Understanding Why Rembrandt Portrait is the Best Assessment for Predicting Success on the Job

To help demystify employee testing I thought it may be helpful to review the different types of assessments that have made their way to the Talent Acquisition process and help you to understand where and how to apply these assessments.

There are basically 6 types of assessments:

Cognitive - These measure general intelligence and the way in which the person learns best and solves problems. The Rembrandt Portrait incorporates cognitive questions into its assessment because measuring a candidate's ability to learn and solve problems is one of the most accurate ways of predicting success on the job. According to research cognitive ability is twice as predictive as interviews, 3 times as predictive as work experience, and 4 times more predictive than education.

Integrity Testing - These are usually administered to candidates applying for entry level positions where adherence to rules is critical and to weed out theft. Personally, I shy away from these because of their high false positive rates.

Skills Testing - These are the most straightforward of assessments because they assess what you know and not who you are. They are pretty easy to put together and they give you a direct understanding of the candidate's knowledge. For example, The Sales Index measures what a sales candidate knows of the selling process, from qualifying a lead or understanding when to close. It does not measure potential, but does provide a solid understanding of what the candidate knows about selling. This can be highly valuable in designing a training program to teach the new person the mechanics of selling.

Physical Ability Testing - Like Skills Testing, these assessments are straightforward. Are you able to lift 50 pounds and carry it 10 feet? If you need to know if someone is physically able to do the job these assessments play a vital role.

Behavioral Assessment / Type Indicator Testing - These assessments typically group people into quadrants or 16 grids, such as the Myers Briggs, DISC, and Predictive Index. These assessments have great utility in team building and training, as they are quick, cheap and provide an understanding of the person's preferred Style of interaction. Neat information to have to roll out an effective workshop on communications and work style, but these assessments have not been validated for Talent Selection. They do not measure Ability, simply Style and it's the person's Ability that is predictive of job success not Style. Many of these assessments note that the person should retake the test every 6 months or annually because style or behavior can change. Behavior can and does change depending on the environment, and it can be minute to minute, not year to year. If you go to MBTI or DISC's website they tell you their assessment was not validated for selection. Companies using a 4 quadrant assessment for selection are doing themselves and the candidate disservice and are potentially breaking the law by utilizing a non-valid tool in the selection process.

Personality Testing - The most effective test is a true psychometric assessment that measures a person's personality, showing their drives, preferences, and tendencies. While style and behavior can and do change, personality (with limited exception) is the only true constant in understanding a candidate or employee. The most stable and predictive competencies remain consistent over time and are relevant to most positions. They are: Communication, Relationship Building, Problem Solving, Work Management, and Work Style. The Rembrandt Portrait measures these 5 competencies through 13 key attributes and our cognitive assessment.

In conclusion, the Rembrandt Portrait is based on the most stable of reliable science known and incorporates a cognitive assessment, making it one of the most valid and predictive assessments on the market.

Michael Santo Ph.D. | Founder / CEO

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Are you successful but yearning for more? Are you considering leaving your current position? Here is the story of a man's personal journey to finding the right position by using what he learned from his RembrandtAdvantage Portrait and how he's using it to his advantage (Part 3)

For those of you following, it's time to check in for results!

I'm happy to report that after a few months of leveraging the insights gleaned from my Rembrandt Portrait, I'm beginning to see improved outcomes. As a recap, my plan began with simply paying more attention to activities that I engage in to determine how I was feeling during those activities and then to reflect on what it was about those activities that made me feel energized or "in the flow" as well as those activities that drained me. Next, for those activities or approaches that were aligned with my personality, I experimented with doing similar but new activities to discover additional areas of alignment. Finally, I attempted to find ways of doing those activities that were less aligned in a more aligned fashion. My lessons learned are as follows:

