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Other approaches to the study of personality (II) – Other tests


David Keirsey (1921 –2013) is another psychologist who took as inspiration both the four temperaments of Hippocrates and Jung’s theories to write his book “Please Understand Me”, and later the practical book “Please Understand Me II.” In his books, he described a personality model and a test that classifies people according to four types of temperaments. 

After conducting the corresponding assessment, a person can identify as one of the following predominant temperaments: Guardian, Artist, Rational, or Idealist. Since there are also sub-classifications, there are a total of 16 possible options. 

There are apparent similarities between the Keirsey temperaments and the Myers-Briggs®MBTI® indicator. However, there are also some important differences. Keirsey’s Temperaments assessment is also a widely used tool in the business world and human resources.


The Genos Emotional Intelligence model shows a set of emotionally intelligent workplace behavior competencies. Competencies represent skills and behaviors, based on underlying abilities and experiences, that are measurable and observable. The six emotionally intelligent leadership competencies are: Emotional Self-Awareness, Emotional Awareness of Others, Authenticity Emotional Reasoning, Emotional Self-Management and Positive Influence. You can find this and more information on their website if you are interested in it.

Big five

Another trendy model in the study of personality is known as “The Big Five” model. As its name implies, it describes the five main factors of a person’s personality. The factors are Openness to experience (O), Awareness (C), Extraversion (E), Friendliness (A), and Neuroticism (N). This model is also known as OCEAN for its acronym.

Among the main characteristics of this model is that it has incorporated a fifth factor (Neuroticism) and is a rapid test validated by international institutions. But, one of the essential characteristics is that the results are based on spectra and not on fixed values. 

Hogan and others

The Hogan assessments are very famous for being complex and provide a lot of information regarding the personality of the person who takes the test. In the same way, The ProfileXT provides quantitative information, which makes it a very interesting tool as well.

Other personality assessments include: The Checkpoint 360, Leadership Circle, TRACOM Social Styles, Harrison, StrengthsFinder, Gallup Q12, Eysenck’s personality inventory, Katherine Benziger’s Brain Type Theory, Belbin’s Team Role Model (Belbin®), FIRO-B® Tool, the Birkman Method®, and even a model developed by Gurdjieff in the early 20th century, called the Enneagram of Personality. 


As we can see, there are tests of all kinds and for all tastes. Some qualitative, even others quantitative. Each coach or psychologist can choose the one that seems best to him or her or the one licensed or trained to take. I always recommend looking for people with a certification in the test they assist, especially in case you want a debrief session on the results.

There are many free online versions of these and other personality tests, but please take the results with a grain of salt. These free tests may not be as accurate as the paid versions; needless to say, that some of these tests can be pretty expensive depending on the complexity of the test.

There is no one better than another, just preferences. What matters is what we do with the information we get from testing. In that regard, coaching can help you take advantage of the data you get from a personality test. If you are interested in knowing your DISC personality or would like a coaching session on the subject, do not hesitate to contact me via the web.

Alexander Martinez

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