Developing goal orientations conducive to learning and performance: An intervention study

Wang, Y, Wu, C, Parker, S and Griffin, M 2018, 'Developing goal orientations conducive to learning and performance: An intervention study', Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, vol. 91, no. 4, pp. 875-895.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Developing goal orientations conducive to learning and performance: An intervention study
Author(s) Wang, Y
Wu, C
Parker, S
Griffin, M
Year 2018
Journal name Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology
Volume number 91
Issue number 4
Start page 875
End page 895
Total pages 21
Publisher John Wiley & Sons
Abstract Goal orientation is an important psychological attribute for employees, as it has been found to predict a wide range of work-related outcomes. Although goal orientation has been well-studied, little is known about the extent to which individuals' stable, trait-like goal orientation can be changed and about whether some individuals are more likely than others to engage in such intrapersonal change. In this study, we examined an intervention program designed to change individuals' trait-like goal orientation. The results from 132 full-time managers and professionals participating in a part-time MBA course revealed that, on average, participants' performance-avoid orientation was lessened as a result of the intervention, while there was no overall change in learning orientation, perhaps due to ceiling effects. Furthermore, evidence showed individual variation in these changes. Drawing on adult attachment theory, we investigated and showed the critical role of facilitator support and individuals' attachment styles in shaping intrapersonal changes in goal orientation. Facilitator support resulted in fostering greater positive change, particularly for individuals with high levels of anxious attachment. Implications are discussed in terms of advancing theories on personality change and goal orientation, as well as designing interventions to support the development of positive psychological attributes.
Subject Organisational Behaviour
Industrial and Organisational Psychology
Keyword(s) Attachment style
Goal orientation
Personal development
Personality change
DOI - identifier 10.1111/joop.12227
Copyright notice © 2018 The British Psychological Society
ISSN 0963-1798
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