MBTI® Users Conference—Creating a Culture of Clarity / It Doesn’t Just Flatter You

06 Dec 2016

Continuing my overview of Patrick Kerwin’s session at the MBTI® Users Conference, Patrick noted that the criticism that the MBTI® tool just flatters people was somewhat odd. Those of us who know what the MBTI tool is really about know that it’s not a diagnostic tool. It’s not even a test. “Test” implies results of good and bad, pass or fail. The MBTI descriptions may indeed seem flattering at times. All of us bring something to every situation we are in. All of us have gifts. That may seem flattering. However, if we overuse those gifts, then things do not appear so flattering after all. For example, when I overuse my preferences for Intuition and Perceiving I can come across as a bit unfocused and even a little flighty.

I like to ask people, “Are you using your preferences, or are your preferences using you?” If it’s the latter, then they may be coming across as a bit of a caricature of their preferences. I see this in people who overuse Extraversion or Introversion. Someone who overuses Extraversion may tend to overwhelm others in certain situations. Someone who overuses Introversion may tend to underwhelm situations. Neither example is very flattering.

Want to read more about the Users Conference? Check out my previous blogs in this series:

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