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Multiple Intelligences, Chronic Relative Underperformance Risk and the Perception of the Organizational Creative Environment: Exploratory Correlational Study at Single Employer in the Netherlands
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  • Haiko Jessurun,
  • Gabriël Anthonio,
  • Sarah Gelper,
  • Mathieu Weggeman
Haiko Jessurun

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Gabriël Anthonio
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Sarah Gelper
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Mathieu Weggeman
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Creativity is important within knowledge-intensive organisations. In this article, we research the relations between profiles of multiple intelligence and how employees assess their organisation as supporting creativeness. Multiple intelligences theory is important because it takes a more humanistic approach to skills, abilities and talents, in recognising that there is more to a human than the skills appreciated in classical g-theory. We are interested in whether different types of people look differently upon the organisation in this regard. Special attention is given to employees whose  multiple intelligence profile is higher than required for their job, a misfit inducing risk for chronic relative underperformance, and how this misfit relates to the assessment of the work environment.
Data collection was done in a large institute for mental health care in the Netherlands. On a voluntary basis, employees were assessed on their personal multiple intelligences profile using the MIDAS® questionnaire. They simultaneously assessed their organisation on supporting creativity, using the KEYS® to Creativity and Innovation questionnaire. The data were analysed in three ways (1) by correlating the values of their multiple intelligence with the assessment on creative climate; for this 189 records could be used, (2) by computing the risk of chronic relative underperformance, and correlating this with creativity climate; for which 147 records of mental health workers remained for the analysis; and (3) investigating whether there was a difference in scores when the results were grouped by highest or lowest intelligence.
Results show that there is mild support for our expectation that multiple intelligences matter and that employees with profiles that are high on intelligences not required for the job assess the work environment as less beneficial for creative output. It is concluded that organisations (which consist of a spectrum of differently profiled humans) may benefit from taking into account these differences within their workforce. Limitations to the study design are also discussed.