Personality assessment of Jackie Robinson Essay

This essay has a total of 1767 words and 8 pages.


personality assessment of Jackie Robinson





Personality Assessment: Jackie Robinson
Every individual in our society is different; each person is known or described
differently from one another. The Big Five Factors: neuroticism, extraversion, openness
to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness, are thought to describe and outline
personality in all cultures and language families. They characterize the differences in
humankind and can be used to predict or explain job performance. Jackie Robinson was a
man who I would describe as having a strong and persevering personality. He grew up at a
time when racial tensions were at their worst, and yet, managed to succeed and follow
through with everything he faced. At times he was forced to “suck it up,”
although many times it meant being humiliated in front of thousands of people. However,
everyone that Jackie Robinson encountered was impressed by his genuine personality.

In most situations, neuroticism is thought to be a negative trait. Jackie Robinson scored
very low on this trait (total=23), meaning that he was calm, easy-going, and able to
resist temptations. These facets are constantly demonstrated throughout Robinson’s
autobiography. Robinson was the first African American to play in the Major Leagues for
baseball. He was considered the “experiment” of major league baseball.
Although Robinson played for a team in the North, there was much resentment from the
players of the Dodgers, many of whom were from the South. When he first started traveling
with the team, not only was Robinson and his family separated from the team physically,
they also had to face many derogatory comments from Robinson’s fellow teammates.
However, Robinson kept his composure and sucked it up. As Robinson said, “I
don’t believe there was a man in that game, including me, who though I could take
that. I had to force back my anger…. with guts enough not to fight back”
(78). Robinson demonstrated the opposite of impulsiveness in almost all of his actions.
Over time, he “had learned how to exercise self-control – to answer insults,
violence, and injustice with silence – and had learned how to earn the respect of
(his) teammates” (81).

Jackie Robinson’s score for extraversion was a 78, meaning that although he was
extraverted, at times he demonstrated some introverted traits. Although he was a friendly
individual, Robinson, in many situations, was forced to keep to himself. In addition, he
liked to take it easy whenever possible, gearing up for whatever was to come his way. He
also, however, had some extraverted traits, including the fact that from the time he
started school, he was always active, whether it be in sports, or working with the First
African American Bank or the NAACP. He was a true leader with the First African American
Bank and the NAACP, speaking in front of many people, and being aggressive enough to
accomplish what was needed.

Robinson constantly demonstrated attempts to be gregarious and to be recognized by others.
Although he remembers “standing alone at first base – the only black man on
the field,” he fought hard to become “just another guy”. Jackie
Robinson never quit because things went the wrong way. If anything, hardships forced him
to work harder at succeeding. When he went on into the business world, he “always
strove to learn as much as (he) could so (he) would not be just a figurehead” (287).
Robinson believed in the utmost integrity, and was a fighter.

Jackie Robinson embraced every opportunity with open arms and full dedication. His score
of 80 on openness to experience can be explained by his focus on the tasks, to which he
was engaged, his acknowledgement of feelings, his willingness to try new and different
activities, and his tendency to challenge current traditions. He believed that African
Americans could become an important presence in baseball, and he tried his hardest to see
it through. In addition, he realized the importance of a bank catered to less fortunate
minorities, so he helped to anchor the First African American Bank in Harlem.

Robinson was honored to be the “token” in baseball. “He was proud to be
in the hurricane eye of a significant breakthrough and to be used to prove that a sport
can’t be called national if blacks are barred from it” (9). He did not let
anything hold him back and broke social barriers to make advancement for African
Americans. In addition, Robinson was very aware of his feelings, even if he didn’t
always openly express them. He also appreciated the gestures of others to acknowledge his
presence. At one game in Canada, against a team that had previously been cruel to
Robinson, the fans expressed their dislike toward the opposing team by booing. Robinson
“didn’t approve of this kind of retaliation, but (he) felt a jubilant sense of
gratitude for the way the Canadians expressed their feelings” (64). Robinson was
very receptive to the feelings of other people. Not only did he constantly reexamine
social and political values, he allowed the country to do the same.

Agreeableness is a trait that can be positive or negative in different situations. Jackie
Robinson’s total score for this trait was 90, which means that although he is
usually agreeable, at times he might demonstrate some facets of low agreeableness.
Robinson, at times, liked to “get even.” When he was playing in the minor
leagues for the Dodgers, he was under constant torment. Robinson demonstrated some lack
of compliance and aggressiveness when a member of another team threw a black cat onto the
field during a game and yelled, “Hey, Jackie, there’s your cousin.”
Robinson proceeded to hit a double down the left field line, and later on scored. On
his way back to his dugout, Robinson yelled, “I guess my cousin is pretty happy
now” (62). However, if looked at from another angle, it can be said that Robinson
turned his anger into something positive…a run. Quite honestly, Robinson was just
being straightforward about how he felt, another facet of agreeableness.

Jackie Robinson realized that he had to try extra hard to succeed in life and in his
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