...at the recent ONM retreat about the accuracy with which two tools seem to nail us. The Maier Briggs personality types (INFJ here) and our most recent experience: taking the test associated with Strengths Based Leadership. This thing was a little spooky. I thought the questions silly, the process a waste of time, and told my boss so in not quite so many words. Then I read the results....
I was the only one in our group who had strengths exclusively in a single category, that area being strategic thinking (intellection, input, strategic, learning and context). The descriptors that came my way:
You describe reading as a pleasure, not a chore...you gain insights and acquire information..you can talk about complicated topics by breaking down the important points...you may prefer to let someone else engage people in small talk...you routinely dog-ear pages, underline key ideas, scribble notes in the margin for easily locating them again (you should see the condition of my books!)...you offer unique perspectives on events, proposals, people..you tend to identify a goal and numerous ways of reaching it...you reconfigure factual information in ways that reveal trends (I'd say: discloses another way of looking at something that gives insight into the topic)...you always want to know more...you automatically commit certain words to memory...your curiosity is not easily satisfied...by nature you include some uncommon, technical words in your vocabulary...you tend to hold people's attention...you resist spending the majority of your time on topics that are not in line with your native abilities...you may be a solo performer...you love to gather all kinds of information...fascination with history and the past...you examine historical events and study the lives of people involved in them.
Well, um, yeah. As Pr. Curtis said: the test rather nails it. The challenge with the assessment is to understand the strengths of your over all team of co-workers and then how to not waste time "fixing" the weaknesses but leveraging the strengths and allowing other co-workers strengths to address areas where you are more challenged. Sandy and I actually had this worked out basically sometime ago. We joke about it, but it's true: Bowers - anything to do with numbers; Weedon - anything to do with words. Works like a charm!
Anyway, the whole exercise really did prove interesting and helpful.