If you're a coach or people practitioner who is looking for fresh ways to develop your teams and leaders, you might have thought about ways you can use profiling tools to enhance your practice. There are lots of personalty and behavioural assessment tools out there. How on earth do you select the best one?

I've got a Master's in Research Methods and Psychological Assessment, spent 20 years working with psychological assessments in clinical research AND work as a Research and Coaching Psychologist. So I MUST know the answer to this, right? Right?

Profiling tools

Well... I'm afraid as with most things psychology and human behaviour, the answer is not that clear cut. Indeed it's not clear cut at all.

In fact I would go so far as to say that in a vast majority of situations the tool itself is simply not the most important thing!

The most important thing to focus on is the quality of the conversation that comes next.

What do I mean by that? Well if we focus too much on the 'magic' of the tool itelf and which one is best, we quickly get into labelling and pigeon-holing. For example, if I was to tell you that DISC was THE best way of profiling behavioural preferences, I'm setting up an expectation that whatever is reflected back in someone's profile is going to be a pretty accurate representation of who they are. This is really limiting - if we get too fused with that particular story about ourselves and our behaviours, we can stay well and truely in comfort zone and close off opportunities to change.

Conversely, if we have an expanisve conversation about someone's profile, and explore some of the things it doesn't say about our uniqueness, strengths and challenges we can use the tool as a framework, or scaffolding for a really curious conversation.

What would such a conversation look like? Here's a few ideas for you.

- What emotions came up for them when they read their profile? Where might those emotions come from?

- When have they behaved in a way that would be 'out of character' to the framing of their profile? What can they learn about themselves from that situation?

- What beliefs or values underpin the behaviours that resonate with them most on their profile?

We explore expansive conversations, langague to steer clear of, behaviours as story and much more in my DISC workshop for coaches and people practioners. And if your team could benefit from more expansive conversations, get in touch to discuss how I can help!

Isabelle Fielding_Logo Mark

"I partner with you to move your teams from good to great"

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