What employees dislike about their jobs: Relationship between personality-based fit and work satisfaction

Neil Christiansen, Michael Sliter, Christopher T. Frost

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Personality has been largely neglected in research investing person-job fit, particularly in terms of appraisals of distress and subsequent strain outcomes. In this study, the effects of congruence between personality and task-demands on job satisfaction was examined based on the idea that employees become distressed when asked to perform activities that require trait elevations inconsistent with their own. Job tasks were identified for resident assistants and linked to personality traits using job analysis. A sample of employees (N= 89) were then asked to complete a personality inventory, rate their distress when performing the various job tasks, and evaluate their job satisfaction. Results indicated that tasks associated with Agreeableness and Conscientiousness were perceived as more distressing when workers were low on those traits, and increased distress was related to less satisfaction across task domains. In addition, individuals high in Neuroticism tended to evaluate all tasks as being more distressing and most notably those related to Extraversion. Implications are discussed in terms of research on Trait Activation Theory, job fit, and work stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-29
Number of pages5
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
StatePublished - Dec 2014


  • Appraisal
  • Five factor model
  • Job satisfaction
  • Job stress
  • Person-job fit
  • Personality
  • Trait activation


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