Development of a personality profile of a firefighter

Mary Monrose Leckband, Florida International University


This study investigated the differences in personality, consistent with the vocational theory of personality as proposed by Holland (1997), for a modern day firefighter. This study also investigates the relationships between personality characteristics and job duties performed by firefighters and firefighter-paramedics. Archival data from employees (N = 98) of a Southeastern Florida fire department who completed the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI), Hogan Development Survey (HDS) and Motives, Values, Preferences Inventory (MVPI), as well as a self-report questionnaire on variety proneness (boredom), job satisfaction, and affective well-being data were analyzed. The scores of the firefighters on the HPI, HDS, and MVPI were used as predictive data, and criterion data used in this study were self-report satisfaction data on job involvement, variety proneness (boredom), and affective well-being. In addition, criterion data on performance were obtained from the employment histories of the participants, and were correlated with the personality scale scores to determine if personality is predictive of aspects of performance. Participants in this study varied with respect to the type of firefighter duties required from them on their jobs. The participants were categorized into three duty classifications: Group 1 (G1) are the firefighters hired before 1990 and are only certified as firefighters; Group 2 (G2) are the firefighters hired before 1990 who became paramedics at some point after employment and after fire college training; and Group 3 (G3) are the firefighters hired after 1990 who were trained as paramedics in the fire college and who were aware of the paramedic requirement at time of application or were already trained as paramedics at the time of application. From the research reviewed and presented in this paper, hypotheses were generated about differences between the personality types of firefighter groups G1 and G2 versus G3, in accordance with Holland's theories. In addition, it was hypothesized that personality will predict outcomes of satisfaction and performance. Results found that job satisfaction was not found to be statistically different among the groups. However, the groups differed significantly on 5 of the predictive instrument scales, and personality was found to be a predictor of limited performance data.

Subject Area

Occupational psychology

Recommended Citation

Leckband, Mary Monrose, "Development of a personality profile of a firefighter" (2005). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI3169459.