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MBTI Facts & Common Criticisms

Oct 2, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

Written by Patrick Kerwin, MBA, NCC, MBTI Master Practitioner You’ve probably heard about the Myers-Briggs assessment, and perhaps have even read an article online that criticizes the MBTI assessment, which made you question the assessment and its validity. The purpose of the below is to help you answer some of the questions you might have about the MBTI tool by addressing some of the most common criticisms and misconceptions. A BRIEF LOOK BACK In order to address the criticisms and misconceptions of the MBTI assessment, it’s helpful to understand the development of the assessment over time. The MBTI assessment has a history spanning more than 75 years, and for more than 40 years has been available for use and application by organizations, educational institutions, government agencies, MBTI practitioners, and individuals in order to understand and make constructive use of personality type differences. Today, the MBTI assessment is used in 115 countries, is available in 29 languages, has been used by 88 of the Fortune 100 within the past five years, and is taken by millions of people worldwide. The creation of today’s MBTI assessment is a complex and thorough endeavor: carefully developing items, gathering representative samples on which to test those items, analyzing items to ensure that they work for diverse samples of people, testing data for statistical integrity, and more. But the origin of the MBTI assessment stems from the work of Katharine Briggs (1875–1968), a lifelong writer and student of character analysis. Largely from reading biographies and studying the personalities of their subjects, Briggs created a framework for understanding personality type and developed her own system of typology around the time of World War I.1 In 1923, Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung published his seminal work on personality types, Psychological Types, in English.2 Jung, long considered one of the founders of modern-day psychology, proposed a theory of personality types derived from his observations and research. After reading and studying Jung’s work, Briggs realized that it closely resembled her own framework but was much more developed. Briggs subsequently abandoned her framework and focused more fully on Jung’s theory of psychological types. During World War II, Briggs’s daughter Isabel Myers (1897–1980), long an admirer of her mother’s work, became interested in finding a way of making practical use of personality differences and thus began her quest to create a personality indicator. In 1943, the first version of the MBTI assessment was developed.3 Over the next...

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PeopleFWD 2018: Where Business Leaders and HR Luminaries Learn How to Help Their Employees Excel and Organizations Achieve

Aug 30, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

When the COO of Facebook calls your presentation on workplace culture “the most important document ever to come out of the Valley,” you’re probably onto something. Patty McCord spent 14 years as Chief Talent Officer at Netflix crafting a high-performing culture that helped transform them from a start-up DVD rental company to the most valuable media company in the world (even surpassing Disney). Want to hear about how she did it? PeopleFWD 2018 is a premiere event for HR professionals and the business leaders that work alongside them. Taking place October 17-18, 2018 in the San Francisco Bay Area, the conference will feature opening keynote speaker Patty McCord along with a host of inspiring people development and industry experts, including: Mary B. Young, Principal Researcher, Human Capital, The Conference Board Stacia Sherman Garr, Principal Analyst, RedThread Research Celine Burgle, Program Lead, Talent, Learning & Leadership, SAP Sinead Collins, HR Director, Kellogg Company Marion McGovern, Founder, M Squared Consulting Wayne F. Cascio, Robert H. Reynolds Chair in Global Leadership, Univ. of Colorado “In our always-on culture, the workplace must accommodate what it demands from us,” says McCord. “If you can flex your culture to match the needs of employees, you’ll get the best performance out of them. You remove the stressors that would otherwise be roadblocks to high performance.” PeopleFWD 2018 promises insights and practical solutions to address today’s changing world of work. Attendees will learn about organizational trends from experts on the front lines of business transformation and be free to choose from three tracks of rich content: Engage and Develop (for HR professionals), Develop and Perform (for Line-of-Business managers) and Perform and Transform (for Senior Business Leaders). To maximize the learning experience, interactive pre-conference workshops are being offered and will deliver application-based solutions to enhance change management skills, strengthening team trust, dealing with conflict, better understanding the impact of individual needs in the workplace, and more. Workshops include: Getting the Best from Your People Embracing Change: Leveraging the Power of Personality to Support Change Practical Tips for Managers to Build Trusting Relationships Mixing it Up: How to Handle Workplace Conflict Differently “Your people are the most valuable and most remarkable part of your organization. Great leaders know this and know how to bring out the best in their people. So we’re bringing them together leaders to share their insights on how to address the toughest people issues facing...

