Scientific Study 2018
How can matching two people based on their personality improve the outcomes of a one-to-one relationship?
1. Matching on the basis of similar personalities predicts participant satisfaction. As a result, participants are more satisfied, the closer their personality traits are matched to others.
2. The more extroverted the matching partner, the more supported participants feel in reaching their goals and in their personal development. At the same time, they rate the quality of the relationship higher and find their match professionally and socially more attractive. Furthermore, they trust their match more and more personal information is shared.
3. Matching on the basis of personal preference criteria predicts instrumental and psychological support as well as the matching quality. For the matching process, this means that the more participants are matched that you would like to work with, the more support you will get in reaching your goals and in your personal development and the higher you will rate quality of the relationship.
We wanted to find out the highest leverage for successful matching by using different matching approaches taking into account the different personalities and preferences of the participants.
To this end, we carried out a survey from February till August 2018 as part of a Master’s thesis at the Institute of Psychological Methods and Diagnostics at Ludwig-Maximilians-University München (LMU Munich) in collaboration with Chemistree GmbH.
Participants had the unique opportunity to find out, completely free of charge, how matching is working. Additionally, they got their own completely individual match according to their preferences: they decided if they want to widen their network in a specific area or if they were looking for meaningful conversations based on their interests.
CEO, Chemistree GmbH
'Similarities or diversity – what is important for the right chemistry when you first meet somebody? What is crucial to guarantee the long-term success of a tandem? How important are the framework requirements? This survey will help us find the answers!’
PD Dr. Felix Schönbrodt
Institute of Psychological Methods and Diagnostics at Ludwig-Maximilians-University München (LMU Munich)
Prof. Dr. Markus Bühner
Psychological Methodology and Diagnostics, LMU Munich
'Personality matching is an extremely exciting area of research and we are far from having all the
answers. While first findings are very promising, there are many factors around successful matching that we
know surprisingly little about. Your participation in the survey will actively contribute to
valuable research in this area!‘
1. First Questionnaire
2. Meeting in Person
3. Second Questionnaire
Of course, taking part in the survey was on a voluntary basis. All data is stored in a pseudo anonymised way, so that a statistical inference back to your person is not possible. The data gathered and created by the survey is only used for scientific purposes and is not shared with third parties.
We are basing our survey on scientific findings in the areas of mentoring and relational quality. Please read below for a summary of the current scientific findings:
Interpersonal relationships form the basis of our wellbeing, our ability to work under pressure, and our daily learnings. (Roffey, 2012).
Mentoring is cited as an example of a relationship in which an experienced mentor will point to opportunities for learning and offer support and guidance to a less experienced mentee. Research in this area has shown that similarities in personality, values and outlook between mentor and mentee are strongly connected to the success of a mentoring program (Eby et al., 2013; Ghosh, 2014; Menges, 2015). In particular, this will lead to more support for reaching goals (instrumental support), better personal and emotional development (psychosocial support) and improved relational quality. All these three factors in turn are positively linked to the satisfaction rate of the experience. The better the instrumental and psychosocial support, the higher the learning experiences reported.
Other areas of research also point towards the fundamental role that personal similarities between the two parties in a relationship play. When it comes to working relationship between managers and employees, similarities are connected to the relational quality (Bernerth, Armenakis, Feild, Giles, & Walker, 2008). In friendship relationships, the initiation and maintenance of a friendship are associated with the degree of personality similarities of both parties (Harris & Vazire, 2016; Youyou, Stillwell, Schwartz, & Kosinski, 2017). These research findings can be attributed to Byrne’s similarity-attraction paradigm (1971). It argues that people will seem more attractive if they are similar to yourself.
Furthermore, it is not only important that the two parties in a relationship are similar but that they are consciously aware of these similarities. The more similar two people are and the more obvious these similarities are, the higher the level of attraction (Montoya & Horton, 2013). Similarities can, for example, be highlighted by giving people information about the areas where the similarities occur.
Alongside personality, there are numerous variables that play a part in successful relationships and effective collaborations, such as age, gender, cultural background and professional experiences. It depends on several criteria how dyadic relationships or teams should be composed and which aspects of diversity should be taken into account. At this point, both the role and the aim of the matching are determining factors.
Bernerth, J. B., Armenakis, A. A., Feild, H. S., Giles, W. F., & Walker, H. J. (2008).
The Influence of Personality Differences Between Subordinates and Supervisors on Perceptions of LMX. Group & Organization Management, 33(2), 216-240.
Byrne, D. E. (1971). The attraction paradigm (Vol. 11): Academic Press.
Eby, L. T., Allen, T. D., Hoffman, B. J., Baranik, L. E., Sauer, J. B., Baldwin, S., . . . Evans, S. C. (2013).
An interdisciplinary meta-analysis of the potential antecedents, correlates, and consequences of protege perceptions of mentoring. Psychological Bulletin, 139(2), 441-476. doi:10.1037/a0029279
Ghosh, R. (2014).
Antecedents of mentoring support: a meta-analysis of individual, relational, and structural or organizational factors. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 84(3), 367-384. doi:10.1016/j.jvb.2014.02.009
Harris, K., & Vazire, S. (2016).
On friendship development and the Big Five personality traits. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 10(11), 647-667. doi:10.1111/spc3.12287
Menges, C. (2015).
Toward Improving the Effectiveness of Formal Mentoring Programs. Group & Organization Management, 41(1), 98-129. doi:10.1177/1059601115579567
Montoya, R. M., & Horton, R. S. (2013).
A meta-analytic investigation of the processes underlying the similarity-attraction effect. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 30(1), 64-94.
Roffey, S. (2012).
Positive Realtionships: Evidence-based practice across the world. Dordrecht: Springer.
Youyou, W., Stillwell, D., Schwartz, H. A., & Kosinski, M. (2017).
Birds of a Feather Do Flock Together: Behavior-Based PersonalityAssessment Method Reveals Personality Similarity Among Couples and Friends. Psychological Science, 28(3), 276-284. doi:10.1177/0956797617697667