The Role of Early Supervisory Experience in Supervisor Performance

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Explores the role of early supervisory experience and cognitive ability in 1st-line supervisor performance. Similar to the F. L. Schmidt et al (see record 1986-31441-001) study of nonsupervisors, this research tested structural models hypothesizing relationships among supervisory experience, cognitive ability, supervisory knowledge and proficiency, and performance ratings, using a sample of 570 2nd-tour soldiers. The Schmidt et al model with an additional ability → experience path provided the best fit. The significant ability → experience path was interpreted as indicating that demonstrated ability contributes to soldiers being given the opportunity to obtain supervisory experience. Experience had a greater impact on supervisor proficiency than on supervisor knowledge. Ability had a greater impact on supervisor knowledge than on proficiency. Discussion focuses on the personal characteristics that might be involved in being assigned supervisory responsibilities.

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Journal of Applied Psychology, v. 78, issue 3, p. 443-449