Perfect Personality Profiles

Perfect Personality Profiles by Helen Baron Read Free Book Online

Book: Perfect Personality Profiles by Helen Baron Read Free Book Online
Authors: Helen Baron
phases, when the results of trials are reviewed to check whether the results meet the appropriate psychometric benchmarks. If necessary, the questionnaire is revised in the light of the results and retrialled. There are rarely fewer than two revisions, and often many more. In addition to this basic process of questionnaire development, research is performed to understand in more detail how well the questionnaire works and how to use it most effectively.
    The result of this is that well-developed questionnaires encapsulate a great deal of knowledge and expertise in personality assessment and make this accessible to a much less expert user. They are sophisticated tools that enable a relatively unskilled person to assess personality effectively and accurately. While questionnaires are sophisticated tools, most questionnaires are essentially straightforward. They provide job candidates, or others completing them, with a way of describing their personality that is simple and easy to understand. The detailed development work is to create an instrument that is clear and unambiguous.
    The last stage of development is the creation of a comparison group to use in interpreting the questionnaire results. Most questionnaires are interpreted by comparing an individual’s results with that of a large relevant population, such as working adults or managers and professionals. Rather than looking at people’s absolute score on a scale, their relative position is considered. This helps to put the score in context and enables more accurate differentiations between different scores on a scale. A typical scale score will be assigned to between 5 and 10 score categories or bands for the purpose of interpretation.
    The information that questionnaires provide is typically straightforward. The purpose is to elicit from the people completing the questionnaire the knowledge they already have about their personality. However, the questionnaire helps to structure the knowledge and provide a metric, or a scale, in which to understand it. If you know yourself well, the results of the questionnaire will probably tell you what you already know. What it will do is put this information into a structure that may allow you to make better use of it. It will also help another person to understand you. Questionnaires used in staff selection will restrict themselves to appropriate aspects of personality. You will not be revealing information about yourself that a normal person would not be happy to reveal in other job selection contexts such as an interview or application form.
    Advantages of the questionnaire approach
    All psychometric tests and questionnaires have a number of attributes that make them effective measures of people’s qualities. They are standardized tasks to which people can respond on the basis of their own skills, abilities and characteristics. Each person receives the same questions or tasks and is given exactly the same instructions. All responses are scored in the same way to provide the personality profile or type. This standardization allows us to infer that the differences in the way that different people respond are due to differences between them rather than the task itself or particular circumstances. This is not true of much other information collected during the selection process, when the interviewer might phrase questions differently for different candidates, or the ‘chemistry’ between the interviewer and the interviewee will differ, which can affect the way questions are asked and how the candidate responds.
    Questionnaires are developed by experts who understand what it is they are trying to measure and how to measure it. They structure information about personality so that it is easier to understand. Rather than a series of stories or disconnected facts, personality questionnaires provide structured information within a profile that can be meaningfully interpreted.
    Questionnaires also provide objective information about the

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