MBTI, DISC, Learning Styles, Enneagram

8 Mar

My guess is most everyone reading this has taken an assessment of some kind.  My burning question… did you make any life enhancing choices based on the information?

Personally I am a huge fan of assessments, and, they scare me.  Well the assessment doesn’t scare me – the users do.  I have seen too many well-intended HR people or trainers use assessment to pigeonhole people or label them.  “You’re an ISTJ?  Go sit in the corner and work, you’re not a people person!”  For anyone that has been abused by an assessment process, I apologize.

Even if you’re not currently a fan of assessment – I’m going to ask you to consider my argument FOR assessments.  If you are a fan, or at least a willing participant, do you get the full value?  Follow the rationale…

“Top performers extract 3 – 5 times more information from feedback then average performers.” (The quote is from IHHP, a super groovy company I have the privilege of working with.  If you’re into Emotional Intelligence check them out www.IHHP.com.)  Back to my point… If a top performer and an average performer were each given the exact same feedback, a top performer would learn more from the information.   Let’s apply this to assessments.

Starting with a low performer… “See, this is just how I am!”  Assessment results tend to be justification for not playing well with others.  “Now that you know who I am, get over it – I can’t change.”

An average performer will consider their results and often learn a lot about themselves; their preferences, tendencies, how and why they behave the way they do and try to adjust some of the behaviors that are career limiting and relationship stunting.  That’s all good stuff!

However, a top performer will mine the full value of an assessment.  They’ll do the same great work as the average performer in terms of becoming aware of and monitoring what they learned about themselves – that is step one.  Then, a top performer will seek understanding about others; their preferences and the ways they do things.  They understand that for others, doing things in a different way is as natural to them as your way is to you.  The top performer will put themselves in others shoes and try to see the world from their perspective.  They will consider what it feels like for that co-worker, boss, employee, spouse, friend, or family member to have to live and work with YOU!

Learning more about yourself and others preferences does not mean you have to change who you are – to the contrary – it helps you understand your natural abilities and strengths.  The key is to understand how others function at their best and, how to bring out the best in one another.

Today’s point of choice…dust off your old assessments, or take some new ones, be a top performer.  What can you learn about yourself and equally as important what can you learn about being in relationship with others?

If you’re interested, I created a Quick Reference Guide for 13 assessment tools while working on my Masters.   It’s only 2 pages CLICK HERE.

One Response to “MBTI, DISC, Learning Styles, Enneagram”

  1. Gordon Thomas March 18, 2012 at 8:36 pm #

    Sue,

    We just finished having staff complete Strength Finders. We are having a great time. What I love most about assessments with staff is that it hightens awareness that we are all different and that it is good to talk about how we work together.

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