Assessments for Discovering the Archetypes Active In Your Life and Work

The 12 archetype model forms the basis for the Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator, which measures archetypes in individuals, and the IBM® Kenexa® Organizational Cultural Insight Survey (IBM-KCIS), which measures them in organizational cultures. Getting reliable data on one’s active archetypes can help you recognize the stories you are unconsciously living and make them conscious.

Your PMAI® results can enable you to make choices that fulfill you as you begin to see your motivations more clearly. Deeper than that, with this information, you can recognize that your archetypes serve as lenses through which you observe the world, which can tip you off to what you are not seeing because it gets filtered out. This, in turn, can improve your relationships as you gain a readily accessible way to notice what archetypes are active in others and thus understand why they think differently than you do. Your results also can inform you about your low scoring archetypes, which can help you comprehend why you may have trouble getting motivated to accomplish certain tasks or have a difficult time dealing with certain people, when the work or the interaction with them requires an archetype that does not come naturally to you.

It generally is agreed that an organization’s culture is a key determinant of whether it is successful or not. However, culture usually is invisible to leaders and employees alike. The IBM-KCIS® decodes cultures, and this information allows the culture’s real values to be identified. Understanding which archetypes generate energy within a group then can be used in branding and marketing, leadership and organizational development, and employee recruitment and retention to support outcomes that are good for the organization and its stakeholders and customers.

Why Are Validated Instruments Important?

Other surveys claim to help you think through what archetypes are active in your life and work, but often these are just made up by someone and not validated. I’ve found that it actually is more challenging than you might think to select survey items that work reliably to correlate with archetypes active in diverse groups of people and to be certain that when someone takes the survey at one time and then again somewhat later, they get the same results.

There is great value in utilizing instruments that have been thoroughly studied and tested. Surveys that are put together quickly have their uses, but for accurate results, I recommend taking well-tested instruments. Both the PMAI® instrument and the IBM-KCIS® have been developed, tested, and refined by the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT).

The following paragraphs were adapted from the Oxford Psychologist Press’s website by CAPT and used here with their permission.

What is a psychometric test?

A psychometric test is a series of written or practical tests that assess a clearly defined sample of human behavior or characteristics. There are many different types of psychometric tests, including measures of ability, intelligence, personality, motivation and interests. Such tests can give objective evidence of the human attributes they measure, and can help provide a framework and shortcut to determining the possible presence of the characteristics of interest. In practice, such tests are generally used in conjunction with other methods, such as interviews, to give the ‘whole picture’ of a person.

How can you know one is sound?

Objectivethe results obtained are not influenced by the administrator’s personal characteristics or irrelevant factors such as the color of a test-taker’s socks.

Standardizedthe test is administered and scored according to standard procedures, and people’s scores are compared to known standards.

Reliablethe test measures in a consistent way. The potential error is small and is quantifiable.

Validthe test measures the characteristics which it sets out to measure. A test of verbal ability should predict this area and not some other skill.

Discriminating/discerningthe test should show clear differences between individuals on the behavior being tested.

What is the Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator?

From the CAPT website, included with permission:

The PMAI® (Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator®) is the world’s first scientifically validated archetype assessment tool, and it opens a window into the patterns of our unconscious stories and provides a path to self-understanding. Once we are aware of the archetypes that are active in our lives, we can decide how and when to use them, and which ones may need nurturing or further development.

Taking a psychometrically sound instrument that points to possible archetype activity provides a framework, method, and valuable objective information about the possible roles of archetype-related characteristics in an individual’s life. In conjunction with self-reflection, other information, and—if desired—professional consultation, PMAI® results can give insight into what archetypes may be active, in the shadows, awaiting expression, idealized, and/or in line with or in contrast to the archetypes in one’s milieu. 

The PMAI® Manual explains that the PMAI® instrument can be used to assess people’s values and motivations and the narratives they are living. This information can be useful in such fields as human development, leadership development, marketing, psychology, coaching, career counseling, and diversity training.

To learn more about taking the Pearson-Marr Archetype Indicator®, visit CAPT.

When you purchase an administration, you will receive an email detailing the process for taking the PMAI® online, and when you complete the instrument, you will receive—via email—a report and an electronic version of Introduction to Archetypes to help you make the best use of your results.

What Is the IBM® Kenexa® Organizational Cultural Insight Survey?

The IBM-KCIS® was developed by the CAPT psychometric team in collaboration with me as its author, but is now the property of IBM. For more information about this survey, go to IBM Employment Branding, fill out the form, and ask your questions. Kenexa works exclusively with large, often global, companies.

As the author of this survey, I retained rights to use it with my clients, so if you would like to assess a smaller organization, you are welcome to contact me. Others who have been trained to use it also have such access. Either way, there is a charge for the application and interpretation of the data.