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First developed over 20 years ago, strengths-based assessments have been growing in popularity in recent decades among people leaders, coaches, and consultants. This is hardly surprising given the considerable benefits they offer organizations across virtually every stage of the talent lifecycle. Studies show that when organizations incorporate strengths-based assessment and development practices into their people strategy, they can achieve significant gains in both people and business outcomes. The ROI of strengths tests includes improvements in hiring outcomes, performance, engagement and retention, employee development, career progression, teamwork, well-being, and financial results.

Strengths and talent assessments are essentially measuring the same thing. They are both performance-based measures of the underlying qualities that energize people and enable them to do their best work. The main difference is that assessments describing themselves as “talent assessments” recognize an important distinction between talents and strengths that is often overlooked. One’s talents need to be optimized through skill building and experience to deliver value to the organization and be regarded as strengths by others. For example, one of my top 5 talents on the TalentPredix™ profile (which measures 20 critical work-related talents) is Leading. This means I am energized by inspiring and guiding people to achieve shared goals. However, over the years, I have had to develop a lot of skills, behaviours, and agility in the way I use this talent so that it is used effectively, creates a positive impact and is considered a valuable strength by others. At TalentPredix, we therefore talk about strengths being “fully optimized talents”.

Unlike popular personality tests such as MBTI and DISC, strengths-based assessments don’t pigeonhole people into oversimplified, and sometimes imprecise, personality types and categories. Instead, they focus on understanding what’s unique and different about people’s talents and behaviours and how people can bring the best of themselves to their job and career. Even when people have similar talents and strengths, strengths assessments recognize that people will apply them in different ways, depending on their aspirations, motivations, values, and background.

After 2 decades of use around the world by all types of organizations, strengths assessments must now evolve and adapt to the fast-changing needs of a modern workplace. Yet, in recent years, we have seen very little evolution of strengths-based assessments. Like many well-established personality tests, it appears that strengths tests have been slow to adapt and embrace innovation. To move strengths assessments into the new world of work, our team has created a next-generation strengths assessment that examines how combinations of talents, values and motivations can help people achieve higher levels of performance, career thriving and well-being at work. To reflect the fast-changing, volatile world we now live in, one of our four talent zones measures “Navigating Change”, which we define as “navigating and responding effectively to change”. Surprisingly, none of the other strengths assessments on the market today measures this vital strength area in such a targeted way. Uniquely, our assessment also examines the specific behaviours that show up when people overuse their strengths, in other words, when they use them too much or in the wrong way. For example, when one of my strengths, “Creativity”, is overused it can lead to me coming up with ideas that are unrealistic and unworkable

Yet there is plenty of work still to do by strengths test publishers and strengths practitioners to keep these assessments relevant and value-adding in future. Some of the opportunities for further research and innovation include:

  1. How do different combinations of strengths help us predict important employee outcomes, including job performance, engagement, readiness for progression, well-being, etc.?
  2. How do strengths combine with values, motivations, abilities, and other key human success factors to predict job success and other important employee outcomes?
  3. How can strengths assessment and development help employers bridge critical skills gaps in the workforce and support upskilling and reskilling so they are fit for the future?
  4. How can strengths-based approaches help employers create more flexible and motivating career options and pathways for employees?
  5. How can teams combine and leverage diverse strengths to generate better team cohesion and results?
  6. How can different strengths enable people to navigate major transitions (incl. onboarding, career changes, promotions, redundancies, retirement, etc.) effectively in ways that are meaningful to them?
  7. How do overused strengths (and combinations of strengths) impact performance and relationships and which pose greater career derailment risks for leaders and other employees?

There is another important opportunity where we believe strengths-based assessment and development tools could play a vital role in future. We would love to see other strengths test publishers, HR and L&D practitioners, and voluntary sector organizations working more closely together to bring the enormous benefits of this approach to the growing numbers of disadvantaged and marginalized job seekers and employees. A strengths-based hiring and development approach can help these people by empowering them to present their strengths, skills, and other standout qualities to employers in the best possible light. Moreover, by valuing and developing their strengths, disadvantaged job seekers and employees will develop self-confidence, agility and resilience, vital attributes to secure meaningful employment and progression. There are dozens of ways to help these groups. For example, TalentPredix provides significant discounts to companies in the voluntary sector and contributes a percentage of our sales revenue to charities helping disadvantaged job seekers.