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We’re All Innovators Pt II: Bringing the Vision to Fruition

Jul 2, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

By Sherrie Haynie, Director of US Professional Services In my last post we talked about how different types innovate in different ways, and are at their best during different phases (a la Damian Killen in Type and Innovation) of the innovation process. Those preferring NP tend to be better at the “discover” phase, and are great at generating ideas; Those preferring NJ excel in the “decide” phase, and apply their innovative skills to choosing the right direction and developing a strategy for making it happen; people who prefer SP come alive during the “define” phase, where they hone and refine the strategy; and finally, in the “deliver” phase is where those preferring SJ ‘deliver the goods’ so to speak and figure out ways to improve whatever is going on. Combined, these contributions from different personality types (when played out right) can give us something fantastic. But, once we dive into the innovation process with other people, the pieces don’t always just fall in place. It’s human nature that we often focus on our contributions, and don’t always recognize the difficulty or value of those who are contributing in other ways. Understanding of MBTI personality type can help us fully appreciate how each person contributes to the innovation process, and that each part of it is equally critical. Planning the ultimate summer vacation takes all types For example, if someone who prefers NP is brainstorming ideas for next summer’s vacation with her SJ preferring husband, she will likely be generating a lot more options and thus come to the conclusion that she is more invested in the idea than he is. However, in the long run, she may find that he’s every bit as invested in the idea, because when they actually hit the road he’ll be coming up with all kinds of ways that they can make the most out of their trip. Of course on the flip side, once they’re on the road he may be tempted to think that he’s more invested than she is, because at that point he’s applying more of his innovation skills! But if they’re aware of type, they can each take a step back and say “you know, her idea to go to Prague was a stroke of genius,” and “the trip just wouldn’t have been the same if he hadn’t applied his creativity to our itinerary.” When people butt their innovative...

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We’re All Innovators…But We Do It According to Type

Jun 26, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

By Sherrie Haynie, Director of US Professional Services We’d all like to think of ourselves as ‘innovative’, wouldn’t we? At its core, being innovative involves somehow being able to come up with original ideas and apply them in ways that have some benefit, either for ourselves or for someone else. It’s certainly pertinent to your career and livelihood, but it just as equally at play in all aspects of live, whether it be redesigning your house, managing your money raising your kids, or making a good impression with someone on a first date. There are opportunities to innovate all around us, and the more innovative we are, the more we’ll uncover opportunities for success and happiness. Yet, many of us do not view ourselves as innovative, and, we certainly don’t always see the innovative potential in the people around us. MBTI personality type can help us tap our potential by helping us see the value in our unique approaches to innovation. Resisting a limited view of innovation: Hail to the King! Because innovation is so central to the human experience, it’s too bad that we all too often have a limited view of what it means to be innovative. We often equate it with generating completely new, big ideas. But if you think about it, much of what we think about as innovative doesn’t fit that bill. Facebook wasn’t the first social media platform, the iPhone wasn’t the first interactive cell phone, and Elvis Presley most definitely did not invent Rock and Roll. In all three of these cases, the innovators at question added their 2 cents (or in some cases 2 dollars) to previously existing forms to create something that, while not wholly new, nevertheless gave the world something that it didn’t have. Elvis may not have invented Rock and Roll, but he sure delivered it like no one had before! What part of the ‘Innovation Cycle’ gets your gears turning? Innovation has a lot of moving parts, each of which is crucial to the desired end result of coming up with something cool and new. And if you think about innovation as a cycle or process, different personality types tend to apply their innovative skills at different points in the process. Damian Killen and Gareth Williams nicely summarized this concept in Type and Innovation, which identifies  4 phases of innovation: Discover, Decide, Define and Deliver.   It...

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Help Our Research Team & Be First to Receive Study Results

Jun 19, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

Have you wondered if your Myers-Briggs personality type influences your well-being at work? Or does your type influence how you improve your well-being? To help answer these questions, we’ve put together an international research project investigating well-being at work and the MBTI assessment. And we’re asking for your help. To participate in the survey, you need to 1) know your verified MBTI personality type, 2) be currently employed, and 3) have 15 minutes to spend answering a few questions online. The survey asks about your well-being at work and some questions about how you manage your well-being at work and outside of work. Your responses are extremely important for better understanding MBTI type and well-being, as well as global trends in workplace well-being in our rapidly changing world. We realize you’re busy and as a thank you for completing this survey, you’ll be the first to receive a summary of our findings from this research. Please make sure to type in your email address at the very beginning of the survey in order to receive the research findings once they’re ready to publish. The research findings will summarize three years of well-being trends, along with recommendations for improving well-being for each MBTI type. To begin the survey please click this link: Thank you for your consideration, Richard C. Thompson Senior Director of Research CPP,...

