Webinar presenter Chris Jones answered a number of your questions after his presentation, More Effective Personality Conflict Management by Using the Myers Briggs Dichotomies. Here are just a few of their responses.
Audience Question: Is the Myers-Briggs type indicator an IQ test? Is it a test of emotional intelligence? Can you help explain the difference between these different types of assessments and explain more what that means?
Chris Jones: No it is definitely not an IQ test. It has nothing to do with anyone’s level of intelligence. It is a test to make the taker more self-aware of their innate or pre-born dispositions and preferences that they have based on the dichotomies that we have. It is a good way for people to realize in certain environments specifically with where do I get my energy? How do I take in information and make decisions off of that information and how do I deal with the world in general? Those are my preferences. When no one is around, when my wife isn’t around, when my kids aren’t around, when I’m not at work, these are how I prefer to do things. All they are, all the tests at least is to make someone more self-aware of their innate dispositions, their preferences as they relate to the test. There are a lot of very similar ones out there. There’s the Fero(?) test, there’s the DISC, there’s the Gallagher (?) test. There are a lot of different ones that you can take. However, Myers-Briggs is still at the top of the one that is most widely used in the world.
Audience Question: You talked about taking the Myers-Briggs. How do we have access to the Myers-Briggs type indicator test if we’ve never taken the test? So how do I find this?
Chris Jones: The best way is to reach out to a really awesome instructor named myself, Chris Jones. No, I’m kidding. There are a number of certified different ways. A certified practitioner has to administer the test to you. Basically, that will consist of them kind of telling what the test is all about to put you in the right mindset for taking the test, they’ll give you the test, they’ll talk a little bit about how the test was formed with the young Briggs and Myers. Then they will let you do a self-assessment very similar to what you all did earlier with picking out your preferences. Once you picked out your preferences, you’ll score the test, once the test is scored, you’ll compare those to the preferences that you picked out. The end result of this test, at least the self-fillable one, the one that you would take with the pen or pencil is basically you pick your preference or the one that you prefer the most so that people can know how you prefer to operate. This works really good in a work environment where everyone takes the test and then everyone conveys which dichotomy they are. For instance, mine is INTP. I’m an introvert, I prefer intuition, thinking and perceiving. My wife is an ESFJ, basically the exact opposite of me. It’s good that I know how she prefers to do those four things and those four categories that we talk to because I can approach her differently when she’s feeling down and depressed and just kind of in a dull mood, I know that based on her personality preference of extroversion, I need to get her out, get her up, get her out. Let’s go do something. We may not have to go out and buy anything but let’s just get her around and let her people watch, walk through the stores, go to a ball game, something. She thrives in that environment. The opposite is true of me. When I am up and about, and she is taking me to a concert or a ball game and I’m just physically exhausted, she may take the little ones upstairs and watch them kid movies and just kind of give me some time to reflect and recharge being an introvert. I hope that answers some of the questions there.
Audience Question: I know that there is a sense of question for how neat people fall into these 16 categories. I’ve seen statistics where it will say certain percentages of people will typically fall into these different categories. Do you know if there is any research done that mass-fact these 16 personalities that they gravitate towards specific types of careers?
Chris Jones: There are. There is research and I believe that there are links that you can go to. You could probably Google it and it will tell you what type is the best fitting for what career. I caution people to do that because more often than not, that’s just not the case. We talked about MBTI being the nature versus nurture and talk about how we prefer things innately but those things can be shaped by the environment or a need for instance if I told you that I am predominantly an introvert, right? Most people would put an introvert for an instructor for LE and not certainly an instructor in front of a thousand and so people or in front of anyone talking to anyone. Just because certain types may be fitting and certain job categories or specific jobs, I don’t think there is a whole lot of research that says everybody in this job is this dichotomy or everybody in this field is this dichotomy but there are some research and some good graphs out there that will show you kind of where each one fits or would best fit according to that particular research.
Audience Question: In conflict what would you do if as an introvert you are willing to be understanding and be flexible, but you have a conflict with somebody who is a different personality trait and completely unwilling to be flexible and understanding of the differences? How do you navigate that situation?
Chris Jones: Well, the thing to remember about that is the way they prefer to have conversations in the way that they prefer to communicate. Because you are an introvert doesn’t necessarily mean that you are more compassionate than an extrovert. You lean more towards that aspect compared to an extrovert. If I am an introvert and I am speaking with an extrovert. Speaking with those two personality traits specifically, I am going to be more likely to be more engaged in a conversation to seek a resolution as opposed to sending emails saying you didn’t do this, I don’t know why you did that. If you give an extrovert a time to reflect, you are not going to get as good a result that you would if you approach them and communicated with them in talking or over the phone. If I’ve got an angry extrovert and I’m an introvert. I’m going to get out of my shell a little bit and have a conversation so I can put this extrovert at ease and I can resolve the conflict better.
Christina (host): Great tip here from Ashley and Ashley said that there is a free version of something similar. It is called 16personalities.com. I’ve taken that as well and I’ve found it useful Ashley so great recommendation.
Audience Question: Chris have you seen people’s answers change overtime over life experiences and I am — this up because you and I just had this convo right before we started this webinar. You go ahead and share.
Chris Jones: They most certainly will change and for a number of reasons but a few specifically are the ones that you see the most. While I was talking to Chris earlier about when I take the test, predominantly I am in a very clear introvert, intuition, and thinking. However, the four times that I have taken it, I’ve been kind of middle of the road judging and perceiving. It tends to change every time I’ve taken it or it gets more toward the middle toward judging and perceiving. The biggest thing with taking the test is getting directions on how to take the test before you take it. Most of our thought processes are shaped by whatever environment we are in. If I am taking this test with my colleagues, I’m going to think like my colleagues or supervisors want me to think, right? If I am at home or I am on an island with Wilson the volleyball. I am going to think about how I want to, right? A lot of that are going to go into mindset. Some people may not have been in the correct mindset the first time they took it and got very different results. We are definitely shaped by our environment and our experiences over time and that will certainly play a lot into that. I believe the accuracy rate for this test though is upwards of 90%, somewhere around in there.
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