Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Another management Personality Test

I am in Yokohama for a two-day training entitled "Coaching". I thought that, since it is being offered by the company, and they are putting me up in the very nice The Grand intercontinental Yokohama hotel, that it would either be 1) Dead boring, with the coffee in the lounge the only thing that saved me; and/or 2) Very specific and focused on certain corporate strategies or goals. I took it because I tend to have communications 'issues' with those who have worked for me. Before I get someone else working for me, I thought that something like this might help.
The introduction sort of was about 'Coaching' as a professional discipline. In this course, the instructor promised, we would learn this discipline. Hmm...at least I didn't fall asleep! Just to clarify for anyone who might be interested: I have taken goofy company-sponsored training courses from both western and (today) Japanese trainers, and there is no huge difference in their approach. We did a lot of role playing, which I generally enjoy, and near the end of the day we took a kind of personality 'assessment' (read 'test'). This test was called the CAPS test, with CAPS standing for Controller, Analyzer, Promoter, and Supporter. I looked it up on the net when I got back, and it looks like it is only given by the company that held this training, coach A. It does, however, look very similar to a test called the DPSA, which stands for Driver, Promoter Analyzer, and Supporter, which is given by an Australian company called Myprofile Pty Limited.
It is a bit long, but I am going to list the questions below (I sort of wish Blogger supported forms, because then I could let you take it, and generate a score, which would be cool, and kind of support my geeky nature that can't seem to be quite satisfied with mere writing...wait a second! Brain fart! I could do it by editing the HTML text directly, and using JavaScript! That will be another project, though, so I will first just put it up with no scoring):(ok, ok, I just started to translate this thing, all 40 questions, into English, and realised it is going to probably be a bit of work, so the whole thing becomes a new project...I will try to have it done by the weekend).
Anyway, basically the result was interesting, and points to me maybe mellowing out slightly: I scored higher on the Promoter side than on the Controller side, which sort of surprised me: When I took the DISC (I forget what it stands for) about two years ago, I scored on the extremely aggressively success-oriented side. The easygoing, creative, promoter side this time, was a bit of a surprise, but I still scored high on the success-oriented side.
Change is probably a good thing.
I realised something today, too: I came to my career fairly late, and via a fairly circumlocuitous (is that really a word? Yes, I think so...) route, and moved into a fairly high position in my current career fairly early. I spent many years doing more people-oriented, more creative things, and to some extent I have really focused myself in the last few years much more on the things that are success factors of what I am now doing, or at least what I thought they were. I think the truth is that I am a weirdo for an I.T. manager: I majored in Asian studies, taught, did magazine journalism, wrote a book, did programming (which is actually fairly creative), did development of websites, did pre-sales engineering, product management, project managment, and now, suddenly, I am in I.T. Though to some extent a natural progression, there is also something un-natural for me about not doing something more creative with my life. At the same time, I am a geek, and it was clearly my own interests that got me where I am at, so it is hard to say that I am not where I should be. One of those internal conflicts that I need to sort...

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