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Leveraging Your Personality Type for Stress Management During the Job Interview Process

May 30, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

As I sit down to write this story on how the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) tool can help us deal with stress during the interview process, I can’t help but feel a bit stressed myself. I need to get ready for a workshop later this week. Each time I’ve attempted to sit down and prepare this morning, my brain has filled up with a litany of other things to which I need to attend. My plate is plenty full, and yet I keep adding more portions to it. Then, I realize that so much of how I deal with everyday stress relates to my own personality type preferences. My guess is that your stress, and how you cope with it, relates to your personality type as well. We all deal with stressful situations. Add the pressure of interviewing for a job to your daily stress and it is easy to get completely overwhelmed. The way you deal with stress is usually different from the way others with different personality types deal with stress. What stresses me might be a piece of cake for you, and vice versa. Below, we’ll explore how stress relates to your own MBTI personality type preferences, as well as some tips to help you manage your stress. Extraverted Sensing (ESTP and ESFP) People with these preferences tend to rely most on understanding and presenting information in a sequential, “here and now” way. As they start to get stressed, they might overdo this approach, obsessing over details that previously weren’t important. Further, they might spend so much time on taking in these facts that they neglect to make any decisions based on said facts. Preparing for an interview might turn in to obsessing over every detail of the interview process. This could lead you to spend time on things that won’t matter in the end at the expense of the important things that do matter. If, when you are finally in the interview room, you start sharing a load of irrelevant details, it could come across as a bit too much to the interviewer. How to Handle It: When you start obsessing over details that previously weren’t important to you, stop where you are and list out all the things on your mind. Then, go through your list and cut half of them out. Then cut the list in half again. This will allow you to...

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For an Authentic, Effective Job Interview, You Must First Understand Your Own Personality Type (Part II)

May 23, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

In my previous blog, I discussed how you can leverage your preferences for either introversion or extraversion – preferences based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) – to present an authentic version of yourself during a job interview. Today, I’ll dive a little deeper and talk about how to leverage the other aspects of your personality type to improve your odds of getting a job that is an excellent fit for you. Before I begin, it’s important to remember the concept of “flexing” discussed in my previous article. Flexing is about honoring first and foremost who you are, but also flexing or stretching to the other side when a situation calls for behaviors that might be a little outside of your comfort zone. Sensing vs. Intuition: The Kinds of Information We Like and Trust Being aware of how you, and others, take in information can help you use the “right” words during an interview. Now, you likely won’t know your interviewer’s personality type preferences, but you can use both sensing and intuition language during the interview and then look for understanding from your interviewer. Remember, honor your preference and then flex as needed. If you prefer sensing, you likely take in and present information in a sequential step-by-step way. As you are answering questions in an interview (or in life), watch to see how that information is received. If the person is tracking, they will likely give you non-verbal signals – such as nods – as well as a few verbal cues that they understand along the way. If the person is not tracking, you will likely see an impatient demeanor, which could indicate that you’re giving too many specifics in your answers. This may mean your interviewer prefers intuition and would rather you stop giving so much detail and summarize. Quick Tip: Giving facts and details can serve you well during an interview. Start an answer with your top three points, and then ask the interviewer if they would like more detail. If you prefer intuition, you probably take in and present information in a “big picture” way. As you answer questions in an interview (or in life), look for your interlocutor’s “elevens” (furrowed lines in the forehead) or questioning eyes. This could mean your interviewer prefers sensing and is not getting the sequential and practical answer they’d like from you. You may be jumping from theme to...

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For an Authentic, Effective Job Interview, You Must First Understand Your Own Personality Type

May 16, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

I remember my first job interview. It was a long time ago. I was very young and had yet to learn how to be true to myself. I was trying to get a job for the summer in between undergraduate and graduate school, and remember thinking to myself: “Answer how they [my interviewers] want you to answer, no matter what.” I got that job, and at first I was thrilled. Once I began to do the work, however, I hated it. I couldn’t wait for the summer to end! What could I have done better? How could I have given a better interview to get not just a job, but the job I wanted? Presenting your true, authentically developed self is perhaps the most important part of your interview technique. Knowing who you are and understanding how that helps you – or might not help you – in your work and life allows you to walk into any interview for any job and authentically present yourself to the employer. From there, the employer can decide if you and the job will truly be a good match. More importantly, knowing who you are allows you to decide if the job and the workplace environment are really the right fit for you. One way to understand who you are is to learn more about your personality type preferences. One tool many people use to do this is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). You have likely heard about the MBTI before. Some of what you’ve heard is true, and some isn’t. I teach people how to use the MBTI competently and ethically, and I am amazed by how many people who think they know what the MBTI tool is really have no idea. Understanding Ourselves Without Labeling or Limiting Ourselves In short, the MBTI gives us some understanding of how we take in information and how we make decisions. That’s really it. The MBTI is not meant to label or limit anyone in any way. For example and in spite of what many think, there is no such thing as an “extravert” or an “introvert.” Instead, the MBTI tool is trying to help us see whether we have a preference for extraversion or introversion, along with other preferences. There is a difference, and it is huge. When we talk about extraverts or introverts, we limit people. When we see it as a...

