Skip to content

Personality, attitude, and leader influences on divergent thinking and creativity in organizations

by Scott David Williams
European Journal of Innovation Management ()
Get full text at journal


Divergent thinking is an integral process in creativity. This study presents and tests an interactionist, divergent-thinking based model of individual creativity in organizations. Openness to experience is a personality trait that relates to divergent thinking and, therefore, is hypothesized to be related to creative performance in organizations. The effects of openness to experience are likely to be partially mediated by an individual's attitude toward divergent thinking (ATDT). Some individuals do not care to engage in divergent thinking, and researchers have asserted that negative ATDT is an impediment to individual creativity in organizations. However, the empirical link between one's ATDT and one's creative performance has yet to be demonstrated. Contextual factors also influence creative attitudes and behavior. ATDT is also likely to be influenced by one's supervisor's attitude. The amount of structure that supervisors initiate for their subordinates is likely to have a direct, negative effect on subordinates' divergent thinking, and may also affect divergent thinking indirectly by influencing subordinates' ATDT. Results generally support the model. Openness to experience and ATDT are positively associated with employees' creative performance. In addition, some support is provided for a negative relationship between initiating structure and subordinates' ATDT. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]

Cite this document (BETA)

Authors on Mendeley

Readership Statistics

115 Readers on Mendeley
by Discipline
56% Business, Management and Accounting
16% Psychology
14% Social Sciences
by Academic Status
29% Student > Ph. D. Student
23% Student > Master
16% Student > Doctoral Student
by Country
3% Germany
2% United Kingdom
2% Netherlands

Sign up today - FREE

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research. Learn more

  • All your research in one place
  • Add and import papers easily
  • Access it anywhere, anytime

Start using Mendeley in seconds!

Sign up & Download

Already have an account? Sign in