Myers Briggs Personality Tests Versus Emotional Intelligence Tests

Myers Briggs Personality Tests Versus Emotional Intelligence Tests …

The Myers Briggs personality tests and the Enneagram are very powerful psychological  systems both approaching behaviour from different perspectives.  Neither is wrong and once you have grasped the difference in approach you will see how The Enneagram and Myers Briggs can be used to compliment each other or selected individually depending upon the specific application.

There are many articles comparing these systems from a historical and theoretical sense. I will not go into the history of the The Enneagram or Myers Briggs as from a practical  sense its suffice to say both systems provide a very powerful tools to help understand human behaviour.

The key difference in approach can be summed up by the following questions: –

The Enneagram view of behaviour: – “Why do you behave in a certain way?”

The Myers Briggs view of behaviour: – “How do you behave?”

It is this difference in the “how” and the “why” that is the key to understanding the practical application of these systems.  If you are concerned about the “how”, Myers Briggs will be easiest for you to relate to whereas if it’s the “why” then it will be The Enneagram.  In a corporate environment an employee would be more interested in “why” whereas the employer would be more concerns about “how”.  Both view points are correct, its the desired outcome that is most important.

myers briggs personality tests versusemotional intelligence tests

Another way of looking at the enneagram and Myers briggs personality tests is….

The Enneagram focuses on the unconscious, motivating forces looking at attitudes and behaviour across three levels of intelligence, head, heart and gut.  From these arise the nine different patterns of thinking, feeling, and acting called the Enneagram types which can be thought of as the basic functions of the Enneagram.  For each of the three centres of intelligence the Enneagram assigns three types. The Enneagram looks at how we adapt to the world and the needs that motivate our behaviour, encouraging tolerance and self acceptance in order to expand limited view points and enabling breakthroughs in psychological blocks.

Myers Briggs focuses on the conscious and cognitive areas starting with an assumption that there are four sets of choices.  Instead of nine types of thinking, feeling and acting in The Enneagram we have 16 types of brain function preferences people prefer to use.  By learning about preferred brain functions it highlights less preferred brain functions which if developed would lead to a more balanced person.

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Look at it this way…… Myers Briggs wants you to learn about your brain functions so you can learn to use less preferred brain functions to rebalance yourself where as The Enneagram wants you to understand your attitude and behaviour for you to expand on these and break through limiting barriers.

In practice The Enneagram has usually been viewed as a personal development system for Emotional Intelligence whilst Myers Briggs Personality tests have been extensively taken up within the corporate field in the psychometric testing field.

A number of practitioners have created some comparison tables mapping between the different Enneagram types and the Myers Briggs types.  Due to the different approaches the comparison of the types between the two approaches tend to be of limited use. As such it is far more effective to use both methods or select the most appropriate method based on the desired outcome.

That is until now.  Increasingly people are looking at the Enneagram perhaps because it is newer than Myers Briggs, or they have gotten as far as they can with the Myers Briggs Personality Tests.

Emotional Intelligence is also getting a lot of press coverage at the moment.  Gordon Brown was described by Tony Blair as lacking Emotional Intelligence whilst Jose Mourinho described Fabio Capello as not have the ability to relate to his players.

Emotional Intelligence is also gaining exposure in the corporate field with a number of case studies highlighting how Emotional Intelligence coaching is producing significant results.  The most recent of which was Toyota, who used The Enneagram within their management team to significantly increase productivity.

The Enneagram Emotional Intelligence Test in the Workplace

To find out how The Enneagram can be used in your workplace to build the ultimate business team, download our free report now…

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