Optimism predicting employees' creativity: the mediating role of positive affect and the positivity ratio

Arménio Rego, Filipa Sousa, Carla Marques, Miguel Pina e Cunha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

59 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We examine how optimism predicts creativity both directly and through the mediating role of positive affect and the positivity ratio (the ratio between the frequency of positive and negative affective states). Five hundred and ninety five employees reported their positive and negative affect, as well as their optimism. Their creativity was reported by supervisors. The main findings are the following: (1) optimism predicts creativity both directly and through the mediating role of positive affect and the positivity ratio; (2) the relationship between the positivity ratio and creativity is curvilinear, in such a way that an "excessive'' ratio is detrimental to creativity. The findings stress the relevance of optimism both for individuals and organizations, and suggest that examining positivity ratios is fruitful in the creativity domain, as it has been in other domains, and that negative affect should not be viewed simply as an obstacle when studying employees' creativity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)244-270
JournalEuropean Journal Of Work And Organizational Psychology
Volume21
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012

Keywords

  • Creativity
  • Negative affect
  • Optimism

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