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Filtering by Tag: organizational climate

The Dark Triad and Competitive Psychological Climate at Work: A Model of Reciprocal Relationships in Dependence of Age and Organization Change

Andreas Hirschi

Spurk, D., & Hirschi, A. (2018). The Dark Triad and competitive psychological climate at work: A model of reciprocal relationships in dependence of age and organization change. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology 27(6), 736-751.doi:10.1080/1359432X.2018.1515200


Integrating an interactionist model of personality development, the cumulative continuity model of personality development, and selection-evocation-manipulation theory, the present study analysed reciprocal relations of the Dark Triad common core and its sub-traits of narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism with competitive psychological climate. Moreover, within a large (N = 1,185) and longitudinal sample of employees from Germany, latent cross-lagged panel analyses were applied to analyse the moderating roles of age and organization change (i.e., organizational turnover). Overall, results revealed positive reciprocal relations between the Dark Triad common core, its sub-traits, and competitive psychological climate. The Dark Triad common core and Machiavellianism were more stable within the older (50 to 59 years) compared to the younger (25 to 34 years) age group. However, we found no age differences for the relation between competitive psychological climate and change in the Dark Triad common core or its sub-traits. Among employees who changed organizations, the Dark Triad common core, narcissism, and psychopathy were more strongly positively related to the change in competitive psychological climate than in the non-change group. This suggests stronger selection compared to evocation- manipulation effects for individuals with high values in the Dark Triad common core, narcissism, and psychopathy, but not for Machiavellianism.

Keywords: Dark Triad, Competitive Climate, Age, Organizational Turnover, Reciprocity

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Competition in Career Tournaments: Investigating the Joint Impact of Trait Competitiveness and Competitive Psychological Climate on Objective and Subjective Career Success

Andreas Hirschi

Spurk, D., Keller, A. C., & Hirschi, A. (2019). Competition in career tournaments: investigating the joint impact of trait competitiveness and competitive psychological climate on objective and subjective career success. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology ,doi : 10.1111/joop.12238


This study investigates the joint impact of trait competitiveness (i.e., the enjoyment of interpersonal competition and the desire to win and be better than others) and competitive psychological climate (i.e., the degree to which employees perceive organizational rewards as contingent upon comparisons of their performance against that of their peers) on objective and subjective career success. Based on tournament and person–environment fit theory, we assumed that the positive effects of trait competitiveness on different indicators of objective (i.e., salary, promotions) and subjective (i.e., career satisfaction, internal marketability, and meaningful work) career success are stronger under conditions of a highly competitive psychological climate. Moderated regression analyses using data from a 6-month time-lagged study of 340 employees working in diverse occupational fields in their early careers revealed joint effects of the two competition variables. For both objective and subjective career success, the effect of trait competitiveness was strengthened under conditions of a highly competitive psychological climate. We discuss the results by integrating theoretical reasoning from a tournament and person– environment fit perspective on the attainment of career success.

Keywords: career success, tournament theory, trait competitiveness, competitive psychological climate

Practitioner Points

  • Organizations should be aware that competitive environments, and specifically their related perceptions, are only beneficial for some employees’ career success

  • Within perceived highly competitive organizational contexts, personnel selection and development should consider competitive traits of employees when deciding about hiring and career planning

  • Career counselors may consider perceived organizational climates and competitive personal characteristics when objective and subjective career success is of topic in the counseling process

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