Strengths assessments are now widely adopted by organizations in the UK and globally for numerous talent applications, including hiring, employee development, team building, creating great places to work and career progression. However, after two successful decades, strengths test publishers and practitioners need to adapt and innovate their tools and practices to meet the changing needs of the modern workplace.

Click here to discover how we help organizations unleash exceptional talent and thriving workplaces.

London and Melbourne, 14 November 2022. TalentPredix Ltd is delighted to announce that it is launching in Australia through a partnership with Renata Bernarde. Bernarde is a Job-Hunting Expert, Career Strategist, and founder of Pantala, an organization aimed at increasing career literacy for professionals in the corporate sector. She is also the host of the Job Hunting Podcast, a podcast praised by industry leaders and listened to in over 100 countries.

TalentPredix™, an innovative next-generation strengths assessment system, provides a comprehensive measure of people’s unique talents, strengths, and potential. It transforms the way clients hire, develop, and engage talent, enabling businesses to improve talent outcomes and unleash the full potential of their people.

I am delighted to partner with James Brook and his team, and support TalentPredix’s expansion. After delivering the assessment to hundreds of clients and students, I am confident it’s the best assessment tool available today to support career design and planning. The comprehensive report has impressed even the most experienced executives. It’s wonderful to finally be able to work with a tool I strongly believe can provide great value to my clients” says Renata Bernarde, TalentPredix’s new global partner in Australia.

I’m also looking forward to training practitioners in Australia to use the individual and group reports to support their organizations,” says Renata Bernarde. “Culture, team performance, and supporting individuals have become more challenging for HR leaders since the pandemic. Talentpredix™ is a great tool for our times.

James Brook, founder and CEO of TalentPredix™, comments: “It is great to welcome Renata Bernarde and her team at Pantala in Australia to our fast-growing community of global partners. The way we work is changing faster than ever, yet most workplace assessment tools haven’t kept pace with these changes. The ability to uncover a candidate’s unique talents and strengths is what sets TalentPredix™ apart and suits modern thinking around amplifying individuality and strengths in the workplace. When organizations understand and optimize people’s unique talents and strengths, their results and capacity to transform the success of the organization are significantly multiplied.

TalentPredix™ can be used in different stages of the employee life cycle, from recruitment and team building to career development and preparing people for future roles. Bringing out the best in people enables them to thrive, accelerates performance and encourages collaboration. Applied organization-wide, the results help businesses to combine unique talents and create cognitively diverse high-performing teams and workplaces.

We invite you to take the assessment:

If you are a member of the press or a content creator, please contact Renata Bernarde (see contact details below) to have access to the assessment before 30 November 2022. It takes only 20 minutes to complete the questionnaire, and you will receive a 19-page report with your top talents, career drivers and personal values, as well as recommendations to apply them at work.

For further information, contact:

Melbourne, Australia
Renata Bernarde, Director, Pantala Pty Ltd
renata@pantala.com.au
+61 402 522 658

London, UK
James Brook, CEO and Founder of TalentPredix Ltd
james.brook@talentpredix.com

London (September 2022) – TalentPredix Ltd is delighted to announce that it is launching in the Middle East through a partnership with Resilient WorkForce ME. TalentPredix™, an innovative next-generation strengths assessment system, provides a comprehensive measure of people’s unique talents, strengths, and potential. It transforms the way clients hire, develop, and engage talent, enabling businesses to improve talent outcomes and unleash the full potential of their people.

“As a psychologist and coach, it is crucial for me to have an assessment tool that I can use throughout the employee lifecycle and is based on thorough research and the latest science. I am very excited to be introducing TalentPredix™ to the Middle East and have already had some amazing feedback from existing clients. Clients will be able to support their employees with the use of a single tool, which is both time and cost-efficient. TalentPredix™ is a tool that not only assesses talents but also an individual’s values and career drivers. This unique combination will help my clients with recruitment, talent development and retention. It is user-friendly and helps people to use their talents more efficiently and effectively. This strengths-based assessment will transform the way we recruit, develop, coach and work with talent in the Middle East.” says Agata Perepeczko, founder of Resilient WorkForce ME.

