Measures of Personality



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Measures of Personality

In this paper two very popular personality assessment measures have been studied – (I) the Myers-Briggs tool and (II) the DiSC — Dominance Influence Conscientiousness Steadiness Personal Profile System.


(I) The Myers-Briggs tool:

(i) Development and use of Myers-Briggs tool:

The Meyers-Briggs tool has been the most broadly applied tool to measure personality throughout the world for more than five decades with more than millions of people to deal with the typical requirements of organizations. People applying the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator — MBTI get a personal profile basing on their preferences which categorizes them among the sixteen personality types with each set possessing a unique set of characteristics responsible for the person’s personal approach to communication style, learning methodologies, and work habits. The Meyers-Briggs tool allows the participants to gain a higher self-understanding and the methods with which they interact with other people inclusive of dynamics associated with decision making, problem solving; communication and conflict management. Receiving training with the Myers-Briggs is not only fun and perceptive but can result in useful changes in organizational effectiveness. (Conflict Solutions Ohio: Tools and Products)

(ii) Reliability & Validity of Myers-Briggs tool:

Regarding reliability it can be said that is the manner in which consistently a test determines what it tries to gauge. Consistency is vital since, when something is measured with an instrument more than once, it is expected that the identical answer or something close to it will be the outcome during both the occasion. With the MBTI, one desires the person to arrive at the same type during both times when they take the test. This is known as the test-retest reliability, the type majority of the people care about. (Lawrence; Martin, 2001)

Some inferences regarding reliability of the MBTI are (i) Reliabilities which imply when scores are regarded as continuous scores are as good or better compared to other personality instruments (ii) As regards retest, people emerge with three or four type preferences with identical 75-90 percent of the occasion. (iii) While people alter their type at the time of retest, it is normally on one scale and also in scales in which the preference clearness was low. (iv) It is observed that the reliabilities are rather good across age and racial groups, even though reliabilities on some scales with some groups might be, to some extent lower. The T-F scale seems to possess the minimum reliability among the four scales. Regarding validity, it is extent to which an instrument calibrates what is required to measure and extent to which the entity which the instrument measures has implications. This is crucial because, in case the type is real, then we must be capable of using type to appreciate and predict the behavior of people to a fair extent. Type must help us calculate valuable differences in the values, attitudes and behaviors of various people. Three main categories of data are summarized to prove the validity of MBTI. These are (i) proof for the validity of the four distinct scales. (ii) Proof for the validity of the four preference pairs as dichotomies, and (iii) proof for the validity of whole types or specific combinations of preferences. (Lawrence; Martin, 2001)

(iii) How does Myers-Briggs tool work?

This tool works on the theory of psychological types the essence of which is that much apparently random disparity in behavior is in fact quite systematic and reliable, because of the fundamental differences in the behavior people desire to apply their discernment and judgment. The various concepts in the Myers-Briggs tool are: (i) Favorite world: One’s preference to concentrate on the outer world or one’s self inner world is called Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I). (ii) Information: Does one prefer to concentrate on the core information he takes or does he rather interpret and add meaning. This is known as Sensing (S) or Intuition (N). (iii) Decision: At the time of taking decisions, does one prefer to initially view at logic and consistency or initially look at people and special circumstances. This is known as Thinking (T) or Feeling (F). (iv) Structure: While dealing with the outside world, does one prefer to get things decided or choose to remain open to new information and choices. This is known as Judging (J) or Perceiving (P). Personality types of individuals can be found out while deciding on the preference in each category; one can have his/her self personality type expressed as a code with four letters. Hence 16 personality types can be found out using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator through the type-table as a combination of the four letters. (MBTI Basics: The Myers and Briggs Foundation)

(iv)The circumstances under which test of of Myers-Briggs tool would be indicated:

A serious flaw in the scientific study of personality is the comparative lack of proper measurement operations. Whereas a lot of tests, instruments, and assessment devices are found, each possesses fundamental restrictions. It is often believed that the more incisive techniques are not objective whereas the objective instruments are superficial ones. The significance of bettering the operations for measuring personality cannot be overstated since it has been said with reasons that the history of science could be recorded on the lines of progress made in instrumentation. Similarly in the personality sphere also tests and other devices of measurement constitute the instruments through which systematic data are collected. (Wepman; Heine, 1963)

Understanding one’s personality type as measured by means of Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instrument is able to assist one with career planning at every point from the preference of subjects and majors in school to selecting one’s initial career, to career progression in the particular organization or altering careers at later stages in life. For instance a person having a preference for Introversion might find it better performing research whereas a person who prefers Extraversion might go in for people interaction. (Personality and Careers: The Myers and Briggs Foundation)

(v) The factors the users of of Myers-Briggs tool should consider:

People should consider applying MBTI when contemplating about career change; when one desires to have a better appreciation of one’s personality type or in case one is involved in team building and organizational change. Use of the MBTI can be made to (i) understand personality type and the manner in which one relates and interact with others. (ii) better appreciate personal differences (iii) improve work & personal relationships (iv) create efficient teams (v) find out leadership and management styles and (vi) maximize career choice though a grasp of one’s natural preferences. (Vocational and personality assessment: : Career Development and Employment)

