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Don’t let bigwig use personality test as an excuse

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

Q. I work closely with the owner of a consulting firm. He’ll only let people ask a question, not explain what’s going on. He says that’s just his personality (he says he’s a “D” and an “I”) and his style is normal for his personality type. It’s driving me crazy. What good is it to have me here if I can’t provide information on the status of projects or situations?

A. You’re discovering what I started seeing when personality profiles proliferated a few decades ago: People with deep flaws can pin their failings on the results of these tests. Then they don’t have to take responsibility for their awful behavior. In the DISC profile, high D (dominance) and I (influence) don’t give that person permission to dictate the rules on how others speak. Since he likes questions, ask him, “Among the dozens of personality profiles out there, how many have you taken?” and “Are you aware these tests aren’t designed to shut down open communication and limit your ability to listen and learn?”

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