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A few weeks ago at work I had to take a personality test on “conflict styles.” As soon as they announced it I knew I was going to fail. You might be thinking “Silly, there’s no way to fail a personality test.” If that’s really what you think, then you sound like the kind of person who aces work-mandated personality tests. Congratulations to you!
Perhaps you would like to experience the “fun” of taking the conflict styles test. Here ya go! http://peacebag.org/articles/toolkit-p5-what.html
This is the exact version of the test I took. (I’m not sure what Peace Bag for EuroMed Youth is, but it does not inspire confidence in the test or my job. Did they make me take a test written by European teenagers? Ugh, probably. No offense, Euro teen Fawnlog readers.)
The test revealed that I am a Disgusting Turtle. It actually says Avoiding Turtle, but the subtext is clear– I’m disgusting.
The Avoiding Turtle (WITHDRAWING)
Turtles withdraw into their shells to avoid conflicts. They give up their personal goals and relationships. They stay away from the issues over which the conflict is taking place and from the persons they are in conflict with. Turtles believe it is hopeless to try and resolve conflicts. They feel helpless. They believe it is easier to withdraw (physically and psychologically) from a conflict than to face it.
Turtles adopt an avoiding or withdrawing conflict management style. They would rather hide and ignore conflict than resolve it; this leads them to become uncooperative and unassertive. Turtles tend to give up personal goals and display passive behaviour creating lose-lose situations
That’s really what it says! Verbatim! The only way it could have been worse is if it had pointed out some physical flaws as well. “Avoiding Turtles often have dandruff. They have given up on the idea of having a healthy scalp.”
So I pretty clearly failed this test.
I’m not sure how I did so badly. Generally I’m smart enough to lie on the questions that are obviously designed to weed out psychopaths. Or, you know, your work’s definition of psychopath. (Examples: Have you ever used alcohol as a coping mechanism? Have you ever felt sad for no reason? Do you sometimes feel “disturbed” by your dreams?) I thought I answered everything correctly! My only guess is that somehow my answers reflected my desire to not take the test. I think the test picked up on the fact that I was hoping to avoid taking it in the first place, so it accused me of avoiding everything.
Like everyone (right?) I spend a lot of time at work trying to hide my true personality. I don’t want some test blowing my cover and revealing all my insides. I don’t truly believe the blunt tool of a multiple-choice test has the ability to expose anything about me, but my work must believe it does, so I have to take it seriously. I guess there’s irony here. By trying to avoid revealing anything about myself on the test I’m actually revealing a much truer (and worse) part of myself– my crippling skepticism and mean, arrogant disdain for things I don’t see the point of. Oops! Hoist by my own petard. (I just learned the literal meaning of this expression and I’m excited to use it.)
In essence: The test said I avoid conflict at work. I am terrible. I am ruining this organization with my avoidance. And you know, they’re probably right. I tried as hard as I could to avoid the test, but in the end it seemed like too much of a hassle to get out of it. So I avoided the conflict and just took the test, which revealed I try to avoid things. Amazing!
Does your work make you take personality tests? If so, what’s the worst animal you’ve been compared to?