Companies are consistently looking for more efficient and effective ways to identify high-potential applicants in an effort to cut recruitment costs, lower employee attrition, and boost productivity. But equally important to these efforts is weeding out applicants with traits not conducive to providing high-quality service or high-quality work.
While some traits are favorable in employees, others can wreak havoc on the productivity and morale of your workforce.
Today, we are recapping research focused on how employers have begun to attempt to screen out candidates who are at risk of demonstrating counterproductive work behaviors.
In his study, “Conditional Reasoning Test for Aggression: Further evidence about incremental validity,” Zvonimir Galić examines whether or not the Conditional Reasoning Test for Aggression accurately demonstrates the ability to predict three different trait factors, including the Dark Triad traits, the HEXACO traits, and the trait self-control.
Can You Find Counterproductive Workplace Behaviors During the Talent Acquisition Process?
The Conditional Reasoning Test for Aggression (CRT-A) is designed specifically to identify applicants that have negative aggression traits, which can transition into Counterproductive Work Behaviors (CWBs). This comprehensive research study was done to determine if in fact there is a correlation between the CRT-A and CWBs.
Study 1: Dark Triad Traits
The first study was performed to determine if the conditional reasoning test could accurately detect Dark Triad traits, including Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy. All three of these traits have a direct link to prime CWBs, such as aggressiveness and disagreeableness. If the test can accurately detect these traits, it could prove to be effective at identifying potentially problematic employees.
The test evaluated 133 students from a Croatian campus. Each student was asked to complete a 25 question multiple-choice test. Three of these questions were regular inductive reasoning problems, with only one correct answer. The remaining 22 questions were specific conditional reasoning for questions, with one social accepted answer, one logically aggressive answer, and two illogical answers. Students with five or more illogical answers were omitted from the study.
The results of the study showed that the CRT-A was not able to detect the three Dark Triad traits. However, it was a very effective predictor of CWBs, which could signal aggressive behavior.
Study 2: HEXACO Traits
The second study focused on identifying HEXACO personality traits, including honesty-humility, emotionality, eXtraversion, agreeability, conscientiousness, and openness. Of these traits, the honesty-humility factor seems to have the greatest potential for identifying CWBs. This study was done to test the correlation between the CRT-A and CWBs in an effort to identify respondents that have a tendency for poor behavior.
One hundred students from a Croatian business school participated in the study. An adaption of the multiple-choice questionnaire from Study 1 was used, along with the 100-item HEXACO-PI-R test, and the 58-item Comprehensive Misconduct Inventory. Participants were evaluated in all three areas and all respondents with more than four illogical answers were omitted from the results.
The study's results showed little to no significant outcomes pertaining to the relationship between the HEXACO traits and CWBs. The strongest CWBs indicator was identifying the emotionality trait. However, this percentage was so small that further research would be necessary to determine whether the CRT-A is an accurate identifier or not.
Study 3: Trait Self-Control
The final study was completed to determine if there was a correlation between the CRT-A and the trait self-control. This is an important study because some professionals believe that lack of self-control is one of the prime factors for identifying those who are likely to have deviant behaviors. Respondents with high levels are self-control are likely to perform at a higher level, maintain better interpersonal relationships, and have less impulse control issues.
The study evaluated 353 participants, all whom worked consecutively at least 20 hours per week, for a minimum of six months. All participants completed the same multiple-choice test used in Study 1, as well as a 36-item self-reporting questionnaire that rated various personality traits on a five-point scale and an addition self-reporting questionnaire that used a seven-point scale to rate behaviors over the past year. Respondents that gave more than four illogical answers were omitted from the results.
The first result to be evaluated was whether participants would accurately complete the self-report questionnaires. Results showed most respondents were willing to admit to some types of deviant behaviors. The study also showed a correlation between CRT-A and self-reported organizational and interpersonal deviance.
The study determined more research regarding the effectiveness of the CRT-A and its ability to predict ideal candidates accurately for the talent selection process is needed.
One major obstacle is the fact that the CRT-A is longer and more cumbersome than most of the other tests used in the talent acquisition process. It is still up for debate as to whether the CRT-A can provide accurate and useful data for predicting CWBs, such as aggression, that the other available tests do not already provide.
Topics: Short and Scholarly