Original Research

The indirect relationship between personality and performance through job crafting behaviour

Sergio L. Peral, Madelyn Geldenhuys
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 46 | a1715 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v46i0.1715 | © 2020 Sergio L. Peral, Madelyn Geldenhuys | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 July 2019 | Published: 05 March 2020

About the author(s)

Sergio L. Peral, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park, South Africa
Madelyn Geldenhuys, Department of Industrial Psychology and People Management, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park, South Africa


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Abstract

Orientation: Individual personality is known to have a direct impact on job performance. Yet, little is known about the behavioural processes through which personality unfolds and ultimately affects employee performance.

Research purpose: This study set out to investigate the indirect relationship between personality and performance through job crafting behaviour. Job crafting, the proactive changes employees make to their task, relational and cognitive job boundaries, has been shown to relate to a number of positive employee and organisational outcomes.

Motivation for the study: Individual differences, such as personality, affect the manner in which employees approach their work, be it in the tasks they complete or the relationships that they build with others. It is thus imperative to understand how unique personality traits have an impact on important business outcomes such as job performance.

Research approach/design and method: A quantitative cross-sectional research design was conducted amongst a sample of South African working individuals (N = 580). Structural equation modelling (SEM) was the primary statistical technique used to investigate the research hypotheses.

Main findings: The study results showed that the ‘Big Five’ personality traits indirectly influenced job performance (i.e. in-role behaviour, organisational citizenship behaviour) through job crafting as a mediator.

Practical/managerial implications: Organisations who take the initiative to truly understand their employees and their unique personalities have a greater chance of leveraging valuable employee and business outcomes such as job crafting and job performance. Incorporating valid and reliable personality measures in an organisation’s recruitment and selection process may thus prove beneficial in predicting proactive work behaviours and overall employee performance.

Contribution/value-add: This study contributes to the limited knowledge surrounding the individual antecedents of job crafting behaviour and further shows how one’s predisposition (i.e. personality) can have an indirect impact on performance through the behaviours employees engage in, such as job crafting.


Keywords

Big Five; Five-Factor Model; job crafting; in-role behaviour; organisational citizenship behaviour.

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