Assessments Aren’t The Last Word In Predicting Success

If I hear one more corporate trainer or consultant spew Myers Briggs acronyms, I may just explode.

You have heard this in the past. “I am an ENTJ; therefore, I lead people and communicate in the following way…”

Some consultants even earn their living creating profiles of the “ideal leader” for each key marketing, sales, or management position within their client organization.

Is that truly serving their clients’ growth ambitions? I think not.

Just look around you for examples of leaders and celebrities who defied the odds.

MiketysonMike Tyson went from being known as the youngest heavyweight champion in history to a celebrity barbarian. He survived an ear-biting incident, ongoing struggles with women, the death of a 4 year-old daughter, multiple seven-figure lawsuits, two divorces, and imprisonment. He transformed his life through Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous and turned to a more peaceful past time: raising pigeons. If a personality assessment zealot tried to predict his behavior based on his Myers Briggs profile, they would have been wrong.

Here is a contemporary business example. Read Walter Isaacson’s extraordinary biography of Steve Jobs, a man who defied all “ideal leader” profiles. According to Alan Weiss, “you encounter someone who, for a great deal of his life, was erratic, uncaring, often venal, frequently unwashed, and almost always condescending. Yet he forged a seminal organization which retained talent, innovated constantly, generated huge profits, and transformed a great deal of our professional and personal lives.”

Join forces with advisors who are willing to collaborate, not dictate, the ideal solution for your organization.

Much like there is no perfect growth plan or template for B2B companies, there is no single survey or profile that predicts great leaders or future financial success.Weiss suggests that we “challenge the self-anointed gurus who insist leadership is best by consensus, or open book, or survey ratings, or financial focus. The more we try to homogenize and standardize behaviors, the more we suppress those who can shine in their own manner and in their own time.”

Even a boxer from Brooklyn knows that.

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[Image: Flickr user Brian Birzer]

This post originally appeared on FastCompany.com.

copyright 2012, Lisa Nirell. All rights reserved.

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