Competition LO18016

Rol Fessenden (
Thu, 7 May 1998 13:35:04 -0400

Replying to LO17995 --

Ed, you ask,

> Re the dimensions
>That is very interesting. In assessing where people are on each scale,
>are you also encouraging them to move in one direction or the other, in
>other words, to improve in each area? I would think that it provides
>both a comprehensive and quite complex understanding of the individual.
>Can this also be applied to teams?

We do several things. First through a psychological test (360 degree
version, I think is the proper terminology) we collect data once every
several years. It is all the personal property of the individual, and he
or she may share it or not, as he chooses. Then we spend several days
showing people how the various dimensions interact with each other. That
way, they can see the impact of the interactions, and they can reflect on
how it affects their performance and behavior.

We also have separate information on career goals, and we show them the
"ideal" characteristics of successful people on that track. This
information is international in scope, but mostly US and European. It is
collected by 360 degree psychological questionnaires of people who have
been identified as successful. The database (last I knew) was quite
large, so it is pretty useable. We also point out that there are
successful people who are not on the ideal set of characteristics, but
they are just rarer.

If the individual is smart, she will share the information with her
supervisor, and they will jointly create a developmental plan to help move
some of the dimensions. Some movement will happen inevitably through
experience, but it can be accelerated if a person is motivated.

Ultimately, the choice of how to use the information is up to the
individual. Most people find it very useful.

We are developing separate instruments for teams. They are still in what
I would call a very early beta stage. They are more akin to the Feedback
For Improvement instruments I have describe previously. And they revolve
around different metrics, such as performance, collaboration, meeting team
members' key requirements, and so forth. Team members fill it out
themselves about their team. The results are easily skewed by new
members, and by external factors, so these instruments need to be used
with great care. They are not the property of the team, but of the
company, and we use them to set performance goals that will overcome
identified weaknesses.

Sorry to carry on so much.


Rol Fessenden

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