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Five Factor Model (FFM) of Personality

What is the reason why some leaders of the world are successful in their leadership while others are a failure? Is this because of the personality profile that they possess or they lack the desired qualities that could have made them successful? What is the success in leadership correlated with the Five Factors Model? These and many more will be discussed in the succeeding paragraphs. We will begin our discussion with the Five Factor Models and its relevance to leadership success.

What is Five Factor Model One of the sustained objectives of Psychology is to come up with a personality model that could well illustration the dynamics of human personality, and its deviations. Many models were made with the intention to under the dynamics of personality and dig dipper into the concept of human personality. Some have become popular while others are not. One of the famous models in psychology is the Five Factor Model (FFM). Five variables are integrated in this model to describe human personality. According to Ewen (1998), “These five different factors are often referred to as the “Big 5” (p. 140).

The five factors are extroversion- introversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness (p. 140). The Five Factor Model (FFM) is distinguished into two. According to Popkin (2008), The first one is the OCEAN Model of Costa and McCraen, “which is known for the acronyms of the five factors: openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. While the Big Five of Goldberg “prefers to name the factors according to their positive poles, and the order derived from the amount of variance each explains”.

The big five put emphasis on surgency, agreeableness, conscientiousness, emotional stability and intellect. According to Howard (2004), “each of the Big Five dimensions is like a bucket that holds a set of traits that tend to occur together”. The Big Five defined the above defined factors of: extroversion-introversion, neuroticism, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness. According to Howard (2004), “Extraversion refers to the degree which a person can tolerate sensory stimulation from people and situations, while Stability (neuroticism) refers to the degree to which a person responds to stress.

Originality refers to the degree to which we are open to new experiences/new ways of doing things and lastly, accommodation, refers to the degree to which we defer to others”. A leader should be evaluated in terms of its effectiveness to lead a group of people or influence a group of people to change for the attainment of a goal and the personality profile a good leader affects his subordinates.

Among the qualities of good leaders are: SURGENCY – This is the fluency ability, being talkative and at ease in meeting people, with different personalities. These leaders are warm with people in terms of social relationship, having the capacity to deal with them comfortably. Surgency is an effective quality of a leader because he can relate his ideas with his subordinates, showing assertiveness in expressing his ideas and comfortableness in meeting diverse personalities. Based on observation, the effective leaders are those to can relate well their ideas, somebody who is fluent, assertive and adventurous, having a variety of interests. You cannot be an effective leader if you do not possess the quality of being comfortable with people, one who cannot express his thoughts well because it would be hard for someone to be understood, without communicating his ideas well.

DEPENDABILITY – Dependability means that you can be relied upon to perform your duties properly (“Marine,” 2008). A leader is someone who can be trusted to do a particular work assigned to him. His subordinates has a complete trust in him, that he will complete the work to the best way he can, living up to expectations of his subordinates.

Dependability also means the reliability of the leader that a goal will be reached no matter what it takes. People like leaders who are dependable because they could be trusted to accomplish a task. In times of need, a leader is someone who could be depended upon. A dependable leader is focused on his set goals, unlike those leaders who are scattered in too many directions, impulsive in their decisions, who could never be trusted to carry out their duties. AGREEABLENESS – a characteristic of being friendly, cooperative and understanding with others and having the capacity to get along with other people.

An agreeable person is someone who is considerate and friendly with others. He is concerned with the welfare of other people. An effective leader has a concern on the welfare or the goodness of his subordinates. Not just that he carries out his responsibility of being a leader, but he should also show his concern and involvement in his subordinates. As said by one author, “The agreeable profile are friendly and outgoing in terms of personality profile, they are “tolerant and accepting of others”. (Howard 2004) People want leaders who has a concern for them.

Why did Hitler fail in his governance, it could be because he is not agreeable leader, in fact, he ordered the killing of the Jews in his time. His decisions maybe are detestable and inhuman, thus, was unfavorable to the Jews. He is hostile. An agreeable leader is effective because he can be approached by his subordinates, showing warmness while being with people, having the ability to understand others. ADJUSTMENT – capacity to adapt to the situation, the ability to be flexible with other people and the circumstance in life.

An effective leader can adjust to whatever situation where he is in at the moment, having the ability to handle stress and pressure from the external environment. Moreover, an effective leader can bounce back from criticism, showing the ability to handle them with ease, taking criticism in a constructive way, rather than interpreting it based on personal views. To sum up, the effective leaders are those possess the qualities of being dependable, agreeable, adjustability and having a fluency in language. In short, personality plays a key role on how to be an effective leader.

Reference Ewen, R. B. (1998). Personality: A topical approach. Mahweh, NJ: Erlbaum. Popkins, N. C. (1998). The Five-Factor Model: Emergence of a Taxonomic Model for Personality Psychology. Retrieved from http://www. personalityresearch. org/papers/popkins. html Howard, P. J. , & Howard, J. M. (2004). An Introduction to the Five Factor Model of Personality for Human Professionals. Retrieved from HTTP://www. centacs. com/quickstart. htm Marine Corps Leadership Traits (2008). Retrieved December 18, 2008, from http://www. au. af. mil/au/awc/awcgate/usmc/leadership_traits. htm

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