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Strengths and Personality types

During the past week through a leadership training thingy at work, I did the MBTI personality test for the second time; almost two years after I did it the first time; exact same result.
I also did the StrengthsFinder test. I enjoyed these, which given my MBTI personality type, is hardly surprising. :)

I tend to have mixed feelings about how these are used. I think they're absolutely brilliant tools, but that the results are too often mis-used by people quick to jump to conclusions (:) my personality type to see why this last sentence is funny.)

Both the strengths and the personality type give you your defaults; what you tend to do; what comes naturally to you. The danger is that you (or others) assume that's all you can do, or thats what you always do. Why do I love doing and reflecting on these tests? They tell you, or remind you of, your tendencies and hopefully that's what allows you to adjust.

The facilitator in this section was particularly good, stressing how to interpret, not over-interpret and use the results. The facilitator stressed that with maturity came the ability to shift between all the personality dichotomies, i.e. adapt as needed.

Given that my type stayed consistent, but I was a slight-to-moderate on all off them, hopefully thats a little easier for me. That's the positive spin. The negative is that I'll continue to be a little unpredictable from time to time to keep things interesting.:)

The StrenghtsFinder thing was pretty great too. I was surprised by what my top strengths were, though like all good analysis once I read them they made complete sense.

For me the session did two things
  • Helped me understand things I have a tendency to do, and so hopefully can do better or more easily that others
  • It helped me get to understand why or how I might arrive at some conclusions, which allows me a second look at them, and adjust them if necessary.
My favorite line about INTPs: "They may be seen as unwilling to accept what everyone else regards as truth." :)


Andrew said…
When I was in seventh grade my mom was certified as a teacher and brought this test home and gave it to me. At the time I tested really strongly as an INTJ. A friend and I kept giving the test to lots of people over the years and I made a hobby of guessing people's types. I had you pegged as an INTP from a mile away.
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