The Art of Dealing With People: Personality Tests

Introduction

Personality tests have been used for different reasons in the workplace set-up. One of the most common uses of the tests is in the recruitment process. Human resource departments have used the tests to pick out the best candidates for the job. Ideally, personality tests are done at the very initial stages of the interview process. This goes to show how important the tests are in ensuring companies hire the right people. Two of the most common tests used today are the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator and Big Five Model tests.

These tests have various dichotomies that can be referred to as personality clusters. Usami et al. (2016) argue that the tests offer both the individual and the company a chance to understand themselves better. Indeed, individuals are nowadays asked to take personality tests on their own. Knowing one’s personality is essential in pairing an individual with the right company. It is equally important for individuals to get employment in companies that reflect their own personalities as it is for the organizations themselves.

One can argue that personality tests are more valuable than ever today due to the diversity of both individual and company personalities. The fact that organizational culture has been identified as a crucial element in the productivity of a company makes personality tests more relevant in the workplace. There are several advantages of hiring employees with similar personalities. One such advantage is that the employees will work well together. Secondly, management will have an easier time implementing strategies and policies as the same personality clusters are expected to react the same way to change.

Despite the advantages, it is often difficult to find a company whose employees have the same personality clusters. Due to this, it is important for both management and the company human resource department to train employees on the different types of personalities in the workplace, and suggest ways people can tolerate each other for the benefit of the organization. This essay presents personal data on a personality test that was done prior to as per the requirements of the assignment. Additionally, the paper offers a discussion of the types of personality tests, the tools and concepts associated with personality tests, and strategies people use to deal with different personalities.

Analysis of Results

I agree with the results realized in the personality test. One of the reasons for this is the fact that the test is a reflection of how I view myself. For example, I always compete the tasks I am given better than other people do. Towards this end, I tend to be very competitive. A high level of confidence ensures that I do not get scared of challenges and I always put as much effort as I can into any job I do.

However, I disagree with the statement that I believe that I am more intelligent than most people are. Whereas I do believe I am intelligent, I do not compare my cognitive abilities with others. I am a firm believer that each person is gifted differently. Indeed, there are situations I would thrive in better than other people. However, there are other instances where other people prove more capable than me.

I fully agree with the depictions of my personality as an achievement-driven person. I have developed clear SMART goals. SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (Bexelius, Carlberg & Löwing 2018). These goals define what I want to achieve and where I want to steer my career. Additionally, I am ambitious and always put the effort into everything I do. I strive for excellence in all my tasks. I believe that my personality is best suited for a fast-changing and highly creative position. I am not only willing to achieve set goals and objectives, but I am also willing to put as much effort as possible to achieve the said goals and objectives within the shortest time possible and attain maximum benefits or productivity with my efforts.

Opinion About Personality Tests

I believe that personality tests are a self-measure of things one can and cannot do. Such tests normally offer the user several general statements that they believe describe their personalities best (Usami et al. 2016). I agree with Pelt, van der Linden and Born’s (2018) argument that these instruments (personality tests) can be very helpful in the initial interview stages. Every company seeks to get suitable employees.

The human resource department, however, also has to make sure that the candidates can work well within the organizational culture despite their level of experience and education. These personality tests can help the HR department choose such employees. The same is applicable to a specific position. The personality tests can reveal whether the person seeking to fill the given position can indeed add value to both the department and the organization.

The personality tests are also important as they bring together people with the same mindset. My personal results can be used to explain how working together with people of similar thinking can be beneficial. As stated, I put in a lot of effort in everything I do to ensure excellence. Therefore, working with individuals who do not put as much effort as they can in their roles can be challenging. This will especially be challenging in instances of teamwork.

Therefore, working with like-minded people will not only be easy but also ensure maximum productivity. Indeed, Usami et al. (2016) explain that companies that use personality tests to pick out employees have lower turnover. This can be due to the fact that the employees understand each other as their personalities are similar. Such a company will have a better working environment than one that does not use these personality tests (Pelt, van der Linden & Born 2018).

Personality Tool Assessments and Concepts

There are various types of personality tests that are used in the workplace. However, two of the most commonly used tests are the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator test and the Big Five Model test. The Myer-Briggs Type Indicator test allows people to learn how others perceive the world around them (Rashid & Duys 2015). It is important to note that the test has been used to note whether a person’s view of his or her environment is suitable for a specific organization.

One can argue that how a person perceives other people determines whether they will work well together. It is important to note that there is no wrong personality in the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator. Each personality has its advantages and disadvantages. For example, someone that records a high percentage in the judging dichotomy can be very good with details. However, the same person can be rigid in thought as well.

The four dichotomies give a general overview of the different personalities. Indeed, in as much as many people prefer to work with people with the same personality, it is important for staff to learn that having a different personality is not a bad thing. This is because they will interact with people with the other three dichotomies at one point or the other. Indeed, companies thrive on partnerships and networking. Thus, employees that understand the four dichotomies, and their strengths, will be in a better position to sell their ideas to other people for the benefit of the company.

