Purpose: The relationships between the Big Five personality traits and life and job satisfaction have been examined extensively. Despite this attention, however, most existing theories focus on a few global dimensions of the Big Five while relying primarily upon a selection of theoretically relevant but unmeasured facets to illuminate their factor-level explanations. The purpose of this paper is to examine personality–satisfaction relationships for job and life domains at the facet level to better identify and explain why certain global Big Five traits consistently relate to satisfaction, taking both factors and facets into account. Design/methodology/approach: Data from over 20 specific occupational samples were pooled meta-analytically to examine personality facet of job/life satisfaction relationships and their generalizability. Bifactor latent variable modeling using meta-analytic input was used to examine independent contributions of general and unique personality facets. Findings: The dominance facet of extraversion, low self-esteem facet of neuroticism, and responsibility facet of conscientiousness were most closely related to satisfaction variables. There were independent contributions of general and unique facet level personality–satisfaction relations for the neuroticism and conscientiousness domains, but not for the extraversion domain. Research limitations/implications: Findings contribute to the literature on the bandwidth–fidelity dilemma in measuring personality and theories involving personality at work. Originality/value: This study established the generalizability of Big Five traits–satisfaction relations and identified the empirically supported personality paths to understanding job and life satisfaction. This study also demonstrated how meta-analysis can be combined with bifactor models to understand substantive relations.
- Job satisfaction
- Life satisfaction