Emily Marsh

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Personality profiling and the employee life cycle

May 16, 2018

Personality profiling tools have been available for decades. But for many years their use was confined to the recruitment process.

Recently, however, organisations are integrating personality profiling into the entire talent management lifecycle, from recruitment through to team working, leadership development and final exit.

Personality profiling provides a model and a language to explain how people differ in their behaviour, motivations and attitudes. These personality insights can be used to help predict and shape behaviour, enhance team working, support personal development, foster leadership skills, and to successfully affect change.

In this blog post, we offer a deep dive into how personality profiling can be leveraged at each stage of the employee lifecycle.

Selection

An individual’s attitudes, characteristics and patterns of behaviours are some of the key ingredients that determine how well they will perform. For this reason, organisations have long been integrating personality profiling at the recruitment stage.

Personality profiling for recruitment often gets a bad rap. It can be deemed unethical or invasive. But it all comes down to how the organisation uses it. It doesn’t have to be a ruthless approach - eliminating candidates who don’t tick all the right boxes. More often than not, it serves as a basis for getting to know a candidate. And it helps guide discussions at the interview stage, allowing you to dig deeper into a candidate’s strengths, preferences and character.

Integration

Understanding how a new employee prefers to learn, work and interact gives you a steer on how best to integrate them into the business so that they can flourish. It helps you answer questions like, ‘What team would they be most likely to excel in?’, ‘What kind of management style will they respond best to?’, What is the best way to give them feedback? This helps ensure employees are fully engaged and productive from the outset.

Teamwork

Personality profiling helps raise employee self-awareness of why they approach their work in the way they do, as well as why others may differ, and what this means for the overall team performance. This helps pave the way for stronger working relationships and less conflict. For instance, if someone appears overly controlling, colleagues will understand this is their personality playing out and that they aren’t being difficult or unreasonable.

Ultimately, self-aware teams are more engaged, more productive and better able to perform as a cohesive unit. And this can only be a good thing for your business.

Development

Personality profiling can be valuable when it comes to an employee's personal and professional development, as it raises their self-awareness. If they know what their natural strengths are, they can apply them in the right situations. If they are aware of their weaknesses and recognise their emotions, they can acknowledge these and manage how they react in certain scenarios.

Having a model for employees to better understand themselves also offers them a language to communicate their preferences, which can be helpful in the context of coaching, target and goal setting, and appraisals. And from the manager’s point of view, it means they can adapt their communication style when delivering feedback or conducting appraisals to get the most out of employees.

Leadership

All successful organisations need great leaders. And great leaders can be found at all levels of your organisation.

Personality profiling helps an organisation identify high-potential individuals who could be the future leaders of the company. And it helps managers devise appropriate coaching and leadership development programmes that enable them to be the best they can be. At an individual level, it provides an opportunity for leaders to explore their core personalities, preferences and strengths. So they know their strengths, and when they need to adapt their style to achieve the business goal.

Talent

Personality insights enable organisations to identify and segment talent so they can match employees to roles they are likely to enjoy and thrive in, based on their behavioural preferences. Research consistently shows that employees who enjoy the kinds of tasks they need to perform at work are more satisfied and engaged. And high employee engagement means greater productivity, improved staff retention rates, and as a consequence - more satisfied customers.

Culture

Organisational culture is a system of beliefs and values shared by everyone in a company. It shapes employee behaviour and attitudes. And it’s becoming more and more crucial to business success - it may be the only thing that distinguishes your company from competitors. Using personality profiling throughout the entire organisation enables companies to define and describe their culture using a common language.

Change

Change is a constant in today’s business environment. And people are the ones that make it happen. So when driving change, it’s essential you ensure the needs of the workforce are respected.

But people react to change in different ways. Some are excited by it; others find it daunting. Personality insights help organisations identify who will lead change, who might see the problems and who may need support. Using these insights to predict and manage these responses will help you successfully affect change.

Exit

When an employee leaves your company, you want them to go away with a positive perception of your company. You don’t want to cut ties completely, as perhaps they’ll come back to you at some point in the future. And you want them to talk about your company in a positive light to others to attract other talent, right? The best way to ensure this is to engage them with the right behavioural information they can take with them on the next step in their career path. Personality profiling provides a platform for this.

Personality profiling helps organisations to harness the greatest potential from their employees throughout their entire journey with the business. It’s not just about getting the right person through the door. It’s a long-term approach to get the most out of your employees from the moment they arrive in your organisation, right through to when they leave.

Beyond the Personality Test

Topics: personality profiling talent management Featured

   

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