Assessment tools are a valid and trustworthy source of feedback for clients regarding their communication style, behaviours, preferences, skills, etc. They are invaluable in helping clients with their personal and professional growth and development.
In several individual or team coaching approaches, one or more of the following tools may be recommended.
Myers-Brigg Type Indicator® (MBTI®)
This tool is one of the most commonly used in organizations worldwide. It describes our preferences in relation to four areas of our personality. These four dimensions consist of two functions, judging and perceiving, and two attitudes, the source of energy (introversion vs. extraversion) and how we perceive our external environment. This tool allows for a better understanding of our interactions and focuses on the importance of understanding and appreciating our differences. We can thus become aware of our unique talents and our vulnerabilities.
Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation-Behaviour (FIRO-B)
This tool measures an individual’s fundamental needs with regard to their relationships with others. It focuses on wanted and expressed needs related to inclusion, control and openness. It reveals the impact our interpersonal needs have on our behaviour with others and our degree of compatibility with them. This information helps to identify new strategies for maximizing the impact we want to have on others.
Personal Coaching Styles Inventory® (PCSI®)
This tool, which was developed by coaches for coaches, allows for a better common understanding of communication. By analyzing the four styles and taking into consideration that there are variations of them in each of us, you learn ways to interact with others, coach, advise and give them feedback.
Strength Deployment Inventory® (SDI®)
Based on the theory of relationship awareness, this tool identifies the motivations that influence our behaviour in two particular contexts: when things are going well and when we face opposition. It helps to better understand our style and strengths and to clarify the various strategies we adopt when dealing with opposition, stress or conflict. This tool is particularly effective with teams, helping members to understand and make better use of each person’s strengths and to prevent and resolve conflicts.
360° feedback tools
This type of instrument is used for collecting feedback on an individual’s management and leadership skills and behaviours from multiple sources: from peers, direct reports, clients, the immediate supervisor, and themselves. The goal of the process is to help managers obtain a realistic picture of their strengths and development opportunities, to identify what she or he wants to improve upon or develop in order to advance his or her career, and to create a development plan to achieve these objectives.
We sometimes use an interview process in which we can target a few skills or take a global look at the leadership skills in order to establish a complete picture. We also have at our disposal the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) suite of 360° feedback tools, the Korn Ferry Voices tool, and the Cultural Transformation Tools (CTT) Leadership Values Assessment.