James Brook, founder and CEO of TalentPredix™, comments: “The way we work is changing faster than ever, yet most workplace assessment tools haven’t kept pace with these changes. The ability to uncover a candidate’s unique talents and strengths is what sets TalentPredix™ apart and suits modern thinking around amplifying individuality and strengths in the workplace. When organizations understand and optimize people’s unique talents and strengths, their results and capacity to transform the success of the organization are significantly multiplied.”

TalentPredix™ can be used in different stages of the employee life cycle, from recruitment and team building to career development and preparing people for future roles. Bringing out the best in people enables them to thrive, accelerates performance and encourages collaboration. Applied organization-wide, the results help businesses to combine unique talents and create cognitively diverse high-performing teams and workplaces.

If you want to know more about our coaching and consulting solutions, click here.

Talent and strengths-assessment have been gaining popularity in recent decades among people leaders, coaches, and consultants. This is hardly surprising given the potential benefits they offer organizations across virtually every stage of the talent lifecycle, from hiring and onboarding to improving employee performance and career development. In this blog, I will answer some of the key questions regarding this relatively new approach to understanding and getting the best from people.   

What is the difference between a talent and strengths assessment?

Essentially, they are very similar in that they both measure underlying or innate qualities that energize people and enable them to do their best work. The main difference is that assessments describing themselves as “talent assessments” recognise an important distinction between talent and strengths that is often overlooked by people professionals and business psychologists. Talents aren’t equivalent to strengths as they require upskilling and experience to bring value to the organization and be perceived as strengths by others. The term “strength” implies a high level of competence, and competence requires skill, practice, perseverance, and the right conditions to develop. At TalentPredix, we therefore talk about strengths being the same as “optimized talents”.

How does this differ from personality tests?

Personality tests measure people’s personality types or traits and how these are likely to manifest as typical or normal patterns of behaviour in different aspects of their lives.

Most of these tests involve the test takers responding to a series of questions or adjectives based on the extent to which it applies to them. Some poorly designed tests have as few as a dozen questions or adjectives while more accurate ones are typically longer as they validate responses using similar questions that are asked in different ways.

From a scientific perspective, the most accurate and reliable personality tests today are typically based on the Big 5 Factor model of personality which shows that personality can basically be measured and described according to 5 key traits: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Other personality tests like the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator sort people into broad personality types or preferences that people have for certain traits over others.

Are traditional personality tests still relevant for today’s world of work?

Many widely used personality profiles like MBTI and DISC sort people into broad personality types, categories, and even colours, e.g., extroverts versus introverts. The principal reason such assessments have gained widespread adoption and use in business is that they offer a quick and convenient way to describe people’s personality. Although the intention behind most of these tests is overwhelmingly positive, in practice their potential harmful effects have come under increasing scrutiny by the media in recent times. At the heart of the criticism of these assessments is the inconsistent and poor evidence that such tests reliably predict job performance, retention, progression, or any other vital outcomes important to business effectiveness. So, beyond providing a framework to categorize people and supporting their journeys of self-discovery, they offer little or no predictive value to enable organizations to make better hiring, development, and other talent decisions.

Because they classify people into oversimplified (and often imprecise) personality types and categories, it is also becoming increasingly clear that they can even be counterproductive to DEI aims and goals. In the modern world, it is widely accepted that it is crucial to create workplaces that value diversity and inclusion. This involves discovering and leveraging people’s individuality and uniqueness rather than labelling and pigeon-holing people. 

What are the advantages of talent and strength-based assessments?

Consistent with DEI aims of building diverse and inclusive workplaces, this new generation of assessments focuses on understanding what’s unique and different about people’s talents, strengths, and behaviours.  They capture not just people’s innate talents, but also the type of work that enables them to perform at their best. These assessments also recognize that even when people have similar talents and strengths, they will apply them in different ways, depending on their aspirations, background, and the way they interpret and respond to different situations.

How does potential fit in?

Potential is the capacity to grow the capabilities required to be successful in a bigger role, or one involving greater responsibility. However, potential is not just about having the innate qualities to succeed. It involves being highly motivated to work hard to build relevant skills and achieve one’s dreams and aspirations. Therefore, it is important for people professionals to help people discover their combined talents, career motivations and values, as greater awareness of all these will empower them to find career pathways that are engaging and meaningful for them, and where they can thrive and do their best work.

