Published On: Mon, Jul 21st, 2014

Psychometric Testing – Testing for Talent?


The psychometric testing business seems to lean more heavily to exciting new products than those that are well established. This is partly because some people have done the same test half a dozen times on various training programmes and are bored with it, and the easiest thing to do is repackage some old ideas!

Even though there are hundreds of personality tests on the market, they are all measuring much the same thing? about half a dozen personality traits and a similar number of abilities. It is a bit like colours: there may be only three primary colours and seven in the rainbow, but go to your local B&Q and you have a hundred shades of what used to be called “off white”.

So you take an old idea and repackage it. For example there used to be something called charm, it is now “emotional intelligence” Similarly people used to be cool, now they are “resilient”

Talent management is a new fashion, there is money to be made if you can find a way of measuring this elusive quality. “Learning Agility” What is that you may ask? “A persons ability and willingness to learn from experience to improve future performance” Wow! This can be broken down into another four areas, People Agility, Results Agility, Mental Agility and Change Agility. There is a great deal of definition to be attributed to these areas. If I wrote it, you would be falling asleep!!

Is there good reason to be testing these areas? A recent academic journal gave consultants the opportunity (myself included) to evaluate the Agility concept, to which the results were “Not much is new” “Still searching for clarity” The overall verdict was are new products too good to be true? Probably was the outcome. Testing is advantageous, but it will always be a “People thing” For more call Bill Pratt on 01454 418855