Personality is one of the most studied antecedents of workplace safety and accidents. With the economy getting back to work after Covid-19, what safety personality traits will you look for in your hiring?

Here’s a minireview based on Beus et al. (2015). Hypotheses, and whether they were supported are as follows.

Extraverted workers pursue status, power and fun. As they compete they are likely to cut corners or ignore safety to get ahead.

Weak support (r=.10)

Agreeable workers pursue harmony, they want to avoid jeopardising relationships and wellbeing, they’re less likely to engage in unsafe behaviour.

Supported. (r=-.26).

Conscientious people are thorough, responsible, and pursue achievement. They don’t cut safety corners.

Supported (r=-.25)

Neurotic people are easily distracted which affects safety behaviour.

Supported. (r=.13)

Open individuals want autonomy, question authority and may be dissatisfied with safety routines.

Not supported

Bigger correlations emerged for facets below the Big 5. We recommend trait scores inform interviews in the wake of the pandemic, or alternatively, for building models of traits predict safety outcomes.