If you would like to try out TalentPredix™, our next-generation talent and strengths assessment system, contact us at info@talentpredix.com

Watch the video below to discover how TalentPredix™, the next generation talent and strengths assessment system, transforms the way you hire, develop, and engage talent, enabling you to improve talent outcomes and unleash the full potential of your people.

Do you like what you hear? Sign up for our next training program here or request your free trial here.

Listen to what a few of our TalentPredix™ users and practitioners have to say about this next generation talent and strengths assessment system and our training program.

Do you like what you hear? Sign up for our next training program here or request your free trial here.

Grit, a relatively new psychological concept offers fascinating insight into why some people succeed in their careers while others fail to achieve their full potential.

Angela Duckworth, a leading author and professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania defines Grit as the capacity to sustain both effort and interest in projects or tasks that take months or longer to complete. It is essentially a combination of perseverance and passion. The latter can best be defined as a “fire in the belly”, or positive energy to achieve and outperform against one’s goals.

Duckworth has found that people who are high in Grit don’t deviate from their goals, even in the absence of positive feedback and in the face of adversity. Although research on the concept is still in its early stages and far from conclusive, Grit appears to be positively related to success in many spheres of life and has been linked to important outcomes such as improved performance, career success, learning motivation, commitment and resilience.

So how can companies incorporate this promising new concept into their people management practices? Below are 3 ideas to get you started:

Assess for strengths and motivations when hiring people

The mantra “hire for attitude as well as skill” is widely espoused, yet few recruiters know how to translate this into practical action during the hiring process. One of the ways you can do this is by using strengths interviews and strengths assessments to measure not only the required skills and experience for the role, but also the person’s strengths, motivations, and values. A good alignment between these softer human factors and the needs of the role, as well as the work culture, will enable you to recruit people who are motivated to go way beyond the minimum requirements of the role. When people’s strengths, motivations and values fit the job and company well, they are far more likely to deliver excellence, embrace learning opportunities and stay longer with your organization.

Stretch people in areas they enjoy most

To develop higher levels of grit, ensure your people are provided with stretch opportunities that push them beyond their comfort zone. However, ensure this stretch is positive in nature. Positive stretch involves discovering a person’s underlying talents and strengths, then challenging them to take these to the next level by developing skills, experience, and flexibility in the way they apply these. It is important to provide coaching, support and feedback when encouraging people to stretch their strengths to maintain high levels of energy and avoid negative stress, panic and burnout.

Promote a growth mindset and learning culture

Perseverance involves working hard to achieve goals and sticking with a task even in the face of immense pressure and setbacks. There are different factors that accelerate perseverance, but one of the most important appears to be the extent to which people are encouraged to learn from setbacks and take ownership for their own learning. People with a growth-oriented mindset are better learners and demonstrate greater agility in adjusting to changes and setbacks than those who don’t believe they can learn new skills and abilities required for success.

Organizations can encourage growth mindsets by creating a supportive environment where failure is seen as part and parcel of the learning process and reasonable mistakes are tolerated. They can also ensure regular feedback and coaching through engaging performance dialogues and regular manager and co-worker feedback channels to empower people to learn, grow and improve their performance.

It is also important to create a work culture characterized by high levels of interpersonal connection and collaborative learning. By building strong support networks (both face-to-face and virtual) such as collaborative platforms and tools, hangouts, brainstorming/brainwriting sessions and socials, organizations will provide people with greater opportunities to solve challenges collaboratively, experiment and deliver solutions that multiply business results.

Further Reading:

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, 2016, Angela Duckworth. London: Penguin

If you would like to find out more about our talent coaching solutions, contact us at info@talentpredix.com

Welcome to the first episode of Talent Trailblazers! In this episode, Elsa Baptista interviews James Brook, Founder and CEO of TalentPredix™. Tune in to listen to an exciting conversation about talent and strengths assessment, talent development and talent management.

Organizations are currently facing several challenges to attract and retain talent. James Brook explains how technology can strengthen the recruitment process in the current climate.

Click here to read more from Information Age.

The preoccupation for a diverse and inclusive environment is an increasingly growing topic in the organizational world as diversity is linked to a range of positive outcomes. As James Brook explains, talent assessment can be a valuable tool to build diverse and inclusive teams.

Click here to read more from HR News.