Kill chaos with kindness: agreeableness improves team performance under uncertainty

Lim, S-L, Bentley, P J, Peterson, R S, Hu, X and McLaren, J P (2023) Kill chaos with kindness: agreeableness improves team performance under uncertainty. Collective Intelligence. ISSN 2633-9137 (In Press) OPEN ACCESS

Abstract

Teams are central to human accomplishment. Over the past half-century, psychologists have identified the Big-Five cross-culturally valid personality variables: Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness, Conscientiousness, and Agreeableness. The first four have shown consistent relationships with team performance. Agreeableness (being harmonious, altruistic, humble, and cooperative), however, has demonstrated a non-significant and highly variable relationship with team performance. We resolve this inconsistency through computational modelling. An agent-based model (ABM) is used to predict the effects of personality traits on teamwork, and a genetic algorithm is then used to explore the limits of the ABM in order to discover which traits correlate with best and worst performing teams for a problem with different levels of uncertainty (noise). New dependencies revealed by the exploration are corroborated by analyzing previously unseen data from one of the largest datasets on team performance to date comprising 3698 individuals in 593 teams working on more than 5000 group tasks with and without uncertainty, collected over a 10-year period. Our finding is that the dependency between team performance and Agreeableness is moderated by task uncertainty. Combining evolutionary computation with ABMs in this way provides a new methodology for the scientific investigation of teamwork, making new predictions, and improving our understanding of human behaviors. Our results confirm the potential usefulness of computer modelling for developing theory, as well as shedding light on the future of teams as work environments are becoming increasingly fluid and uncertain.

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Item Type: Article
Subject Areas: Organisational Behaviour
Additional Information:

This is a copy of the following paper which has been accepted for publication in Collective Intelligence:Lim, S-L, Peterson, R S, Bentley, P J, Hu, X and McLaren, J P (2023) Kill chaos with kindness: agreeableness improves team performance under uncertainty. Collective Intelligence. ISSN 2633-9137 Copyright © 2023 SAGE Publications. DOI: 10.1177/26339137231158584.

Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2023 11:55
Date of first compliant deposit: 10 Feb 2023
Subjects: Team management
Psychology
Personality (Psychology)
Simulation models
Last Modified: 19 Jun 2024 01:33
URI: https://lbsresearch.london.edu/id/eprint/2780
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