A Personality Test is NOT a Validated Talent Instrument

a_personality_test_is_not_a_a_validated_talent_insrumentPersonality tests are all the rage!

I recently read that 60-70% of Americans today will take a personality test as part of a job application process. Gaining in popularity, personality tests are even used in career planning for those not in the workforce yet as well. Just last week my daughter was given a personality test by a college professor hoping to help his students better understand their potential and how they might match up with a variety of journalism career paths.

In general, people like to have information when making decisions, and that’s a good thing.As long as that information is accurate and helpful.Many of the assessments out there are not.

The Wall Street Journal recently printed two articles related to personality tests (see what I mean – it’s a hot topic!). After reading both “Decoding Workplace Personality Tests” and “Are Workplace Personality Tests Fair?”我意识到,大多数人没有观点和经验来实现经过验证的人才工具和……好吧……一切之间的巨大差异。因此,我认为我会与您分享一些差异。

There are five main differences between most assessments on the market and a validated talent instrument such as the销售人才面试以及我专门研究的利润中心经理面试:

1.The most obvious difference can be found in what each of these instruments measure. A Personality Test is self-reported and gives users insight into a person’s “typical” behaviors and preferences whereas a Talent Assessment measures an individual’s potential or aptitude to achieve optimal or maximal performance in a specific role.

  • The average assessment描述人格特征,重点是一种称为“五个因素模型”的心理模型,该模型定义了人格的五个基本维度:开放性,良心性,外向性,愉快性和神经质。研究证明了personality traits have an extremely small relationship to performance and experts like Fred Morgeson, a management professor and organizational psychologist at Michigan State University, will tell you that the connection is "much lower than the field has led us to believe."

  • A优质的人才工具on the other hand is built to measure the intensity of natural ability in the areas that are most important to success in a specific job. It will also predict a candidate’s success in that job and provide an employer with detailed coaching strategies to help the individual maximize their talents over time and work around any weaknesses that might get in the way.

2. Another huge difference includes the degree to which the instrument is able to predict success in a specific job or industry.

  • The average assessment本质上是非常“一个尺寸的人”。同一工具用于评估各种工作的适用性。

  • A quality talent assessmentis highly job-specific and built by studying top performers in the industry and comparing their behaviors with those that struggle in the same job. A strong assessment is therefore able to zero in on the specific behaviors that have a proven correlation with success in the position.


  • The average assessment由计算机管理,并提供“强制选择”问题,例如给麦当劳的候选人:选择最能描述您的以下一个:“当有很多问题需要照顾时很难开朗”或“有时候,我需要推动开始我的工作”

  • A quality talent assessment通常是由认证的人才分析师现场直播的,询问受访者可以将其提出的任何背景。(尽管我要说的是,我最近对计算机的采访给我留下了深刻的印象 - 驱动但高度定制且精确。of the content collected during the interview and look for specific conceptual matches – areas in which the candidate’s responses match those of top performers in the benchmark study.


    • The average assessmentprovides an auto-generated report that might be colorful and chock-full of data, but is often unclear and confusing.

    • A quality talent assessment不仅包括书面报告。这些工具的更大价值在于专家提供的无限人才反馈。The best assessment reviews will include in-depth information about the individual’s strengths and weaknesses, a discussion about their likely fit in a specific position or culture, and strategic coaching recommendations that will guide the manager to help them maximize their talents and continually grow over time.

5. Finally, there is also a large gap between how useful each of these assessments are in developing people and their talents over time.

  • The average assessmentsprovide a snapshot of an individual’s behavior at that point in time and gives general insight into how they might work with others.

  • A quality talent assessment不仅可以在减少无意间歧视的同时预测与工作相关的绩效,而且还将提供有关个人的思想,感受和行为的有意义的信息,这些信息可以为管理者提供有关如何随着时间而成长和发展该人的宝贵信息。

Finding, selecting, and hiring highly talented employees is as much a science as it is an art, and fortunately for us there are reliable tools based in science at our fingertips today. Of course I will always advise you to follow your instincts and consider personality and likeability in your hiring decisions — but never forget the power of talent!


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