1. Avoiding the Damaging Effects of Labeling

    In a LinkedIn discussion group on whether the MBTI® instrument is outdated and irrelevant, the conversation emerged to the point of discussing labeling that happens with most personality tools. The tendency to label others and label themselves as in “I’m a xxxxx, therefore I can’t do….” At the end the person who posted lamented that he had yet to find an organization that fosters deep understanding and went for the short, quick labeling. I decided to share my reply to that post: I think there several things to consider. 1) We have to vet the tools and the materials for language that holds the models lightly and avoids the labeling effect and select as much as possible ones that do not. 2) We have to watch our own language as we use the tools and materials to keep from labeling. For example…”someone with preferences for” or “Those with a Catalyst temperament tend to….: Avoid absolutes and definites. We are human complex systems so there is nothing that is absolutely predictive. 3) Constantly manage the tendency of our clients to use them as labels. Part of our job is in the contracting up front about how the materials are to be...