Case Study – Personality and Virgin Group
Whatever the industry, a company will always consist of an association of two or more individuals working towards a certain global goal; the actions of each individual will contribute to the general welfare of his company and of others around him. So, for a manager, it is important to single out the individuals whose behaviours better fit those of the company, its objectives and the job positions they are to fulfill – much following the preparation principle of Frederick Taylor’s Scientific Management approach. Personality is a cluster of inherit and socially acquired traits that distinguishes an individual by influencing its behaviour, attitudes and emotions. Thusly, it is crucial that a manager has different tools in order to assess its employees’ personality. Tests – like Rorschach Inkblot Test and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator –, interviews and roleplaying are some of the innumerous dimensions of analysis that can be used to predict and observe an individual’s reaction to a set of controlled stimuli. Each company looks for the set of personality traits that best suit their needs and business. Virgin Group strives to continue to improve its multifaceted business and maintain its worldwide reputation of high consumer engagement. Why, then, should there be so much focus on “finding the best people to run the diverse businesses in the Virgin Group”? Traits like openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism (Big 5), individually balanced adequately to fill the optimal profile for the employer and the company itself, have been known to have a positive correlation with job performance. Richard Branson, the CEO of Virgin, shifts the paradigm of “consumers and shareholders first” to a chief focus on employees which, he believes, are the core agents for profit generating. Branson’s personality already exhibits some of the key characteristics of this organization: he “will do almost...
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