Assessments: Highlights and Implementation
If you have seen the movie “Kung Fu Panda,” you probably remember the powerful and inspiring moment when Po comes to the realization that there is no secret ingredient – it’s just him. He was all but unbeatable after that. Sometimes I also think about the secret sauce Michael Jordan gave his team at halftime in the movie “Space Jam,” so they could come back and defeat the Monstars.
But while we long for secret ingredients, magic sauces and silver bullets, the reality is that our jobs and lives are complex, with ever-changing roles and no exact road maps. Perhaps, in addition to Po’s wisdom, we should heed the words of Stephen R. Covey, who told us in his book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” “If I really want to improve my situation, I can work on the one thing over which I have control – myself.”
And that’s exactly what assessments are for, improving ourselves.
This article and its associated webinar will wrap up our series about assessments, which are extraordinarily useful tools for personal and professional development because they help you understand yourself and others, too. In previous articles, we likened assessments to MRIs because they assist us in seeing what we otherwise can’t and diagnose areas of concern. Specifically, they help us:
- Identify our strengths and weaknesses and become more self-aware.
- See ourselves the way others see us.
- Benchmark against norms and other people, teams and organizations.
- Identify our individual needs and measure the effectiveness of coaching, mentoring and training.
Each assessment that has been discussed in this series provides a final report containing a personalized, action-oriented development plan specifically targeted at you and your success. In the remainder of this article, I’m going to provide a summary of each assessment tool we have discussed and highlight its purpose and benefits. If you’re interested in taking any or all of the assessments, you can learn more at https://assessmyteam.com.
Assessment 1: Learning Styles
Description: An assessment that identifies how you prefer to learn and how you interact with each step of the learning process.
Summary: One person may love to read a book while another might prefer to see the movie. Some people may need to learn in a group setting that offers discussions and debates while others want to study individually. Certain individuals like to take detailed notes, but others may be satisfied with slide images or no notes at all. In addition, people can be visual, auditory or tactile learners, or possess a combination of those learning styles. Also note that every person has different levels of literacy and information retention skills. All of this leads to two major implications: Understanding how you prefer to learn helps you do so to your fullest potential, and you increase your effectiveness as a trainer when you apply different learning styles to training materials.
Assessment 2: DISC
Description: A personality profile that identifies your natural and behavioral styles in dominance, influence, steadiness and conscientiousness.
Summary: Think about how you wish other people were. Often without realizing it, we wish people were perfect and that they were like us. We assume that they are motivated by the same things we are, like to communicate the way we do, work at the same pace and have the same priorities. That simply isn’t the case. People should always be treated equally but never the same. That’s why DISC is such a useful tool – it helps you understand yourself and adapt to others.
Assessment 3: Motivators
Description: An assessment that identifies your motivations in seven dimensions: aesthetic, economic, individualistic, power, altruistic, regulatory and theoretical.
Summary: Greater self-awareness leads to greater success. Self-aware people recognize, among other things, what their motivators are and how those motivators influence their behavior and actions. People who understand their motivators are more likely to pursue the right opportunities for the right reasons and use their motivators to drive behaviors aligned with their desired outcomes, both of which make them more successful.
Assessment 4: Decision Making (Hartman Value Profile)
Description: An assessment that rates a person’s ability to make judgments about the world and one’s self based on personal understanding and how much value the individual places on what is being judged.
Summary: Results from this assessment will assist you in making more effective, informed, balanced and intentional decisions; deciding what you want a situation’s outcomes to be; defining your choices and the potential consequences of each; evaluating which decisions will most likely achieve your outcomes; acting on your decisions; and evaluating and determining if additional decision making is merited.
Assessment 5: Emotional Intelligence
Description: An assessment that ranks a person’s self-recognition and self-management skills as well as their social recognition and social management skills.
Summary: Knowing your levels of emotional intelligence helps you understand the impact of your emotions as well as how to perceive and apply emotions in yourself and others. Emotional intelligence affects – among other things – communication, decision making, leadership, sales, teamwork, productivity, relationships, conflict management and customer service. It allows us to relate better to and interact more effectively with others and apply learning to our jobs and lives. The great news is that emotional intelligence can be learned, practiced and improved.
The premise behind any assessment is simple: to learn more about yourself and use that insight to positively affect your behavior and boost your chances of success. Each assessment has a singular value, and they can be used in combination to provide a more comprehensive understanding of yourself as well as an action plan for skill development.
I want to wrap up this series by inviting you to our complimentary webinar on January 6, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. Eastern. It will cover the contents of this article and challenge you to take some or all of these assessments.
About the Author: David McPeak, CUSP, CET, CHST, CSP, CSSM, is the director of professional development for Utility Business Media’s Incident Prevention Institute (https://ip-institute.com). He has extensive experience and expertise in leadership, human performance, safety and operations. McPeak is passionate about personal and professional development and believes that intrapersonal and interpersonal skills are key to success. He also is an advanced certified practitioner in DISC, emotional intelligence, the Hartman Value Profile, learning styles and motivators.
About Frontline Fundamentals: Frontline Fundamentals topics are derived from the Incident Prevention Institute’s popular Frontline training program (https://frontlineutilityleader.com). Frontline covers critical knowledge, skills and abilities for utility leaders and aligns with the Certified Utility Safety Professional exam blueprint.
Webinar on Assessments Highlights
January 6, 2021, at 3:30 p.m. Eastern
Visit https://frontlineutilityleader.com for more information.