Trauma surgeon personality and job satisfaction: Results from a national survey

Kelli H. Foulkrod, Craig Field, Carlos V R Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Personality is correlated with job satisfaction, whereas job satisfaction is linked to performance. This study examines personality of practicing trauma surgeons in relation to their job satisfaction. The dominant theory in personality research is the five-factor model, which includes: extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, emotional stability, and openness. The sample was identified from American Association for Surgery of Trauma, Eastern Association for Surgery of Trauma, and Western Trauma Association membership. Aweb-based survey of demographics and empirically supported measures was created. Four hundred and twelve trauma surgeons (49 ± 14-years-old, 85% male) completed the survey. When comparing satisfied to unsatisfied trauma surgeons on personality variables, extraversion (5.0 ± 1.6 vs 4.4 ± 1.6, P = 0.014) and emotional stability (5.8 ± 1.1 vs 5.4 ± 1.2, P = 0.007) were significantly higher in satisfied surgeons. Moderate correlations were found for job satisfaction with emotional stability (r = 0.20, P < 0.01) and extraversion (r = 0.20, P < 0.01). Logistic regression of personality variables highlighted the significance of emotional stability and extraversion in prediction of job satisfaction. Extraversion and emotional stability are the most significant personality factors to job satisfaction of trauma surgeons. These findings may have important implications for surgical resident recruitment, job performance, and retention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)422-427
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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