A vast amount of Wall Street Venture Capital dollars have funded many clubby Ivy League start-ups that pronounced Gamification as the new multi-purpose assessment instruments whose insightful gifts make a vast array of yet to be scientifically proven results. I have spent the last two months flushing this out and trying not to be some stuffy old man but following my molecular scientist daughter’s words to be open minded and embracing of New Concepts that come into my life.
Hard as I tried, Gamification failed again and again against the Psychometric Standards of Reliability, Validity, Veracity to provide a Diagnostic Modality that is predicative of human behavior. It is this Collective Predictability that provides any assessment instrument with its value and significance.
I found myself revisiting my doctoral education and looking at the History of Psychometrics. It should come as no surprise to anyone that it was the Chinese that first used various assessment instruments for their world renown civil service system. For centuries, they perfected this craft and even less surprising the ever resourceful British in the form of the East India Company started copying the Chinese System to select their employees that they posted around the globe.
So successful was their system, that the British government followed suite which then was copied by Germany and France and much later in the United States by the American Civil Service Commission.
Yet the modern roots of the Psychometric test we have all grown up with finds its start with Charles Darwin’s cousin Sir Francis Galton who was fascinated by individual differences; which we now have come to call Typologies. The further advancement in this came from James Catteil who first used the term Mental Test in 1890. By the early twentieth century with the scientific work of the Behaviorists we find Alfred Binet introducing the first modern intelligence test.
His Stanford Binet Standard Assessment, we are took as children in the Public Schools across the nation which categorized Cognitive, Sensory, Perceptual and Motor functions. With the abundance of data over such an extended period of time these instruments created a benchmark of predictive character that this newly minted Gamification has not even reached the first rung of the ladder.
In the world of industry, the Meyers Briggs Assessment developed in the 1940’s developed on Dr. Carl Jung’s work on Individuation and Typology became the Gold Standard of Personality Assessment.
For almost eighty years this test has reign supreme and while it has proved its value, it inability to modify its testing protocol and assessment summary makes it less and less useful to the changing world in which we live. It is not a matter that it is not a valid instrument but its complexity and length of testing and summary results make its rapid congruency difficult to apply within our times.
In many ways, it exists in a quandary, as to shorten its length or reformat its questions diminishes its well-established predictability. Still worse, to simplify its sixteen results of four assessment categories also weakens its basic valid structure. Yet no one should reduce its impact upon legitimizing the predictive strength of Psychometric Science.
I researched this dynamic for almost thirty years, having a keen interest in Cognitive Psychology that focuses on our internal processes that creates perception, problem solving, creativity and critical thinking. I found that in asking simple questions that revealed a Solution Strategy the Cognitive Typology of the individual quickly emerged. There was no need for sixteen various combinations, as there were only four reoccurring Thinking Behaviors.
More than behaviors, I began to consider them as Energies, that later morphed into their most external manifestation; Talent. So, in revealing how the individual solved the problem presented, their Talent Energy was as individual as a fingerprint. The testing proved this out in the predictive results that followed all the well-established standards.
I further advanced this theory to the social sciences; in the study of Relational Interaction. More than even the Talent Energy the Relationship Mindset was far more significant to the times in which we lived; as in the complexity of our world, Collaboration is the keystone of successful leadership. The same simple format yielded most successful results. Four basic responses that were centered on winning and losing, this perception formed the complete worldview of how the individual interacted with everyone.
In the simplicity of the testing and it assessment results, integrating this onto a technology platform would only make this instrument even more effective.
Unlike Gamification that possesses neither the breath or length of successful results, our Talent Types System took the very best of the Old School, well researched and tested model and joined it to the benefits of twenty first century technology. The final result, is a predictive instrument that can save vast amounts of time in making accurate assessments.
For the employer, it provides an insightful picture of the candidate’s suitability for the role. I came to call this Talent Match, as our research repeatedly discovered linkages between certain Thinking Styles and certain professions. This overall snap shot revealed their natural Aptitude which would provide them statistically with a more predictive opportunity to be successful.
This Talent Expertise was further strengthened in our assessment of Talent Growththat provided the candidate and the employer with additional information to create a long-term improvement objectives.
I added one more feature to our Talent Types System that assessed CharacterLeadership. This ten-question protocol followed our same simple format formula and added yet another dimension to the individual profile. The Integrity Mindset just like the Relationship Mindset defined the ethical outlook of the individual.
The structure of the testing is beneficial to all candidates as it creates a consistent environment where everyone is treated fairly. For those that do not interview well, this leveled the playing field. For those who are charming, and know how to pitch it well, it gave a look behind the mask.
All of this information was assessed in fifty questions, that you could take the test on the privacy of your IPhone. This fifteen-minute user friendly experience told Your Talent Story…Aptitude, Attitude, Expertise and Growth. Still better, for the employer because all of these metrics are numerically quantified with a standard measurement on a APP Platform, at the speed of light the most suitable candidates emerges.
What I like best about our Talent Types System is how it showcases MERIT, which is so easily hidden under the shadow of Privilege. Working hard, striving for the best, being a good person of sound character that can work objectively with everyone is the successful leadership of our times. It is important to advance Opportunity for these type of individuals, that do not have a Harvard pedigree but do possess the solid qualities that your customers can depend upon. These are the people that make the world turn …Every Day!
So, unlike Gamification that works on some theoretical neuro-scientific platform by pushing keyboard buttons to fill in a box as fast as you can, we deal in Real World behaviors that are applicable to our collective 365 24/7 reality.
I feel a depth of gratitude to all of my professors who were the young disciples of these psychoanalysis giants. This Old-School connection is well-established science that supports our research. Equally, I am overwhelmed by my very young technologists that most diligently take this information and formulate it into the applicational package for another generation to benefit.
I often muse that all of the Cognitive Thinkers …Plato, Descartes, Kant and even Jung would delight in out Plug-&-Play Platform…. as but yet another link in the chain of Self Knowledge.