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The Power of Assessments

by Ken Keis, MBA

True Assessments do not create results; they only document what is already true!

Our entire lives operate around measurement. Without it we simply cannot function. Think about our modern world? Without measurement, our economies and lives would literally collapse. People’s lives around the world have been transformed using this strategy of assessment

What is an assessment?

Assessment is any process, tool, or methodology that benchmarks and measures a set of criteria for individuals, teams, or organizations. It is a strategy to accelerate and improve the performance of any individual, team, or organization. Like money, volume, or distance, assessments are a form of measurement that helps you know where you are and where you are going.

It should be noted that assessments are typically not the same as psychological tests, which require professional debriefs and interventions. Our experience shows that people don’t want to take a test; they want a process that will assist them to improve with or without some kind of complicated explanation. Individuals can’t implement what they can’t understand.

On the other side is this: Don’t trivialize the assessment process and make it cute and fun without substance. Too many times, I have watched as speakers have tried to explain a powerful concept by comparing people to some type of animal. Sorry, being compared to a dog does not equip me to win.

What do assessments measure? 

There are no limitations to what assessments can measure—personal style, job style, job fit, job competencies, customer service, leadership skills, team compatibility, character traits, aptitude, and more—including interpersonal and self-management skills and organizational conditions such as teamwork, employee morale, and job satisfaction. Other areas of measurement include values, health, self-worth, integrity, and trust factors.

Who can benefit from completing an assessment and having the results interpreted?

Everyone at some level can benefit from assessment—individuals, business partners, families (kids and teens, too), and non-profit and volunteer organizations. No matter the size of a business and the background of the individual, the use of assessment as a measurement strategy is appropriate.

How can you effectively use assessments in personal and/or organizational applications?

  • Assessing for assessment’s sake is counter-productive so establish the primary purpose and the items you want to measure.
  • Include everyone related to the project, family, team, or business unit as part of the assessment process. If assessments are developed correctly, they should provide a common language for individuals to use as they move forward.
  • It’s not the results that are important, but what you will do with them.
  • Never abuse the privilege; keep confidentiality, if required.
  • Ensure that the assessment, criteria, and process are valid. Many well-known and popular assessments unfortunately are of poor design and quality. Keep yourself informed; make sure you select the assessments that best apply to your situation.

 

A Success Story

I had the opportunity to use a values assessment process with the managers for a national retail chain. Because of our assessment process, they were able to benchmark, establish, and share their core values with each other in less than one hour. Many commented that they learned more about themselves and their colleagues in a few minutes than they had in years—before this assessment strategy.

The use of assessments is a must for any progressive organization or individual. If you have not included assessment as an option in your business, professional, or personal development plans, the time to start is now.

Ken Keis, MBA, is President and CEO of Consulting Resource Group International, Inc., a global human development, assessment, and publishing business for over 30 years. Ken specializes in assessment system certification training, “Living and Leading on Purpose” seminars, and understanding and teaching personal style, leadership development, and career management. Go towww.crgleader.com or www.kenkeis.com or phone 604-852-0566.

 

For more on career development and assessments, be sure to visit
ContactPoint’s Summer Bulletin 2010.
Profile photo of Ken Keis
Ken Keis, MBA, CPC is an internationally known author, speaker, and consultant--Ken is also the President and CEO of CRG Consulting Resource Group International, Inc. He uses CRG's unique developmental models to assist individuals, families, teams, and organizations to realize their full potential, and live On Purpose

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