Dark personality traits and the use of sources of guidance at work: a comparison between the United States and Brazil
Keywords:Sources of guidance, Dark personality traits, Organizational behavior, Cross-cultural research
Purpose: The objective of this research was to statistically test significant correlations between dark personality traits and employee’s use of sources of guidance when dealing with different events at work, comparing the United States and Brazil.
Methodology: 220 employees from a Brazilian university and 166 employees from an American university filled out a paper-and-pencil questionnaire comprised of two previously-validated scales. Based on the theoretical review about the constructs, 10 hypotheses were raised to be empirically tested through Pearson correlation (r) tests.
Findings: The dark personality trait Machiavellianism was positively correlated with the use of Informal Rules and negatively correlated with the use of Formal Rules and Procedures as a guidance source at work in the American sample. In addition, the dark personality trait Psychopathy was negatively correlated with the use of Formal Rules and Procedures as a guidance source at work in the Brazilian sample.
Practical implications: The findings have implications for administrators and human resource professionals, who can benefit from knowledge about correlations between dark personality traits and employee’s attitude of relying on sources of guidance at work, especially when it comes to recruiting and selecting processes.
Limitations: Although the research was restricted to correlations, it elaborated a robust ground for causality investigations.
Originality: The investigation involved two countries with a cross-cultural approach. In an international and multicultural scenario, it becomes strategic to deeper investigate specificities of work-related constructs in different nations, aiming at effective and contextualized management practices.
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