Increasingly, Canadian businesses are asking their employees and potential hires to participate in some kind of personality testing. These can be a tool to assist in:
Here's a quick look at some of the most commonly used personality tests in workplaces across Canada:
The DiSC Model of Behavior was first proposed by Harvard physiological psychologist William Mouton Marston in 1928. He was interested in using practical explanations to help people understand and manage their experiences and relationships. (Source)
The DiSC test will determine which of these quadrants best matches your personal style and is most likely to be your natural behavioural choice:
Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI)
The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument is a system to measure and describe thinking preferences in people, developed by General Electric's William "Ned" Herrmann in 1976. Building on the pioneering brain research of Sperry, MacLean, Bogen and Gazzanaga, Hermann determined that the brain has 4 distinct and specialized structures. (Source)
First working with EEG scans and eventually questionnaires, Hermann identified 4 distinct types of thinking, each roughly corresponding to one of the brain structures:
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator builds on the theories of Carl Jung and allows people to be categorized into 16 distinctive personality types based on their preferences in each of the 4 dichotomies specified in Jung's theory. (Source)
Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother Katharine Briggs created a psychometric questionnaire that delineates a person's preferences in these 4 areas, which was first published in 1962:
Note: We recommend a book called "Do What You Are" by Paul Tieger and Barbara Barron-Tieger, which applies Myers-Briggs theory to the workplace. You can learn more at www.personalitytype.com
Donald O. Clifton, Marcus Buckingham, and the team at the Gallup Organization introduced the first version of their online personality assessment, Strengthsfinder, in the 2001 management book Now, Discover Your Strengths: How To Develop Your Talents and Those of People You Manage.
The group determined that there are 34 distinct strengths that a person can have and their tool determines which of the 34 are your top 5 talents.
Their theory advocates that businesses ensure that teams and departments should be well-rounded and intentionally include people with a wide variety of strengths and that individual employees should be encouraged to further develop their strengths, rather than their areas of weakness.
Strengthsfinder theory continued to be applied in Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie. They grouped the 34 unique themes into 4 areas: Relationship Building, Influencing, Executing, and Strategic Thinking.
Do you use personality tests in your workplace? Do you find them a valuable hiring tool or do you use them exclusively for training and development purposes? Share your thoughts in the Comments.
Are you having any challenges with your employees that you would benefit from some advice from experienced HR professionals? Why not contact Anna Aceto-Guerin, CHRL at firstname.lastname@example.org or (519) 624-0800 today?
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