f it hasn’t happened to you already, it will. The MBTI® reports one thing, but the client is unsure. The code doesn’t fit perfectly. And by now you’re both confused. Maybe you’re stuck in "paralysis analysis" with no end in sight for revealing your client’s best fit. Or perhaps it seems like you’ve dug yourself into a hole and everything you say or do just digs you in deeper. Don’t you hate that helpless feeling?
Following is a list of strategies and supplemental materials designed to pop you out of that hole and reveal the personality type code that best suits your client. One or a combination of these strategies should ensure your ability to correctly identify a best-fit type code.
Strategy #1—Use Good Descriptions
Remember, the MBTI is accurate 70% of the time at best*, so it’s quite natural that even the least skeptical client may question their tabulated result. Keep in mind that, ethically, one never tells a client what their type is—it’s not even a good idea to suggest a type for them. (Studies show that clients tend to skew their choices to match the type code of their type administrator! Certainly we don’t want clients choosing their own best-fit type to please us, no matter how flattering that may seem.) Bias is always an obstacle to accurate type selection—whether negative or positive!
The best strategy for overcoming that challenge is to provide your client with well-written materials and grant them space to figure it out on their own using a self-discovery process. The finest type descriptions we’ve come across are in Understanding Yourself and Others: Descriptions for Self-Discovery by Linda Berens and Dario Nardi. These portraits are superior because:
- The authors interviewed real people in order to create the composite portraits. (This means the descriptions aren’t hypothetical, but based on real-life people in their own words.)
- The descriptions are offered 3 ways:
- a brief "snapshot"
- how we see that type
- how that type sees itself
(This framework provides a 360° view of each of the 16 types.)
Our experience is that clients relate to these portraits better than any other descriptions we’ve come across. This alone greatly increases the likelihood of their deciding on a best fit!
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