Why Psychological Traits Impact How Successful You’ll Be

When you ask a 9-year-old what they want to be when they grow up, the answers are often broad and vary from a firefighter, to an astronaut, to batman. But how might personality traits channel individuals into the careers they actually choose? Answering this question involves distinguishing between who people are and who people want to become. In other words, there is a difference between psychological traits (descriptors) and motivations. One can view the relationship between traits and goals as separate--meaningful traits represent who we are and goals represent who we want to become--or as linked--traits are and goals are intimately related constructs.


Posted by Madeline Ford on May 17, 2013

personality psychology Nonconscious Motivations Research Traits and Scales Research Methods


Evolution of Personality: Environmental Variation

In last week’s blog post, I addressed the evolutionary genetics of personality and the genetic contributions to variation in personality traits. In this post, I would like to examine a different phenomenon, namely how the same genes can lead to different non-random variation in personality. If we want to understand how traits work as motivations, we need to understand how they evolved. Let’s briefly review some very simple models of how variation can link to genetics. In one model, variation in personality is due simply to people having different combinations of genes: People with gene A tend to be extroverts, while people with gene B tend to be introverts. This kind of model could represent what biologists call an obligate adaptation (a gene causes a trait in a fixed manner). However, people with the same genes may develop very different personalities if they are put in the same environment, through what is referred to as facultative adaptations (genes create mechanisms which develop in different ways in different environments, or different genes are turned on in different environments). Facultative adaptations are like “if-then” rules, as everyone tends to have the same genes; but if they develop in one environment, they create one characteristic (say, extraversion), and if they develop in another environment, they lead to another characteristic (say, introversion).


Posted by Madeline Ford on Apr 25, 2013

Nonconscious Motivations Research Traits and Scales Psychology and Marketing


What Marketers Should Know About the Nonconscious Webinar: Q + A

We've compiled the top five questions via email or twitter, and had our VP of Research, Kyle Thomas, respond. Still have more questions? Feel free to reach out 


Posted by Emily Dyess on Apr 22, 2013

personality psychology Nonconscious Motivations Research Traits and Scales Data Collection


What Every Marketer Should Know About the Nonconscious: Key Points + Takeaways

Yesterday, we hosted our live webinar on What Marketers Should Know About the Nonconscious. Below is a brief overview of some things you may have missed as well as access to the presentation. A recording of the webinar as well as a blog post devoted to questions and answers around the topic will be posted later this week.

Decisions are made in the pursuit of goals and motivations, and most decisions happen outside of our awareness through nonconscious processes. Our brain is designed to keep this information from us, providing instead plausible and socially acceptable responses about our decision-making when prompted. This is the result of a psychological mechanism known as the Confabulator, and as a result of this, explicit reports cannot be trusted. Leveraging psychological traits offers a new way to access these nonconscious processes and identity the true motivations of why we do what we do. Read on for the key points and takeaways from our webinar, "What Every Marketer Should Know About the Nonconscious," with Dan Cudgma, Kyle Thomas and guest Geoffrey Miller.


Posted by Angela Bray on Apr 18, 2013

Consumer Behavior Nonconscious Motivations Research Traits and Scales Psychology and Marketing Brand Personality Purchasing Behavior


Brand Personality for Small Businesses

It takes a certain set of personality traits to be an entrepreneur. There are many words I could use to describe an entrepreneur, (adventurous, risk-taking, innovative, problem-solver) but it’s safe to say “boring” isn’t one of them. The do-ers and the makers of the world, who truly believe they have what it takes to overcome the competition, possess a unique set of motivations. It is these motivations that make their desire to own both the success and the failure, that set these individuals apart. But, what are the necessary tools for a small business owner to create a personalized experience? The psychological traits and truly unique motivations of shop owners can be identified and harnessed in order to amplify the success of these small businesses. 


Posted by Emily Dyess on Mar 27, 2013

Small Businesses Nonconscious Motivations Research Traits and Scales Psychology and Marketing Brand Personality Research Methods

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