According to CPP, the exclusive publisher of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment tool, the MBTI is not recommended for use in recruitment and selection. However, it has helped many people gain insights about themselves and how they interact with others, so it can be a great tool for team and leadership development or conflict and stress management.
Management researchers, William Gardner and Mark Martinko, write in a comprehensive review: “Few consistent relationships between type and managerial effectiveness have been found. The MBTI is not a useful predictor of job performance… the MBTI measures preferences, not ability. The use of the MBTI as a predictor of job or career success is expressly discouraged in the MBTI Manual.”
A Fortune Magazine 2013 article, Have we all been duped by the Myers-Briggs Test, says: “The interesting and somewhat alarming fact about the MBTI is that, despite its popularity, it has been subject to sustained criticism by professional psychologists for over three decades. One problem is that it displays what statisticians call low ‘test-retest reliability’. So if you retake the test after only a five-week gap, there’s around a 50% chance that you will fall into a different personality category compared to the first time you took the test.”
Annie Murphy Paul also discredits the use of the MBTI in her book, The Cult of Personality Testing. She writes: “The sixteen distinctive types described by the Myers-Briggs have no scientific basis whatsoever.”
The question is what kind of assessment is actually recommended to support your hiring decisions?
Contemporary personality psychologists believe that there are five basic dimensions of personality, often referred to as the Big 5 personality traits. The five are identified by the theory as extraversion, agreeableness, openness, conscientiousness and neuroticism. Any psychometric or personality assessment must be based on a Big 5 platform to add predictive value to your selection process.
Here are three excellent Big 5 based psychometric assessments:
- The company: AAI Assessment (AAI); the product: Work Behavior Inventory (WBI)
- The company: Hogan Assessments; the product: Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI)
- The company: Saville & Holdsworth (SHL); the product: Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ)
In Grant Thornton, we have worked with AAI Assessment for ten years and have found the WBI the most accurate way of checking personality, leadership style, leave of achievement orientation, initiative and emotional stability; plus other 30 traits. They are all important indicators of future work behavior. Read more.
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