I’m a sucker for personality assessments. I love working through the tests, reflecting on my own tendencies, nudging myself towards self-honesty even when it’s uncomfortable. I love reading through the results and considering the ways they show up in my life. And I love talking with colleagues about their results, having those aha! moments about how we work individually and together.
I also think most assessments are complete junk science rooted in inherently fallible methods. (With a minor exception for the Big Five, but I’ve never seen those come up in workplace seminars.)
So why bother with assessments? The truth is, there’s tremendous value in doing that self-reflection and having those conversations with others. Finding the pieces that resonate and digging in with those. Reviewing the pieces that don’t resonate and considering if there’s any truth to them.
Having a novel framework to play with is hugely useful for doing that work. It forces you to consider and reconsider what you know about yourself. You shine a light into the unexamined corners of how you relate to others, how you prefer to structure (or not!) your work, how you engage with ideas, and so much more – in short, how you exist in the world.
It’s all too easy to go on autopilot and forget that your perceptions of the world are unique to you. Anything that jolts us out of autopilot mode is helpful for understanding the particulars of our own perception. And that in turn is key to being able to understand how others exist in the world.
Once you have a framework and shared language around it, you can begin having conversations about why you click so well with one person but have friction with another. It helps explain why you drag your heels on one thing but are ready to leap out of bed for another. And building greater context around how others perceive the world makes it easier to have empathy for them.
Of course, all of this can also be said for astrology. It offers a framework and language for our tendencies and preferences. It doesn’t tell us any divine truths, but creates space for us to identify what we, ourselves hold true. And so just like personality assessments, they’re only as valuable as the reflection and conversation they inspire.
I’m an ISFJ, Leo, Peacekeeper, Kolbe 8634 with strengths in Strategic Thinking and Executing. And that won’t tell you a thing about me unless we have a conversation about it. But if we do? You’ll start getting to know me pretty well.