Personality profiling is an employee selection technique that can provide valuable information about a potential employee’s fit. Popular and well-respected tests like DiSC profiling can help you determine which candidates are likely to have strong leadership, organizational or communication skills. When not administered and interpreted correctly, however, these tests can actually steer you away from qualified candidates, or worse, open your company up to legal difficulties.
One might assume, for example, that extroversion is required for leadership, public relations and other communication-heavy positions, but one of the most powerful and successful business leaders in the country—Bill Gates—is a known introvert. This does not dispute the value of personality assessments, but it does underscore the importance of proper interpretation of the results. If you choose to implement one of these programs in your office, look into specialized training for someone in your Human Resource department to avoid turning away strong candidates unnecessarily.
Personality assessments have also come under legal fire. In 2005 a then-popular assessment, the Minnesota Multiphastic Personality Inventory Test, was ruled to violate the Americans with Disabilities Act due to the fact that the test uncovered and identified psychological conditions protected under the Act. The test in question has since been modified to be acceptable under EEOC guidelines, but the importance of avoiding discrimination in pre-employment testing cannot be over-emphasized. Weigh these advantages and disadvantages carefully before deciding to institute personality profiling.