M.Sc Thesis

M.Sc StudentKremer Sivan
SubjectThe Interplay between the Dual Performance Goals of
Creativity and Efficiency under Different Goal
DepartmentDepartment of Industrial Engineering and Management
Supervisor PROFESSOR EMERITUS Miriam Erez
Full Thesis textFull thesis text - English Version


The growing emphasis on creativity as reflected in novel and appropriate ideas sometimes overlooks the need to be efficient and meet time and budget constraints (George & Zhou, 2001). This study investigates under what conditions the balance between creativity and efficiency is best maintained. Two studies were conducted: Study-I examined the effects of a dual goal paradigm with different levels of goal specificity on the best simultaneous scores of creativity and efficiency. Participants were 124 students, who were asked to perform a computerized word anagram task, with two sub-goals: a) generate original words; b) maintain certain cost level, as each letter used has a certain cost. There were four goal conditions which varied in their level of specificity. In addition, some personal dispositions were assessed. The results of experiment 1 demonstrated that when one sub-goal was specific and the other one was general performance was significantly higher for the specific than the general goal, hence, creating a trade-off between the two performance measures. Yet, when the two sub-goals were specific and difficult the overall performance level was the lowest, compared to all other conditions, and in contrast to the goal-setting theory. Furthermore, when the two goals were either specific or general, personal dispositions influenced performance: conscientiousness negatively affected creative performance while creative self efficacy had a positive effect on it.

Study-II aimed at testing an additional framing effect which directs attention towards creativity or towards cost effectiveness, when the two sub-goals were equal in their level of specificity. Results of Study-II demonstrated that the framing of efficiency enhanced performance efficiency, but the creativity framing did not have a significant effect on creative performance. However, the overall performance score of both sub-goals was higher under the difficult goal with efficiency framing than with no framing. Implications of these findings will be further discussed.