Self- inventories – MBTI® – Myers-Briggs Personality Indicator
To become an effective team member requires skills that we can learn or already have, including technical skills, interpersonal skills, and a basic understanding of personalities and behaviour.
We can often act more appropriately if we understand ourselves and our behaviours as well as learn to appreciate the basic personalities and behaviours of others. Such knowledge helps us to use and respond to individual differences among team members constructively. A number of self-inventory or personality tests are available.
Most common in organizational settings is the MBTI® or the Myer-Briggs Type Indicator.
The MBTI® has been employed as a tool for many years by a variety of users in small business and large corporations; service industries and manufacturing concerns; consulting and training services; government at all levels; established firms and new ventures by entrepreneurs; and educational and health care institutions.
In general, the MBTI® functions as a tool that helps people in organizations to:
- understand themselves and their behaviour
- appreciate others so as to make constructive use of individual differences
- see that approaching problems in different ways can be healthy and productive for an organization.
Specifically, organizations use MBTI® for:
- communicating more effectively with supervisors, peers, and employees
- solving organizational or personal problems
- making the most of the organization’s human resources
- assisting in career choice and professional development
- improving team work
- understanding and adapting to differences in management style
- understanding contributions to the organization
- conflict resolution
The MBTI® was developed by an American mother and daughter team, Katharine Briggs and Isabel Myers. They based the Indicator on the work of C. G. Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist who had studied people’s behaviours for many years. It is one of the 250 personality profiling tools recognised by the
The MBTI® provides a useful measure of personality by looking at eight personality preferences that all people use at different times. These eight preferences are organized into four bi-polar scales. When you take the Indicator, the four preferences that you identify as most like you (one from each scale) are combined into what is called a “type.”
In order for you to make the most of your results, it is important to understand that the MBTI®:
- describes rather than prescribes; it feeds back to you in organised form the preferences you indicated when answering the questions
- describes preferences, not skills or abilities
- says that all preferences are equally important
- is well documented and researched with hundreds of scientific studies conducted over a forty-year period
- has a user’s organization devoted to its continued search and development
Because the results on the MBTI® are subject to a variety of influences, they need to be individually verified. Each individual needs to determine the type which best describes him- or herself. This may or may not be the same type as reported on the MBTI®.
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