This mixed methods study examined the proactive personalities of cadets at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Survey responses from first- and third-year cadets were analyzed to examine the influence of a cadet’s proactive personality on several factors, to include perceived organizational support, leader-member exchange, affective commitment, job performance, job satisfaction, and intention to quit. Findings indicated that cadets’ proactive personalities significantly predicted their levels of perceived organizational support, the quality of their leader-member exchanges, their emotional commitment to the Academy, their job satisfaction, and their job performance as measured by their Military Performance Average. In addition, social desirability moderated the relationship between the cadets’ proactive personalities and their intention to quit. Furthermore, experiences and perspectives of cadets were captured using open-ended survey questions which addressed how cadets define proactivity, how cadets engage in proactive behavior, how naturally proactive cadets are perceived, how being proactive is important to leader development, and how being proactive benefitted the cadets. The collective responses contributed to the overall essence of what it means to be proactive at the Academy from the perspectives of cadets. Overall, findings supported the notion that encouraging cadets to be proactive and helping them gain access to being proactive may contribute to their leadership development. As such, the proactive personality construct should be considered as part of the CCLD’s (2011) Conceptual Framework for Developing Leaders of Character, specifically within the area of cadets owning their development, the first step in the deliberate process of leader development at the Academy.
|Commitee:||Jackson, Jeff, Ramirez, Al, Wehrman, Joseph, Winters, Marcus|
|School:||University of Colorado at Colorado Springs|
|Department:||College of Education - Educational Leadership|
|School Location:||United States -- Colorado|
|Source:||DAI-A 76/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Behavioral psychology, Higher education, Military studies|
|Keywords:||Air Force Academy, Leadership development, Military academy, Proactive behavior, Proactive personality|
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