Psychometric (personality) tests to screen out and screen in prospective hires

Some tests, such as the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) screen out unwanted candidates, such as those who indicate a proclivity toward substance abuse or psychopathology, according to Business Week, April 14, 2006 at 89. Other tests screen in desirable candidates, as does the California Psychological Inventory.

Some tests gauge dependability, stress management and motivation (See my post of June 28, 2005 on Gallup’s test of engagement.). The five main personality traits assessed by such instruments are extroversion, agreeableness, emotional stability, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. (For more on psychometric instruments, see my posts of April 18, 2005, Aug. 21, 2005 and Oct. 21, 2005 on the MBTI; April 9, 2005 on Hartman-Kinsel; Feb. 7, 2006 on the Group Development Questionnaire; Feb. 7, 2006 on values assessments; and Jan. 1, 2006 on building on personal strengths.). The article claims that 30 percent of employers use a version of personality tests for hiring, so many law departments must be able to draw on them if they want.

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