San Diego State UniversityDepartment of Psychology
Jeffrey M. Conte

        Conte, J. M., & Jacobs, R. R. (in press). Validity evidence linking polychronicity and Big 5 personality dimensions to absence, lateness, and performance. Human Performance.


This study developed criterion and construct validity evidence for a relatively new construct, polychronicity, which is the extent to which people prefer to be engaged in two or more tasks or activities at the same time.  Hypothesized relationships between polychronicity and lateness, absence, and supervisory ratings of performance were developed and tested in a field sample of 181 train operators.  Results indicated that polychronicity was significantly related to absence (r = .25), lateness (r = .19), and supervisory ratings of performance (r = -.17).  Hypothesized Big Five personality dimensions (Conscientiousness, Extraversion, and Neuroticism) were also significantly associated with absence, but not lateness.  Specifically, absence was significantly related to Conscientiousness (r = -.23), Extraversion (r = .15), and Neuroticism (r = .19).  In addition, polychronicity accounted for variance in absence and lateness beyond that accounted for by hypothesized Big Five personality dimensions, cognitive ability, and demographic characteristics.  Future research directions for work on polychronicity are discussed. (Copyright Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.).