Why I Love MBTI!

I really LOVE the MBTI and I LOVE the effect it has when working with women (It works for men too; but I primarily work with women). M.B.T.I. stands for Myers Briggs Type Indicator and you can find more factual details about it via this link.


I tend to love it more for what it’s not. A lot of psychological profiling is very judgemental, the MBTI is not. It won’t fill you full of ‘should’ and ‘oughts’ or worse give you as sense of inadequacy. It simply helps you understand yourself in greater depth.

When I was doing my post graduate training in social work we were often subjected to (I use the word advisedly) various psychological tests to determine our attitudes, suitability for the role etc. I rarely found these helpful or enlightening. Standard tools and questionnaires work on a right or wrong approach; there is a yardstick by which you are judged, a perfect way to be.

For example, consider assertiveness. If you take an assertiveness questionnaire (and I confess, I do sometimes use one when training to promote discussion and debate) it will assume that there is a degree of assertiveness that is desirable. That will probably be measured at 100% with any score coming at over 80% being good. It can’t take into account the fact that you are totally assertive at work but find it hard to tell your sister in law that you want to stay home next Christmas! And if you feel perfectly comfortable with your assertiveness levels but come in at 65% you may feel a bit of  a failure.

No Pass or Fail

You cannot pass or fail the Myers Briggs Type Indicator. There is no right or wrong, no 100% score to achieve, there is just you. You are always in control. It is one of the most respected profiling tools in the world and one with a very high retest probability. Which in laywomen’s terms means you have a high chance of getting the same answers however many times you take it! (The only exception to this is if it’s taken when young, while our personalities are still developing).

Team Work

Although the M.B.T.I is often used in groups and can be great for helping teams understand each other, I personally will only use it for the first time it in a one to one situation.  I trained at the original MBTI college in the U.S and part of my ethical contract with them is that results are always confidential to the individual. The individual must be given space and time to fully understand and agree with their type before being asked if they are happy to share.

Peer Pressure

In my experience it is not possible to do this in a group situation; the pressure of peers to join in (however subtle and unintentional) can be too great. That said, if all team members are genuinely happy to talk about their result, and genuinely happy with the type they have, it can be a phenomenal tool in promoting understanding!

If you’re interested in discovering more about yourself using the M.B.T.I. either as a one off session or part of a coaching package, please do give me a call on 01761 438749  or email me. I have a great special offer running throughout the Spring!

MBTI, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Myers-Briggs, the MBTI logo and Introduction to Type are registered trademarks of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Trust. Strong Interest Inventory, FIRO-B, SkillsOne, and Davies-Black are registered trademarks and CPI 260, CPI, California Psychological Inventory, the CPP logo, the FIRO-B logo and the CPI 260 logo are trademarks of CPP, Inc.


Posted on March 23rd, 2010 by

4 Responses to “Why I Love MBTI!”

  1. I love the MBTI too. Investing in getting qualified to administer it was one of the best things that I did as it not only helped me to understand myself and others but enabled me to get lots of extra work by having another string to my bow! I always find when I do the feedback sessions with clients after they have completed the questionniare that they are amazed at how accurate their profiles are – scarily accurate!

    • Jane says:

      Yes, it’s great isn’t it, Sharon! And really useful in all sort of coaching situations. It’s never ‘failed’ yet!

  2. Thanks for that – really interesting!

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