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Are predictions based on situational judgment tests precise enough for feedback in leadership development?

Situational judgment tests (SJTs) have much to recommend their use for personnel selection, but because of their low reliability the role of SJTs in behavioural training is largely unexplored. However, research showing that SJTs cannot measure homogenous constructs very well is based exclusively on internal analyses, for example, alpha reliability and factor analysis. In this study, we investigated whether patterns of correlations with external criteria could be used to show that SJT dimension scores are homogenous enough for feedback purposes in leadership development. A multidimensional SJT was designed for 268 high potential leaders on a development programme and used in conjunction with a multisource feedback instrument that measured the same competency framework. The SJT was criterion keyed using against the multisource feedback instrument using an N-Fold cross validation strategy. Convergent and divergent correlations between the SJT scores and corresponding multisource dimension scores suggested that SJT scores can be constructed in a way that permits dimension level feedback that would be useful in leadership development.

Guenole, Nigel; Chernyshenko, Sasha; Stark, Stephen and Drasgow, F.. 2015. Are Predictions based on Situational Judgment Tests Precise Enough for Feedback in Leadership Development? European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, pp. 1-11.

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Maladaptive personality at work: Exploring the darkness

Important changes in how personality is conceptualized and measured are occurring in clinical psychology. We focus on 1 aspect of this work that industrial psychologists have been slow to embrace, namely, a new trait model that can be viewed as a maladaptive counterpart to the Big 5. There is a conspicuous absence of work psychology research emerging on this trait model despite important implications for how we understand personality at work. We discuss objections to the trait model in a work context and offer rejoinders that might make researchers and practitioners consider applying this model in their work. We hope to stimulate discussion of this topic to avoid an unnecessary bifurcation in the conceptualization of maladaptive personality between industrial and clinical settings.

Guenole, Nigel. 2014. Maladaptive Personality at Work: Exploring the Darkness. Industrial and Organizational Psychology. 7 (1), pp. 85-97

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More than a mirage: An assessment center with more dimension variance than exercise variance

Assessment centres (ACs) are widely recognized to be among the best tools for assessing and developing management talent (Assessment Centres and Global Talent Management, 2011, Gower: London). Yet, the current consensus about the construct validity of ACs is that exercises rather than dimensions explain the majority of variance in ratings. Because much of the data on which these conclusions are based are now old, it is worthwhile to periodically re-examine this issue to see whether well-implemented designs produce better measurements of dimensions. We present results from 1,205 executive-level leaders from Fortune 500 firms across Europe and North America, who participated in developmental ACs that use modern design principles where assessors were formally examined to ensure they had a common frame or reference. Our results showed that while dimensions and exercises mutually determined ratings, more variation was owing to dimensions.

Guenole, Nigel; Chernyshenko, Sasha; Stark, Stephen; Cockerill, T. and Drasgow, F.. 2013. More than a Mirage: An Assessment Center with More Dimension Variance than Exercise Variance. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 86(1), pp. 5-21. ISSN 0963-1798

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Evidence for the validity of 360 dimensions in the presence of rater-source factors

Empirical research on the structure of 360-degree feedback ratings indicates that the source of the ratings (e.g., superiors, peers, subordinates) explains more variance than do the performance dimensions or competencies being measured. One alarming implication of this finding from studies of the internal validity of 360 ratings is that there appears to be little evidence to support the common practice of interpreting 360s in terms of dimension scores. To address whether rater-source factors are so pronounced that they should preclude the use of dimension scores, we considered the question from an external validity perspective and developed and tested a personality-based nomological network around both dimension and rater-source factors in a 360 data set. Using a sample of 825 managers and their feedback providers (3,300 participants overall), we found that ratee personality correlated more strongly with dimension scores than with source factors. This provides evidence to support the common practice of interpreting 360-degree feedback in terms of scores for separate dimensions and competencies, despite most of the variance in observed ratings being due to rater-source factors rather than dimensions.

Guenole, Nigel; Cockerill, Tony; Chamorro-Premuzic, Tomas and Smillie, Luke D. 2011. Evidence for the validity of 360 dimensions in the presence of rater-source factors. Consulting Psychology Journal Practice and Research. 63(4), pp. 203-218


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