Higher-order Traits and Happiness in the Workplace: The Importance of Occupational Project Scale for the Evaluation of Characteristic Adaptations

J Gen Psychol. 2017 Oct-Dec;144(4):245-263. doi: 10.1080/00221309.2017.1374117. Epub 2017 Oct 5.


This study attempts to explain the relationship between job satisfaction and the Big Two, Stability and Plasticity, which are the higher-order traits of Big Five. Occupational Project, a narrative construct, was considered a mediator variable in this relationship. Occupational Project consists of affective and cognitive evaluations of an individual's work life as a project in terms of the completed (past), the ongoing (present) and the prospective (future) parts. The survey method was applied to a sample of 253 participants. The results supported the proposed model, in which Occupational Project mediated the relationship between the Big Two and both job satisfaction and affect in workplace. Discussion is focused on applying Occupational Project as a practical tool for management. Consideration of an employee's Occupational Project could provide management with a means to question, understand, intervene with and redefine the narrative quality of his/her occupational project that influences job satisfaction.

Keywords: Characteristic adaptations; narrative identity; performance indices; personality.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological / physiology
  • Adult
  • Emotions / physiology
  • Female
  • Happiness*
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction*
  • Male
  • Models, Psychological
  • Personality / physiology*
  • Workplace / psychology*