    - I am most aligned and successful in assignments that require a creative, unconventional approach. This insight has solidified my decision to stick with consulting versus operations; however, turn-around / interim operational leadership roles would align quite nicely. I am also pursuing education that will enable me to "create" by means of additional service lines.
    - Applying these insights to my personal life has a complementary effect on my professional life. In short, applying these principles to my non-work activities brought about a positivity that led to increased satisfaction and success at work. For example, I find myself generally more relaxed and more "myself" and this authenticity is felt by others and with it comes increased trust and reciprocity.
    - By looking at all activities, not just those with negative outcomes, I've greatly increased my data points for decision making. For example, even if I had a good outcome, I still consider if it was the result of alignment, other reasons beyond my control, or simply luck. If I had a bad outcome, I do the same thing. This has helped reduce confusion about where I truly excel and am happy.
    - Knowing that in the big scheme of things that I am on the right track has improved my ability to reframe those necessary but less enjoyable tasks as still aligned to the greater goal and with it more energy to do them well.
    - Likewise, I have been more pro-active with framing engagements in general. There are many ways to achieve a goal. By framing my approach early on, it gives others (who all have their unique way of approaching things) a shared set of "leading indicators of success" which not only allows for the most successful outcome possible by enabling me to perform at my best but it also increases everyone's comfort level and patience until the outcome is achieved.

In summary, the Rembrandt Portrait has had a tremendous and synergistic impact in both my personal and professional life by allowing me to more intelligently reflect on those activities/jobs/careers that I've experienced or could choose to experience. As a result, I've been able to identify a more focused path that is reducing variability with and increasing success in my current role and is helping to shape a path for the future.

Are you successful but yearning for more? Are you considering leaving your current position? Here is the story of a man's personal journey to finding the right position by using what he learned from his RembrandtAdvantage Portrait and how he's using it to his advantage (Part 2)

I've been putting my plan (as mentioned in Part 1) into action the last couple months and it has been a success but there is more work to be done. To recap, I've been doing more of what I am aligned to and less of what I am not aligned to. I've also begun to expand my experience by doing things similar but new to those know activities that my personality is naturally aligned with and that I enjoy. This alignment is identified by the Rembrandt Portrait but the nuances are understood through action as there are many ways of putting into practice confidence, decisiveness, assertiveness, a motivation to nurture and influence, etc. This is the part that takes time as one can only experience so many new things in a day; however, I started with what is in front of me.

One non-career related example includes the purchase of a home. My new approach was a bit strange to me at first but it has been very beneficial. Rather than start with an analytical approach (e.g. narrowing my search with a specific lot size, square footage, rooms), instead I took a step back and thought about how I wanted to "feel" in this new location. In other words, what kind of place would align with my personality (e.g. sociability, energy, innovation, responsibility, etc.)? Working with a realtor this quickly produced a few "spot on" options to which I then applied a more analytical approach to confirm the value and that my core needs were met. In the end, I quickly found a terrific place that I'm confident may not have made the cut had I started with a focus on external "best practices" rather than "best practices" that are true to me and my personality.

Regarding my career, I've found ways to leverage my personality for maximum alignment to my current assignment. While I recognize that all aspects of a job must be done, different aspects do produce different value. After comparing those areas against my personality and strengths, I've been able to view the engagement in an especially rewarding way which fuels my energy level and I've also been sure to advertise and frame those commonalities for the benefit of all concerned. As an example, rather than emphasize the completion of tasks, I choose to emphasize the anticipation and, in turn, mitigation of future or long-term serious risks. This is not only of value to executives but it also offers me a chance to more fully leverage my reasoning, listening and assertiveness strengths. As another example, I've actively employed my more innovative side by challenging the "sacred cows" of a methodology which resulted in a more tailored and suitable approach as well as a decrease in the project's time to completion.

Going forward, I plan to continue this approach of paying attention to how different activities make me feel (e.g. energized, not energized). I will seek to do more of the energizing type activities as well as seek out similar but new activities to challenge myself. For those less energizing activities, I will attempt to find and emphasize those areas of value that are best aligned with my personality and skills. As I look toward the second half of my life, I will also leverage the insight the Rembrandt Portrait has provided me along with the knowledge I glean through its application to perhaps even create new opportunities for myself and my employer that take fullest advantage of and can reap the most benefit from my personality and skills.

