Kevin is a marketing director in the Midwest. He’s at a turning point in his career and wants to know which way to go? Is he meant to be part of a small agency startup or does he need the stability and assurances that a large company offers him?
Kevin took the Vitru assessment to learn where his impending job search would lead him and whether the position he was leaning toward would be a good fit for his personality traits and work values. A self-described “assessment junkie”, Kevin was surprised by his results, and not for the reasons you may think…
Kevin: When you have been in the workforce for several years with a couple of larger companies, chances are you have taken some sort of personal assessment. In college I used Myers-Briggs (MBTI) and Gallup’s StrengthsFinder, during my time as an automotive manager I was trained in Management by Strengths (MBS). Assessments are kind of interesting to me and I expected to see some similar things. I wasn’t expecting to be surprised. And…I wasn’t.
V: So you figured there was nothing new you could learn about your personality from the Vitru Assessment?
Kevin: I will admit that after 10+ years of taking assessments, there is probably nothing that I don’t already know about myself. What is interesting is learning how to better communicate with those who I sit next to. The Vitru assessment takes into consideration personality trait and work values, which gives you multiple ways to understand more about your team.
V: Ah, so the surprise was in the work values piece of the assessment and in your Vitru Compare results! What shocked you most about what you saw in how you work with others? Whose profile did you check out most intently?
Kevin: My favorite part of work assessments has always been to look at how I relate to my immediate boss. This is not only fun, but is extremely beneficial in developing a happier work environment and more effective communication. Hoping to work on the few differences between the boss, and myself I found that we are almost complete opposites! Most would consider this an absolute nightmare, and start looking for a box to pack their personal belongings. Part of me wondered if the fact that my immediate boss is the CEO made it even more crucial that we were opposites. While I was happy at work, I started to worry that I was on the wrong team.
V: Whoa, that’s quite a revelation. Did you mention it to the boss? Did you find any common ground at all?
Kevin: At first glance the boss and I have very different work values, but we do come close when it comes to Support and Quality. Valuing support means that we both prefer organizations that invest in their employees to provide resources and an environment where professional goals and personal growth are a high priority. This is no surprise as I was brought up from the lowest level in my previous organization, and the Boss is an entrepreneur who knows support is needed to grow a start-up. Quality is a bit more self-explanatory, and it is proven true with everyday work being held to the highest standards. Even when I personally don’t meet those standards on the first try, it is a value that is much appreciated and understood.
V: Is it possible to build a work relationship on just one or two shared traits?
Kevin: With Vitru having 15 work values it is a bit harder to pick which differences to focus on, but I will stick to the largest imbalance. Creativity is a work value that has never been very high for me throughout my life, even though I would consider myself creative. As you can guess the boss is highly creative being the CEO of a marketing agency. The difference in creativity is not really a detriment to either of us, as she is in charge of creativity for our company. It is no surprise to anyone who has ever met me, that Structure is a work and life value for me, although both being military brats it is a surprise that the boss and I don’t share this work value. As I continued to look through the list and compare myself to others on the team, I realized that I did look markedly different than those who seemed really engaged and successful at my firm. I began to question my role there and if one or two traits were enough common ground to build a career upon.
V: Well, don’t keep us in suspense! What happened after you analyzed your profile in-depth? Did you decide to stick it out and stick around or search for a different place to belong?
Kevin: Well, at a glance it is easy to see the differences in works values, but if you flip the switch in Vitru you will see the comparison of our personalities. When it comes to originality the boss and I are shapers and trailblazers who forge new paths and like to experience new and alluring activities. Our Need for Stability is identical in the responsive part of the scale, meaning we are often low-key, confident, and steady under normal circumstances. When it comes to Agreeableness we are both challengers who apply skepticism toward the establishment while also being extremely guarded and deliberate in discussing personal beliefs. You might assume two challengers wouldn’t get along, but I think it is a universally respected trait regardless. Our differences lie in Sociability and Focus, which I believe provides a good work dynamic. As the boss, she is an extrovert who is agile when it comes to focus, which allows for being a leader and adjusting to all circumstances. On the other hand I am a natural introvert who is a driver of focus. My words don’t get in the way and I tend to stay on task, just like the boss would want from an employee. In the end, I realized I had enough to bring to the team to stick around and create an incredibly diverse team.
The Vitru assessment has several options to help you understand more about yourself, and how you can relate with your coworkers. With any assessment, it is less about the questions and more about what you do with the answers.