(vi) Usefulness of the Myers-Briggs tool based on research:

The usefulness of the MBTI lies in recognizing and describing eight preferences i.e. extraversion, introversion, sensing, intuiting, thinking, feeling, judging and perceiving and 16 various types. It is through the MBTI assessment that awareness is raised as regards individual styles of collecting information, arriving at decisions and interacting with others. This information encourages an increased understanding of the person and others. The most important benefits are (i) it betters work relationships (ii) it enhances team/workgroup performance (iii) improves communication (iv) helps in finding solution to conflicts (v) has a lasting impact. (The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Assessment: Leadership Solutions for the 21st Century)


(II) The DiSC — Dominance Influence Conscientiousness Steadiness Personal Profile System

(i) Development and use of DiSC Personal Profile System:

DiSC has been developed and used for team building, leadership styles, management development, communication, and performance. It outlines the manner in which people behave while they respond to their environment. It renders important perception into not just one’s behavior but the behavior of others. DiSC is one of the most thriving and extensively applied personal and professional development instruments giving the pioneering approach to enhance self-awareness, relationships, performance, and efficiency, communication, teamwork, and leadership. DiSC is used as a tool to (i) explore one’s interpersonal strengths and potential spheres of improvement (ii) Taking a new look at one’s natural approach while interacting with others (iii) Improving one’s capability to communicate and solve conflict situations so as to improve one’s relationship with others. (iv) Know more regarding the manner in which one manages time and deals with stress (v) Find out what motivates as also de-motivates one, the type of environment one is comfortable with and the circumstances one tends to avoid. (vi) Have thorough understanding regarding one’s natural approach to arriving at decisions and problem solving. (vii) Enhancing the quality of one’s interpersonal relationships. (DiSC Personal Profile System: USGS Leadership Program)

(ii) Reliability & Validity of DiSC Personal Profile System:

Reliability is determined to make sure that the items on a scale correctly show the scale itself. It is usual to calculate the likely reliability of behavioral measurement scales and to state them in terms of the internal consistency reliability calculated by the Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. As regards validity, a lot of different ways are available. One approach is the determination of the extent to which the association among scores symbolize the theory and model on which the instrument is based.  In the DiSC Model, Scales D for Dominance and S for Steadiness are in some extent just opposites. Therefore, it is expected to find that those two scales will rather be inversely correlated. In an identical manner, Scales I for Influence and C for Conscientiousness are also opposite to a certain extent. It is expected to be inversely related. (The DiSC Classic Research Report)

(iii) How does DiSC Personal Profile System work?

DiSC works by providing a non-judgmental language for discovering behavioral problem. It assists people discover behavior across four fundamental proportions. These are (i) Dominance (ii) Influence (iii) Steadiness (iv) Conscientiousness. DiSC works as a multi-level learning instrument that assists individual in assessing to what extent they are capable of utilizing each dimension of behavior in their particular situation. Thereafter the instrument provides feedback in many unique formats. It is the outcome of broad field research and testing thereby offering more choices, greater reliability, and sets the standard for behavioral-based learning. (Product Description: DiSC Classic)

(iv)The circumstances under which the test of DiSC Personal Profile System would be indicated:

Under the following circumstances the test would be indicated (i) Dominance(D): When the environment is seemingly hostile and the person feels more powerful compared to the environment, he will take action to change, fix  or control the situation (ii) Influence(I): On the other hand, when the environment is thought to be favorable and the person feels more powerful compared to the environment, they will take action to urge others to his viewpoint.(iii) Conscientiousness(C) : While the environment is thought to be not favourable and the person feels less powerful compared to the environment, he is will react by framing fixed rules within the situation and strive to abide by them. (iv) Steadiness (S): While the environment is thought to be favorable and the person thinks he is less powerful compared to the environment, he will work to support the circumstance and support others. (DiSC Classic 1.0- Overview)

(v) The factors the users of DiSC Personal Profile System should consider:

There are various factors users would consider. (i) people like to communicate in different methods (ii) Most people possess a chosen style of communication (iii) It is easier to communicate with some people compared to others (iv) There is a system that gives a simple structure for understanding these differences. It is observed that some people appear to have much to say impromptu on nearly any topic, whereas others think before responding. Besides, it is also seen that some people appear to speak from within their heart, mirroring their values, while in case of others they are more reticent and realistic in their communication. (Allen; Brock; Ford, 2002)

(vi) Usefulness of the DiSC Personal Profile System  based on research:

DiSC is used to classify people based on the four quadrant model which consistently described regarding four styles of human behavior which is (i) Dominance (ii) Influence (iii) Steadiness and (iv) Conscientiousness. It is observed that while some people are grouped into one style, others are grouped into two and some are grouped into three. A person’s highest dimension is founded on the personal responses. (DiSC Classic 1.0- Overview)






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