I recently heard a certified coach give a presentation on communication and the use of personality assessments. The assessment the presenter had the audience complete was the Personal Coaching Styles Inventory (PCSI). The PCSI identifies four natural personality styles. It is used to help individuals effectively communicate with others.
There are variations of leadership, personality, and behavioral assessments that are used by professional coaches. For example, DISC Profile, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Leadership Action Profile, and Entrepreneurial Strengths Assessment. These assessments are used to gather information about clients and broaden their perspectives.
The purpose of an assessment is to help individuals identify their strengths, dominating personality, natural behaviors, and values. The results can be obvious, surprising, or disturbing. Regardless of the results, individuals gain awareness and information of themselves that can lead to purposeful actions.
Once a client has received an assessment report, a coach will ask two basic questions: “What have you learned from the report?” and “What do you want to do with the information?”
The coach’s role is to coach the client on what he/she learned that could lead to the awareness of specific behaviors, motivators, and feelings. For example, a client’s report indicates the client is highly directive. The coach asks the client “What is the impact of your highly directive style?” and/or “How do you see yourself interacting with others?” These questions cause the client to self-reflect on one’s own motives and behaviors. As a result, the client decides if specific behaviors need to change. If a change is necessary, the coach assists in identifying an action plan.
Assessments are valuable tools to increase awareness and broaden one’s perspective. In a coaching relationship, assessments provide the client and the coach with a wealth of information that can lead to self-awareness, growth, action, and opportunities. Assessments can also validate a client’s successful behaviors, which require no action or a need to change.