Why Not Use a Horoscope?

Assessment tools (Myers Briggs, DISC, etc.) are being touted as useful ways to improve teamwork and productivity.  But they’re really nothing more than a way to label people in ways that aren’t even accurate (since they are self-reported.)  You might as well use a horoscope.  These tools actually provide an excuse not to be honest with each other because it’s easier to label people and put them into categories than to really understand each other.

(If you want genuine personality assessments or selection tools, use a qualified professional and valid, reliable instruments, otherwise you’re on thin ice.  And if you need a referral, let me know.)

The real question is:  What is your objective?

  • If your purpose is to start a conversation, why not use a Drucker essay, a Maureen Dowd column, or a Harvard case study?
  • If you want to identify work styles, why not just discuss who works best in a group work and who prefers solitude?
  • And if you want your people to work better as a team and improve business execution, an approach I often use is to help participants give each other relevant business feedback and actually listen to each other.

The real key is to change behavior, not just insights.