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Psychometric Instruments or simply Self-Assessment ToolsT

By Dr. Sunita Rai

There are many of them out there. You may have encountered some of them as part of training, coaching or self-awareness exercises or workshops. Many more are available on Internet. Most of them have a cost associated with them and comes in the form of a ques-tionnaire either online or manually with paper and pencil. After you respond to the ‘survey’, you will receive a report describing and labeling some of your behaviors, characters, strengths or personality type. It is best you go over your report in the presence of a skilled assessor or coach. Reading it by yourself, has limited value as what matters is the conversations.

Let me give you a perspective about these reports. In general, these instruments are de-signed, developed, thoroughly tested and certified for validity and reliability by the scientific community. One of the questions you must ask before you accept the instrument is about its reliability, validity and acceptance. The coach/administrator is the next most important aspect. Your report is not a prescription to a problem. It is not a way to box you in or label you. It is also not like the medical report that accurately furnishes the pulse rate, blood pressure etc. Most of these reports have no right or wrong, neither good nor bad. The administrator should be able to guide you to the right mindset before you attempt the survey. It is also important that she engages you in a conversation while walking you through the report in non-judging way, as if we are looking at a map and validating every step.

Each instrument has a specific area of focus, an angle to look at human behaviors and its own terminology. You will find value in exploring a few instruments and figuring out patterns in your behavior. It allows you to complete the puzzle in your and others behaviors, thus raising self awareness, and others awareness leading to better management and coping strategies especially applicable in challenging situations, collaborative environments, career/life planning, leadership and interpersonal relationships.

Please remember, no instrument will accurately describe you, as you are uniquely different from others. But they help you uncover your less explored strengths, thus elevating the possibility of you becoming the best, you could possibly be!

We wish you an enlightening journey through the mystery of self and others!


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