Are you successful but yearning for more? Are you considering leaving your current position? Here is the story of a man's personal journey to finding the right position by using what he learned from his RembrandtAdvantage Portrait (Part 1):

I began to think I was simply lacking some unknown and mysterious skill or trait.

I’ve always been “successful” but sometimes not to the level I knew I was capable of. In these cases, I seemed to repeatedly reach a level of success in either my personal or professional life but then things would eventually go astray for different reasons regardless of approach or tactics. I began to consider I was missing some fundamental skill or ability but finding that common denominator affecting the various areas of my life was difficult.

This past year I had the opportunity to partner with RembrandtAdvantage and take their personality assessment, the Rembrandt Portrait. My firm uses the Rembrandt to coach and counsel client employees, advising them of their strengths, limitations and motivations as a way of growing and developing their skills. I participated in these conversations to help these employees understand the truth about who they are, what drives them and to find ways of aligning and applying their unique set of traits to their current work role. Having seen the positive impact it had on others, I decided to leverage my own results as a starting point for discovery this “missing link” holding me back from peak performance.

I began by reviewing my traits and how I was applying them in different situations. As expected, I found I was indeed leveraging and applying them as best as possible. I was back at square one. So, I decided to take a step back. If the issue wasn’t my capability for any given situation, I decided to take a systems approach and consider my environment, my relationships, my health, etc. The first step was to recall times in my life when I most felt like “me”. These are times where one feels most alive, energetic, and things just seem to work out. Upon reflection of these times, it was clear that I had put myself in a position for success by following my “gut” which naturally put me in an environment aligned to my personality. I then took the time to identify which traits were leveraged and to what degree to add some definition and consistency to my “gut feelings”. This exercise also helped me understand how my traits as identified by Rembrandt “felt” for me and how they tended to apply. For example, one may be inclined for creative efforts but creative how? While you won’t find me painting or composing a song, I do excel at and enjoy (creatively) finding elegant and novel solutions to complex problems.

I then peeled back the onion for those situations where I didn’t shine as brightly. What I found was that I had made a decision not aligned with my “gut”. I discovered I had in some cases chosen a job based on money or stayed in an unfulfilling relationship for the sake of the other person. In short, I wasn’t being “me” but I was doing what I thought was the “right thing to do” largely based on my working-class, German-influenced, old-school upbringing. In either case, they were not aligned with who I was and, as a result, I was generally unhappy. Then, because I was unhappy, I sometimes took unnecessary risks (seeking some excitement and alignment) or sacrificed too much / tried too hard (due to this general malaise affecting my self-esteem). In short, it wasn’t a problem of skill or ability. It was an overarching problem of misalignment to an environment.

As next steps, I plan to be more cognizant of how I am feeling when doing things. I will do more of those things that are aligned and less of those things not aligned. For example, I enjoy a particular workout routine. I sometimes try a different routine because science says it is better but because I don’t enjoy it as much I seem to miss the gym more frequently. I will stop doing that. I also like walking more than running. When walking I can relax, think and listen to an audiobook. Running doesn’t offer the same benefits for me but I sometimes think I should run. But, again, I find I just happen to not have the time to do it when I switch from what I enjoy and are aligned with to something that the news or society says is “better”. I do plan to make an effort to try related or similar activities to those that energize me and pay attention to see if it offers any additional or complementary alignment with my personality so I may be the fullest “me” that I can be.

As final thoughts, for those with a strong drive to serve others, the exercise I describe above may be particularly useful in forcing the application of one’s knowledge of their unique set of gifts for their own sake and not just at the more tactical level for another. By doing so, it may help one serve even better and longer – driven by a higher energy level from a greater degree of alignment.

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