MBTI® Case Study

Posted by Jan Craft - Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Mar 12


I have been reading a recent case study introduced by Reema Singh of the National Australia Bank describing their company's significant commitment to achieving high performance outcomes for their teams. The core focus of the process was introducing the MBTI® framework which initially involved teams in five full day MBTI® workshop sessions. Over the course of a year more there were more than 500 MBTI® debriefs with staff. The interest and buzz generated in these sessions produced much positive feedback and improved outcomes for NAB managers and their teams.What is remarkable about this initiative was the resolve of the NAB to commit the time and resources to a programme of staff development over time. The outcomes are worth noting.

  • Learning a common language so that people could understand each other. 
  • Feedback came from people in teams committed to exploring new behaviours and putting them into practice. 
  • The MBTI® sessions created a forum for participants to challenge, question, share and support each other.
  • Team sharing provided "such relevant and specific feedback" that many areas of behaviour have been identified and are being actively addressed and improved on by the team.

The foundational learning the MBTI® has provided now allows for the further development of teams and leaders in related areas such as change leadership, conflict, communication and other development programs.The NAB has gone on to developing team programs based around Patrick Lencioni's The Five Dysfunctions of a Team model. Behavioural profiling is a first and integral step in overcoming the first dysfunction 'absence of trust'. Pat recommends the MBTI® as the best profiling tool available. It is non-judgmental, by far the best researched and validated instrument and the participant actively chooses his or her 'best fit' type. 

Deena concludes "The flexibility of the MBTI® instrument tool illustrates to me the power it has of connecting to so many different topics and people. Those that have connected to the tool come from diverse backgrounds, ages and experiences."                                                                                         - from NAB Case Study published by CPP Asia. 

Applications of the MBTI® with other models

Posted by Jan Craft - Monday, March 11, 2013

Mar 11

One of the great benefits of using the Myers Briggs Type Indicator® assessment is the consistency with which it can predict human behaviours. This predictability is extremely useful in understanding and managing a wide range of  issues in the workplace such as change, conflict, stress and many others. The power of the MBTI® is particularly evident when used as a complimentary tool with other instruments. Type Theory is further validated when used to help interpret behavioural outcomes in other indicator models.  

Type Theory is predicated on an understanding that an individuals type in innate and does not change in one's lifetime. This is a characteristic it shares with other personality models such as Temperament Type Theory and the Enneagramme. There are many useful models however that are dynamic in nature in that they allow for behavioural shifts based on the response choice an individual makes in a given situation. These personality indicator models include the Thomas Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument ™, Fundamental Inter-Personal Relations Orientation™(FIRO®), David Kolb's Learning Styles and David Kelsey's work on Temperament Theory among many others. CPP Asia Pacific, the licensed provider and distributor of the MBTI® in Australia, has recently produced an informative guide on how an understanding of Type can deliver powerful insights to the facilitation of  The Five Dysfunctions of a Team model. The advantage of this collaboration is a greater richness of personal data that in turn delivers deeper insight into an individuals behaviour. 

The facilitation of a MBTI® workshop is a powerful platform on which to build learning about deep self in terms of function and motivation. It provides a rich body of personal data and enhanced self awareness.  

To develop an awareness of our behavioural style and choices is highly valuable but when used alongside the MBTI® the benefit is increased many fold. To be honest I can think of few learning situations where a case for incorporating the MBTI® is not compelling in terms of added value.

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Posted by Jan Craft - Monday, February 11, 2013

Feb 11

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

The Table Group are quite extraordinary for a number of reasons. They have created business formats for team building based not on theoretical models but on a simple common sense approach, backed up with case studies from life experience. What this has produced is a straightforward learning approach that is accessible to all and does not require great sophistication to deliver success.

Written by Patrick Lencioni in 2002, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team is a business fable with fictional characters and a story-line based on Pat’s life experience working as a corporate executive at Sybase, Oracle and Bain & Co in the U.S. It is simple and engaging to read but for the corporate businessperson the setting and characters will be spine chillingly familiar. All of the dysfunctions of a team are there. For some it is ego, self interest, self promotion, fear of failure, frustration, anger, aggression and disillusionment. The way this fictional situation is resolved becomes the basis of the Five Dysfunctions of a Team model which is powerful primarily in its relative simplicity. This is explained in more detail at the end of the book.

What is inspirational about Pat’s company The Table Group is their incredible belief in their product and its power to be transformational. Having operated in the business world I can see the strength of its propositions for change. Let’s look at just one facet and explore how this one simple change in behaviour could potentially eliminate politics from a team.

The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team model recommends creating team meeting norms, a set of behaviours to which a team must adhere. The purpose of these norms is to eliminate politics, yes you heard right, eliminate. How is this achieved? Just one rule states that there should be no out of meeting meetings. For some individuals their entire corporate patterns of behaviour revolve around lobbying and manipulating issues behind the scenes.  All business matters and topics are discussed only when the team meets together. It requires a strong leader to enforce this rule but once established the team itself will be self governing. No individual in the team should have an opportunity to express themselves other than to all of the team members.  The leader needs to make it clear...”you cannot meet with me, email me, phone me, walk into my office, stop me in the corridor or communicate anything except with all of the team at the table”. This also applies to the rest of the team.  It takes very few instances of a conspiratorial comment being rebuffed for this behaviour to change.

This is a very simple strategy but its power is undeniable.