending on the situation



Conscientious meaning I am well organized, careful, reliable and have self-discipline

Not open to new experiences which indicates being reserved, uncreative, narrow interests and conventional.

I am neither social nor reserved. I can be friendly, outgoing, and sociable at times and I can be introverted, quiet and inhibited. This can be both a strength and a weakness depending on the situation

I am neither social nor reserved. I can be friendly, outgoing, and sociable at times and I can be introverted, quiet and inhibited. This can be both a strength and a weakness depending on the situation

I am agreeable which means that in addition to considering the feelings of others, I am forgiving, good-natured, sympathetic, and courteous.

I am not neurotic meaning I am calm, relaxed, secure and hardy

How Motivation and Work Performance is Affected by Personality

Individuals in the work environment have a personality that is unique to them. According to McShane and Von Glinow (2015), a person’s personality has considerable influence on various aspects in the work place key among these aspect being motivation and work performance. In essence, an individual’s personality directly affects their levels of motivation and the performance output at work. These traits are often reflected in the individual’s attitudes towards their work. In this way, I am going to evaluate the effect my personality has on my motivation and work performance based on the big five model and the score results of the test. In doing so, it is easy to denote the various traits that affect motivation and performance and determine any action that needs to be taken for future success.

As a conscientious individual, I am well organized and reliable among other attributes relevant to the category. Reliability is one of the factors that affect my work performance in the positive. Reliable people are generally able to deliver on their assigned roles and responsibilities. They can be counted on to complete an assigned task and deliver the desired outcomes. Good organizational skills as a trait are inclusively important in work performance and motivation. Judge and Ilies (2002) explain that a well-organized person is motivated towards their work since things around them do not distract them. Such individuals are well focused and can achieve high levels of success including the successful completion of tasks. Looking at the test results, it is evident that on top of reliability and good organization skills, I am also someone who is careful and has self-discipline. These attributes affect the way I approach my work and the results I deliver. For instance, I am someone who has to weigh various aspects as related to my work. I take time to carefully consider the things I am supposed to do and how best I can achieve them. After careful consideration, I carefully plan and execute my tasks to completion. Evaluating the attributes associated with conscientiousness, it is evident that my personality has a lot of influence in the attitudes I have towards my work and performance in addition to factors that motivate me to work. According to Miner (2015), conscientious individuals are self-disciplined, an aspect that motivates them to carry out their obligations to the very end.

An individual’s openness determines how motivated they are and the manner in which they person. Open people embrace challenges and new ideas. They are motivated by a work environment that gives a chance to express themselves. Such people are often very creative and often come up with new and innovative ideas they are willing to implement in achieving their work goals. The open individual has a high level of intellectual curiosity and are bored by mundane and routing tasks (Barrick et al., 2002). My score in the Big Five personality test indicated that I rank low in openness. This affects my motivation and work performance since often I am comfortable with routine tasks that I can understand and perform. I have a conventional approach to how I do my work and prefer a grounded familiar approach. Noting this, I can see how this affects my performance since I am mostly able to perform on tasks that I am familiar with and tend to shy away from new experiences in the workplace.

Extraversion is one of the most vital personality traits that affect motivation. Extraverted individuals are sociable, have high amounts of energy, and are good at co-operating at work (Bowditch et al., 2007). My personality in this respect is a balance between being social and being reserved. This affects my motivation in the sense that I go with how I am feeling in a particular situation or when faced with a particular challenge at work. Sometimes I look forward to working with others in completing a task and sometimes I prefer to do my work on my own with minimal interaction. Being able to balance the two aspects off extraversion means that I can deliver in whichever situation, whether the situation calls for me to be sociable and outgoing and cooperative and when the situation demands that I do my work in a reserved manner with minimal cooperation and friendliness.