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Effects and Causes of Conflict Among Employees

May 8, 2018 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

By Mark Taylor This article originally appeared in HRZone. You may read the same article on the original publishing website here.    Do you know what it takes to create a productive team? According to research published in the Harvard Business Review, a workplace characterized by positive and “virtuous” practices is able to form a productive team. Such practices, the report went on to say, include caring for your colleagues as friends, treating one another with gratitude, respect, trust and integrity, providing support whenever needed, offering compassion and kindness when you see your colleague struggling with something and more.   However, a team becomes even more productive when they avoid blaming each other and forgive mistakes. But is all this achievable in the real world?   Effect of Employee Conflict on Businesses According to a study on workplace conflict, commissioned by CPP Inc, publishers of the Myers-Briggs Assessment and the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument, in 2008, US employees spent 2.8 hours per week dealing with conflict. What’s worse was that these hours translated into the wastage of 385 million working days and approximately $359 billion in paid hours, when calculated on the basis of average hourly earnings of $17.95.   It was also added in the study that around 85% of the employees had to deal with conflict to some extent, and spend a significant amount of time managing such conflicts, while 29% US employees do so “always” or “frequently.”   But how do conflicts amongst employees affect the entire organization? The fact is that a conflict never occurs by itself. It is accompanied by a lot of time spent in gossiping, protecting turf, retaliating, taking sides, planning one’s defence and navigating the drama. This is that precious time which the employees would otherwise have spent on their designated tasks in the company, for which they have been hired. Things can get even worse when two employees in conflict recruit other employees to take sides. This encourages the involvement of the entire organization where their presence is not required.   However, according to a blog post by Abel HR, most conflicts can be prevented, thereby saving a business’ time, easing frustration and regaining productivity. Having some fun at the workplace, giving positive feedback, immediately reaching out to the HR department, and respecting differences are some of the many ways workplaces can keep the positive energy going.   And to...

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Confidence, Extraversion & Understanding – What Helps You The Most?

Dec 12, 2017 in MBTI Talk | 0 comments

Written in collaboration with John Hackston, Head of Thought Leadership at OPP Politicians are known for their confidence, but sometimes this can get them into hot water (I’m sure that you can think of some recent examples). You can probably think of a time where you saw someone who seemed to use confidence to cover up a lack of ability. But confidence isn’t just important for politicians, as this article by Laura Barton points out. Women tend to be less confident in their abilities than men. In fact, studies have shown that less able men are the group most likely to overestimate their abilities. Are Extraverts more confident than Introverts? Confidence isn’t the same thing as Extraversion, but they’re often mistaken for one another. In Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, Susan Cain cites a study by the Kellogg School of Management, finding that in an average large meeting, three people do 70% of the talking. Those three people aren’t necessarily the most confident people in the meeting, but by their saying more they will tend to seem more confident. Their ideas and suggestions get more airtime. And good ideas that others may have are less likely to be heard. It can even seem that the people not doing the talking are disengaged, less creative, or less intelligent. Humans, chimps and theory of mind One of the things that sets us and chimpanzees apart from all other animals is our possession of a theory of mind. Theory of mind is made up of two things: the ability to credit mental states to ourselves the ability to understand that others have beliefs, desires, intentions, and perspectives that are different from our own. However, this sometimes means that we judge others unfairly. To correct this, it we can boost our self-awareness as well as our understanding of other people. And one of the best ways to do this is to understand what makes us tick. We need to understand our personality. There are many exercises you can do to boost self-awareness and assessments you can take to understand your personality better. The Myers-Briggs Type IndicatorMyers-Briggs Type Indicator ®(MBTI®) assessment is one that gives us an effective way of improving our self-awareness, as well as starting to understand others. The MBTI model seems simple. After all, it’s just four dimensions of personality. But it builds into...

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