Recently one of my followers sent me link to a personality test that I had never heard of and I believe was launched in 2020. You can read about it and take the test for free at https://principlesyou.com/. The development of the test was funded by Ray Dalio, founder of Bridgewater Associates, and whose net worth is estimated to be US$17 billion. The developers include Dr Adam Grant and Dr Brian Little, whose book Me, Myself, and Us I reviewed in 2015 and I highly recommend.
As free is always an attractive price I took it and make the following observations. It takes some time to do, around 40 minutes. I estimate there are some 300 questions. After about 10 minutes you are offered the option of getting a glimpse of your profile but I soldered on.
The taxonomy of the test may be summarised as follows. There are 17 traits that make up your personality. Different combinations are the basis of 28 Archetypes which are displayed above in what is known as the Archetype Archipelago. The Archetypes are then grouped into 10 categories.
The report you receive when you complete the test is very comprehensive. It begins by matching you to three Archetypes in declining best fit. My three were Commander, Shaper and Strategist. The report then analyses your strength in the 17 components and provides summaries on How You Prefer to Think, How You Engage with Others, and How You Apply Yourself. The report fitted very well with the results I have had from other tests. My first advice to anyone starting the EQ journey is to start with self-assessment and do a scientifically valid personality test. This test would be as good as any.
The next section of the report then covers How you respond in different situations. It covers such issues as interaction with others, leadership style, planning ability, problem solving capability, goal setting, team player, resilience and learning style. Again I had no issue with the report and it would be helpful to anyone working on the second stage of the EQ journey: self-development.
I have just completed my first international webinar The Two Secrets to Corporate Success. I suggested that the second secret is to use people profiling system that is trait based, scientifically valid and practical. There is no question the PrinciplesYou system meets the first two criteria. Practicality is satisfied when the system contains seven components, the limit of short-term memory which is easy-to-use yet provides sufficient granularity. Here the PrinciplesYou system falls down. Even grouping the 28 Archetypes into 10 Categories is insufficient simplification. As a system to help you improve on stages 3 & 4 of the EQ journey: Empathy and Influencing Others, I would consider it far too complex and impractical to use.
This blog was first posted on LinkedIn on 16 May 2021.
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