Role of Political Skill in Job Performance Prediction Beyond General Mental Ability and Personality in Cross-Sectional and Predictive Studies


  • The authors express their gratitude to the German Research Foundation (DFG), which supported this research (Az: Bl 385, 6-2).

Gerhard Blickle, Arbeits-, Organisations- und Wirtschaftspsychologie, Institut fuer Psychologie, Universitaet Bonn, Kaiser-Karl-Ring 9, 53111 Bonn, Germany. E-mail:


Political skill is the capacity to understand others in working life effectively, and to apply such knowledge to induce others to act in ways that add to one's personal or organizational goals. The present investigation reported the results of 2 studies designed to examine the job performance prediction effectiveness of political skill when investigated in conjunction with general mental ability (GMA) and personality characteristics. The results demonstrated that political skill accounted for a significant proportion of job performance variance beyond GMA and personality variables cross-sectionally in Study 1, and predictively (i.e., using a 1-year timeframe) in Study 2 examining effects on multiple dimensions of job performance. The implications of these results, strengths, limitations, and directions for future research are discussed.