Personality Tests May Offer Clues About Team Member Fit But The Analysis Should Not Stop There

Wednesday, January 23, 2013 08:54
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Personality Tests May Offer Clues About Team Member Fit But The Analysis Should Not Stop There

Tags: Advisor businesses | productivity | teams

How your team functions internally and how its members leverage off of each other’s abilities are critical elements in success.
 
But the impetus behind using the tests may be faulty. Here’s why.

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Many teams use personality tests to offer clues about how to best utilize team member talents.
 
Myers-Briggs, DISC, and Kolbe are three that still offer beneficial insights into how well potential team members might fit.
 
The reasons cited for using the tests make two assumptions. One, that teams must be harmonious for them to be successful and two, that harmony is created by constructing a team with complementary personality styles.
 
If these two assumptions were true, all leaders would have to do is assemble the right personality mix, sit back, and watch the money roll in.
 
This is the assessment of a coach to financial advisors and wholesalers. Conflict among team members usually arises from feelings of unfair treatment. When the rewards of success are not evenly or appropriately distributed, resentment builds into anger and conflict is the result.
 
His point is that conflict indicates something is structurally wrong with the team.
 
But conflict is not always a bad thing. The structurally wrong conclusion is likely to be an incomplete assessment.
 
Personality tests can be good tools but that's usually where the assessment ends.
 
Continual agreement with little or no challenge to the way things are done can lead to lethargy and cause a business to decline.
 
Some disharmony can be good, especially if it’s an effort to refresh the team’s approach to new client demographics or to illuminate a legitimate fault in the client service or advisory process.
 
Egos can get in the way of keeping a team at the forefront of industry trends and, therefore, stymie the team’s progress. This will cause a direct hit to the team’s bottom line.
 
So if your team is currently dysfunctional, it may be a positive sign that major growth is about to occur, if and only if you will let it. Determining how to manage this dysfunction productively is where you may need help.

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