Re-Thinking Personality and the Way it is Measured
Thursday, 16th May 2019
Most personality assessment in an organisational setting involves the use of self-report questionnaires, which assume an underlying stable and enduring personality that can be accurately measured by individuals answering questions about themselves. One of the main criticisms levelled at self-report questionnaires is that they are particularly susceptible to faking and social desirability, especially in high stakes situations such as recruitment. Whilst one of our sessions addressed this criticism by sharing their work on creating a task-based method for assessing The Big Five personality constructs, our other session argued that personality changes over time, with work being a significant factor in shaping that adaptive change.
Alan Howard, Director, MOSAIC Tasks
TK Wu – Business Psychologist, MOSAIC Tasks
Alan and TK presented an alternative to personality questionnaires following their papers at the most recent ABP and BPS DOP conferences. Utilising recent advances in technology, personality assessment can be revolutionised so that one no longer needs to rely solely on questionnaires, which routinely suffer from distortion such as social desirability responding (Birkeland et al 2006). The alternative approach – Objective Personality Tasks or OPTs – builds on the research of Cattell (e.g. Cattell and Warburton 1967). OPTs rely on measuring task performance – but it is the way people complete each task, rather than how well they do on it, that reveals their personality traits. Participants are unaware of which aspects of their personality are being assessed. The tasks are typically short e.g. 5-12 minutes, completed online and resemble puzzles or challenges that are applicable to all ages and levels of seniority. Alan and TK presented the results of MOSAIC’s ongoing research into the validation of multiple OPTs in a sample of 200 participants using self-report ratings of personality and biodata.
Winnie Frimpong & Sasha Arabadji
Consultant Work Psychologists, Aston Business Assessments (ABA)
Winne and Sasha focused on the ABA People Development Dynamics (PDD) model. This model outlines how development happens through the interactions people have with their work environment and is the foundation for how ABA approach people development at work. They also covered how the use of assessment can help facilitate the development process and how the PDD model shapes ABA’s approach to the design and use of their assessment tools and reports. Sasha and Winnie are both consultant work psychologists working for Aston Business Assessments headed by Prof. Steve Woods. They joined ABA soon after completing their MSc in Occupational Psychology at Surrey Business School and have been working to develop and grow ABA across a variety of activities including, but not limited to: ABA client services, new product development, designing and delivering training programmes and managing the ABA Trait Online assessment platforms.