Effects of Team Personality Composition on Member Performance: A Multilevel Perspective

Matthew S. Prewett, Matthew I. Brown, Ashita Goswami, Neil D. Christiansen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Personality traits are often theorized to affect team performance by predisposing members to perform individual-level behaviors. Yet, member personality traits may also affect team performance by creating contextual influences on member behaviors. As such, the purpose of the present study was to examine the effect of team personality composition on individual-level performance using hierarchical linear modeling. A range of effects for team-level elevation were observed, but few effects emerged for team-level heterogeneity. Main effects from elevation in Extraversion and Openness to Experience were consistently observed across analyses. The main effects from team elevation in Conscientiousness and Agreeableness, however, were only observed prior to controlling for individual-level trait scores or when using a group-mean centering method for individual-level trait scores. In addition, elevation in Conscientiousness and heterogeneity in Emotional Stability moderated the relationships between individual trait scores and performance, such that individual-level relations were stronger when team elevation was higher (Conscientiousness) and heterogeneity was lower (Emotional Stability). These findings provide evidence that team member personality can influence performance through contextual phenomena.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)316-348
Number of pages33
JournalGroup & Organization Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018


  • hierarchical linear modeling
  • personality diversity
  • personality elevation
  • team composition
  • teamwork


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