Creativity at work as a joint function between openness to experience, need for cognition and organizational fairness

Hector P. Madrid, Malcolm G. Patterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examines how cognitive personality traits and organizational context interact to predict creativity at work. Drawing on a trait interaction model, we propose novel idea generation as resulting from the interaction between openness to experience and need for cognition, because the first facilitates expressive intellect, while the second leads to controlled intellect. Furthermore, we propose novel idea implementation as a joint function between openness to experience, need for cognition and organizational fairness. This three-way interaction relies on social-exchange and trait activation theories, highlighting that the translation of novel thoughts into implementation depends on contextual activation of individual dispositions. This was supported in a survey study based on a sample of 220 full time employees from diverse organizations. These findings expand theory on personality and creativity, informing work psychologists about how to identify employees with creative potential and how to manage the workplace to foster this potential.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-416
Number of pages8
JournalLearning and Individual Differences
Volume51
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2016

Keywords

  • Creativity at work
  • Need for cognition
  • Openness to experience
  • Organizational fairness

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