Agreeableness (A deep dive)

In this article, we’ll describe “Agreeableness”, it’s history, Big five personality traits, Agreeableness and Disagreeableness and how to measure agreeableness.

AGREEABLENESS:

Agreeableness is widely known as the personality trait in the behavioral characteristics of an individual that is perceived as kind, sympathetic, cooperative, warm, and considerate.

In contemporary personality psychology, agreeableness is one of the five major dimensions of the personality structure.

When the agreeableness is scored, the people who score high on this dimension are known to be empathetic and altruistic, whereas people who score low in agreeableness are known to have selfish behavior and has lack empathy.

Whereas if people score very low in this dimension then it shows that the person focuses on manipulation and competing with others rather than cooperating with them.

What Is Agreeableness?

As we have learned so far is that agreeableness is a personality trait, and people high in agreeableness are empathetic, show great concern for others’ welfare and are always the ones who offer help others in need.

An individual who is said to be agreeable is a people-oriented person and has good social skills as well.

They always try and see good in people and try to find their positive side all the time. The less agreeable person, on the other hand, seems to be more manipulative, callous, aggressive and competitive.

They hardly care about other people, and their main concern is always themselves.

They have very little patience and are easily irritated and annoyed.

Signs of the highly agreeable person:

  • They seem to be happy and highly satisfied with their lives
  • They very rarely are seen to be complaining about something
  • They do not criticize or humiliate people often
  • They do not cause trouble to other people of any kind
  • They are not rigid and do not tend towards the idea of perfectionism
  • They always seem to be cooperating with others and their whole sole motive is to live in harmony
  • They trust others and are often altruistic and pro-social

HISTORY:

Gordon Allport and Henry S. Odbert in 1936 studied the concept of agreeableness, then after 7 years, Raymond Cattell published a cluster analysis of the thousands of personality-related words.

The cluster served as a foundation for Cattell’s further studies and researches to identify fundamental, universal, human personality factors. Eventually, he settled on 16 personality factors through the use of factor analysis.

Using Cattells’s original clusters, the 16 Personality Factors, multiple researchers independently developed a five-factor model of personality.

From the early 1960s, a factor called agreeableness or sociability was included but began to dominate personality research in the early 1980s with the work of Lewis Goldberg.

Using Lexical studies similar to those of Allport and Odbert, Goldberg chose the term “Big Five”.

Agreeableness was defined by a number of personality-related words which include friendly, good-natured, cooperative, trustful, nurturing, sociable and considerate.

BIG FIVE PERSONALITY TRAITS:

The big five personality traits are:

  • Extraversion 
  • Openness to Experience
  • Agreeableness 
  • Conscientiousness
  • Neuroticism

Agreeableness is one of the ‘big five’ personality factors or traits and higher the agreeable person is, a higher social and empathetic person is.

These people are more sociable and focus to please others and are always willing to help those in need. As a result, agreeable people tend to work well in a team and as part of a team.

They don’t put up in an argument and try to let go of others’ mistakes rather confronting them.

Agreeableness is considered to be a superordinate trait which means that it is a group of personality sub-traits that cluster together.

AGREEABLENESS AND DISAGREEABLENESS:

  • Agreeableness refers to the pro-social behavior, people who are warm, sociable and likable amongst his or her peers. These people are friendly towards others and try and remain out of any kind of argumentation. They are highly tolerable individuals and has a lot of patience, they are trusting and forgiving individuals. These people try and avoid any conflict or try to resolve issues. They are the peacemaker of a group or a team and attempts to make peace between two arguing or conflicting groups.
  • On the other hand, Disagreeable people are less pro-social, they are focused on their personal needs, they are selfish, suspicious and distrusting. Their own friends find difficulty in trusting these individuals. They are argumentative and are less willing to engage in conversations or socialize with unfamiliar people. These people have been found to exhibit higher levels of ‘dark triad’ traits, characteristics with negative associations, including narcissism and psychopathy.

MEASURING AGREEABLENESS:

Agreeableness can be measured using self-report questionnaires, where a person is asked to review a statement and then tell the degree to which it describes their own personality on a Likert scale 1-5, where 1 depicts strongly disagree and 5 depicts strongly agree.

The questionnaire include Revised NEW Personality Inventory (NEO PI-R) and the International Personality Item Pool.

The main motive of these questions to assess agreeableness is to allow the respondent to provide the answers which best describe him and provides greater insight into their personality than the mere observation of his or her behavior.

It is important for the respondents to be honest with their answers while filling the Likert scale. 

It has been found in many types of research that the respondents provide answers which they believe will project themselves positively, rather than reflecting their actual personalities.

This distortion of responses in order to show positive self-presentation is known as a social desirability bias.

CONCLUSION:

In this blog, we’ve described “Agreeableness”, it’s history, Big five personality traits, Agreeableness and Disagreeableness and how to measure agreeableness. Please feel free to comment below or leave a suggestion, we appreciate your time.

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FAQ:

Is agreeableness a good thing?

Yes, agreeableness is a good thing as if a person is agreeable then he is empathetic, has harmony, is social and ultimately brings good friends, likability, trust, and fondness.

What is an agreeableness in the Big 5?

Agreeableness is one of the ‘big five’ personality factors or traits and higher the agreeable person is, a higher social and empathetic person is.

These people are more sociable and focus to please others and are always willing to help those in need.

What is a neurotic personality?

Neurotic personality refers to be in a negative or anxious personality.

These people tend to be more depressed, often have feelings of guilt, envy, anger, and anxiety.

What is an agreeableness in personality?

Agreeableness is widely known as the personality trait in the behavioral characteristics of an individual that is perceived as kind, sympathetic, cooperative, warm, and considerate.

In contemporary personality psychology, agreeableness is one of the five major dimensions of the personality structure.

What causes agreeableness?

An individual who is said to be agreeable is a people-oriented person and has good social skills as well.

They always try and see good in people and try to find their positive side all the time.

CITATIONS:

psychologytoday.com

wikipedia.org

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