What is My Reality? What is Yours? The Possible Limitations of Evaluation Tools.

Becoming self aware and using this knowledge helps us to lead fulfilling lives.  We have many tests/tools that evaluate personal characteristics to help with this such as EQ, MBTI and StrengthFinder so you become better at knowing yourself.  Yet, how often is it taken into account what language/culture you are part of.

Let’s look at a real life example, a colleague of mine.  You have grown up in China.  Coming to the US and doing the MBTI test in English and Chinese results in significant differences.  Then the next question is to what extent the latest MBTI test creators – originally designed by English cultural people – understand the Chinese culture and language to create an accurate test?

Becoming more self aware is great and it is nice to have tools that facilitate that. At the same time it is just as important to question the underpinnings of these tools, their possible biases and limitations.

Examples of the role language plays in behavior as well as links to interesting talks and more can be found here on the TED website.

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