Agreeable people often give priority to the feelings of others. In the work place Barrick et al. (2004) notes, that such individuals are not only a motivation to themselves but to other personnel at work. They are able to forgive and communicate in a respectful manner. The environment at work, motivation, and performance is majorly affected by the level of agreeableness someone has. By treating others with respect, Tett and Burnett (2003) state that agreeable people get the same level of respect from colleagues, which makes them motivated towards their work and positively contributes towards their performance. As an agreeable person, I am able to work with other in a peaceful manner limiting instances of conflict and strife. I am able to communicate and point out any disagreements in a respectful manner, which makes my work easier.

Neuroticism refers to individual vulnerability to difficult situations. Work performance and motivation are influence by a person’s level of neuroticism. People who are neurotic often react or respond negatively to situations that are characterized by stress, anxiety, anger, and conflict. It is important to note that in any work environment, unpleasant situations arise periodically owing to the fact the work environment is filled with individuals with various personalities. Furnham et al. (2009) observes that neurotic people often have negative work performance, as they are vulnerable to everyday situations that occur in the workplace. As someone who scores very low in neuroticism, I am resilient and able to respond well to most situations that occur during my work. I am often able to remain calm and weigh the situation at hand before embarking on a solution. My ability to stay calm constitutes to my work performance since unpleasant situations do not deter me from what I am supposed to achieve. Neuroticism is sometimes referred to as the emotional stability of an individual. Emotionally stable people are able to stay on course and perform to the best of their ability since issues do not easily destabilize them (Pinder, 2014). In evaluating the attributes connected to a lack of neuroticism, I can say that in most situations during work, I am able to stay motivated, focused, and resilient enough to complete my obligations.

Improving Motivation and Work Performance in Future

The results of the Big Five personality test are important since they can be useful for individual improvement in motivation and work performance. In my case, one of the weak areas of my personality is based on the fact that I am not an open person. However, knowing this now, I can institute measures and strategies that will help me improve in this sector. Lack of openness denotes narrow interests, being reserved, uncreative and conventional. In improving my motivation, I will consciously seek out new challenges and direct my efforts into completing a new challenge every week. With practice comes perfection and by completing different challenges every week, I will be able to become more open to newer things. Additionally, I will try to expand my scope of interests to include areas of work that I have never given much thought to. This will mean exposing myself to various areas of work and trying out different assignment in addition to picking up new interests out of work. I believe this will contribute positively to my development and help me to become a more creative person. Apart from expanding my scope of interests, I will also endeavor to look for newer ways of doing the tasks I have been doing in order to build creativity and innovation.


The big five model of personality is an important tool in determining the traits that someone has and how these traits affect their motivation and work performance. By completing the test and obtaining my results, I have been able to find out the different strengths and weaknesses in my personality in addition to evaluating how these affect my motivation and work performance. Additional research has also enabled me to consider and comprehend how these factors contribute to my performance. The evaluation of personality, the various attributes of personality, strengths, and weaknesses has also enabled me to note the areas that need change. This helps in narrowing the focus to the specific area that I would like to change so that I can improve positive influence towards motivation and work experience. The significance of the exercise is tied to the future aspect of work and improving the overall person that I am in order to continue giving good output.


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Barrick, M.R., Stewart, G.L. and Piotrowski, M., 2002. Personality and job performance: test of the mediating effects of motivation among sales representatives. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87(1), p.43.

Bowditch, J.L., Buono, A.F. and Stewart, M.M., 2007. A primer on organizational behavior. Wiley.

Furnham, A., Eracleous, A. and Chamorro-Premuzic, T., 2009. Personality, motivation and job satisfaction: Hertzberg meets the Big Five. Journal of managerial psychology, 24(8), pp.765-779.

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McShane, S.L. and Von Glinow, M.A., 2015. Organizational Behavior 7/e.

Miner, J.B., 2015. Organizational behavior 1: Essential theories of motivation and leadership. Routledge.

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Tett, R.P. and Burnett, D.D., 2003. A personality trait-based interactionist model of job performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 88(3), p.500.


Big Five Personality Test Results