Which Personality Test is Right for your Creative Team?

99u.adobe.com 99u.adobe.com3 years ago in #Business Love445

Who doesn’t love a personality test? There’s a reason why online quizzes like “Which Succession Character Are You?” make the rounds on Slack, and why—despite being described by researchers as an “act of irresponsible armchair philosophy”—Myers-Briggs remains so popular. It’s easy to understand the allure of such tests. If you can relate to a type, you can better explain why you feel and act the way that you do. And if you understand the traits of your friends, co-workers, and loved ones, then all their little ticks that drive you mad no longer feel so frustrating. They’re an “INTP” type, after all.While there are countless professional personality tests to choose from, sifting through all the information about them online can be overwhelming. It’s difficult to work out not only which tests are scientifically valid, but also what they can offer groups of creatives. The makeup of a team of designers, art directors, and project managers will likely be very different to that of a tax department, so a personality test will offer a creative team different insights than it would a financial one. That’s why we’ve asked a group of professionals to help us demystify five popular personality tests, with a focus on how they might benefit the creative workplace.There are many reasons to try the following tests, and also many reasons to take their results with a grain of salt. “Personality tests can be useful in terms of team building because they’re actually really fun to do together,” says Alisa Cohn, an executive coach who has worked with teams at Etsy and The New York Times, “but you shouldn’t be spending your whole life doing them.”According to Arthur B. Markman, Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin, a good test can “provide information that helps groups work together more effectively.” But there’s a danger in overinterpreting results: “We have to recognize that even with the best personality tests, those results are only going to predict about 20% of the difference in behavior that you see between people, and that’s in the best condition.” With an understanding that personality tests aren’t going to solve all of your creative or collaborative problems, it’s time to find out: Which personality test is right for your team?***1. Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Let’s begin with the classic. In a nutshell, the MBTI attempts to summarize how an individual approaches the world. Personality types are indicated through their assignment to four polarized characteristics: people are either extroverted or introverted, sensing or intuitive, thinking or feeling, judging or perceiving. So if you’re introverted, sensing, feeling, and perceiving, then you’re an ISFP type.The MBTI was originally developed to help match newly working women with suitable jobs during the Second World War, so now it’s quite antiquated from a scientific point of view. “It doesn’t predict anything, so it’s just a bad test,” summarizes Markman. “People are multifaceted,” adds Cohn, “so just because you’re a natural P style, doesn’t mean you can’t run an effective meeting or meet deadlines.” Ultimately, the test’s binary opposites make it limiting: It doesn’t paint a nuanced picture of a person.On the other hand, the MBTI’s broad strokes can help bring people together—as long as the results are taken lightly. “I recently had a group of creatives who bonded over their shared NFP style,” says Cohn. “There were a couple in the group who didn’t have the same style, and wouldn’t you know, those were the folks that were causing a lot of conflict on the team. The resulting back-and-forth gave them all a language to joke about the issues and pull together.” 2. The…

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