The second tool is mentioned in the Big Five Model test. This test offers five descriptions of personalities for employees. The five descriptions are agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, openness to experience, and extraversion. These descriptions have several words that are grouped under them to further describe the person’s personality. The idea behind the test is that there are some words that are used together when describing a personality.

For example, a person that is described as ‘always prepared’ cannot be ‘messy’ and so forth. The Big Five Model is a great tool for the human resource department as it also identifies the company’s personality. For example, a company that falls under the extraversion category is very energetic and social. Thus, the organizational culture supports these two elements. It is important to also note that the different descriptions also refer to the things the personality values in life.

For example, the description “openness to experience” is often associated with people that love creative arts. Thus, employees looking to work in a creative position should identify with this category if they are to be suitable. Towards this end, however, the test is used to determine whether the person is suitable for the position and not necessarily the company. On the same note, the description conscientiousness is normally used to describe people that enjoy systematic approaches. One advantage of such people is that they follow rules and regulations.

Best Strategies

As mentioned, it is important for employees to be knowledgeable about the different types of personalities they can engage within the workplace. This will make it easier for people of different personalities to still work together effectively. There are several strategies that both the organization and the employees can use to tolerate the different personalities in the workplace. It is critical for the organization to conduct training of personalities.

One can argue that knowledge is the first crucial element of understanding how different personalities can work together. The training will ensure that staff understands each other’s differences and how these differences work together for the benefit of the company. The training should not only focus on the different personalities but also on how the employees can benefit from the strengths of each personality. The human resource department should be involved in the training as they use personality tests in the recruitment process.

A second strategy that can be used is the use of a positive criticism approach. There are some people that do not like to be criticized. However, the importance of criticism in the workplace cannot be overstated. However, criticism should be used to improve an employee’s performance, and not to demean him or her. Having said this, individuals have to learn how to give constructive criticism. One way of doing this is by starting the conversation with positive things about the employee. The involved can tell the employee about his or her strengths and then give ways the employee can improve on his or her weak areas. When giving criticism, it is important for the involved to give as many examples as possible. This will give the employee enough context to enable change.

It is common to find new employees struggling to understand the different personalities in their workplace. Apart from the training mentioned, it is also important for such new employees to inquire on how the different people they interact with on a day-to-day basis like to work. A personal example can be given to explain this strategy further. I took a part-time job as a teacher assistant that involved organizing materials for the teacher and also making some appointments for her.

Initially, she felt frustrated by my work ethic. To ensure we were on good terms, I decided to ask her what I had been doing wrong, and how she likes to work. It was then that I realized she preferred to be updated only once a week. She did not like that I asked her for permission to re-organize her schedule. She felt that I should be able to effectively handle her calendar, which she checked on a daily basis.

Conclusion

In conclusion, personality tests are very important in the workplace. The tests are used to identify the best candidates for the job. It is important to note that personality tests can be used to identify the right candidate as per the requirements of the position advertised and the person’s suitability within the confines of organizational culture. I undertook a personality test and I agree with the results that were given.

The results showed that I am confident and achievement-driven. Looking at my personal achievements, I can agree that indeed I have become more confident in my ability to work on different assignments. This has also made me competitive and aggressive, as I am not afraid of failing. Additionally, I am achievement-driven as I always work with the end in mind. I ensure to make SMART goals for all my tasks. Indeed, the two traits complement each other, as a confident person cannot also be poor at making goals.

There are very many personality tests that are currently being used by human resource departments to identify the best candidates for their organizations. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the Big Five Model tests are the most common. The choice in which personality type a company should use is solely determined by the company management. Whereas there are some studies that compare the different tests, one can argue that both serve the same purpose.

It is crucial to point out that there are no right and wrong personalities. This is due to the fact that each personality has its advantages and disadvantages. Arguably, people cannot change their whole personality. Understanding the different personalities is important in ensuring productivity in the workplace. Indeed, there are companies that hire people who have similar personalities. Despite this, it is still important that each employee is trained on the importance of respecting and tolerating other personalities.

Reference List

Berzelius, A, Carlberg, EB & Löwing, K 2018, ‘Quality of goal setting in pediatric rehabilitation – a SMART approach’, Child: Care, Health & Development, vol. 44, no. 6, pp. 850–856.

Pelt, DHM, van der Linden, D & Born, MP 2018, ‘How emotional intelligence might get you the job: the relationship between trait emotional intelligence and faking on personality tests’, Human Performance, vol. 31, no. 1, pp. 33–54.

Rashid, GJ & Duys, DK 2015, ‘Counselor cognitive complexity: correlating and comparing the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator with the role category questionnaire’, Journal of Employment Counseling, vol. 52, no. 2, pp. 77–86.

Usami, S, Sakamoto, A, Naito, J & Abe, Y 2016, ‘Developing pairwise preference-based personality test and experimental investigation of its resistance to faking effect by item response model’, International Journal of Testing, vol. 16, no. 4, pp. 288–309.