Saturday July 30, 2016
The MBTI Is a Test (and the Unreliable Part is the Test Taker)
I've been participating (once again) in a Facebook discussion among people who claim that the MBTI is not a "valid" assessment because some people get a different four-letter code the second time they take the inventory. Many people can't bear the idea that the reason for a different result is as simple as the fact that they answered the questions differently. They don't want to investigate why that happened, so they blame "the test".
Saturday July 9, 2016
Temperament is Clear Early in LifeI met a young NT today.
[Continued in commentary...]
Thursday April 21, 2016
MBTI: Debunking the Debunkers (again)I have been having a "discussion" in The Science Enthusiasts group in Facebook. Someone posted another "debunking the MBTI" article (from 2014). Surprisingly, this one doesn't cite "Wharton Scholar, Adam Grant".
The article includes this statement: "Several analyses have shown the test is totally ineffective at predicting people's success in various jobs, and that about half of the people who take it twice get different results each time."
Well, yes. Both of those things are, at least partially, true. Neither, however, is an argument that "debunks" the MBTI.
Read more in commentary...
Saturday July 4, 2015
My Labels, My Choice
I just ran across this question in a LinkedIn group:
Do Typology Instruments Box People Into a Category Using Labeling?
My understanding is that Jung did not mean for his theories to be used as "labels." He meant them to help people grow and develop beyond a way of being. I have often heard people say things like, "I'm an INFP" or something similar. It makes me think people take these letters as a personality label and I am uncomfortable with that rigid interpretation.
Wednesday May 27, 2015
Sour Grapes and the MBTI
The MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) is a self-assessment and self-discovery instrument for Psychological Type. It was developed in the late 1940s and has been in use since the 1960s. To date, millions of people have taken the MBTI.
Notwithstanding its popularity (or perhaps because of it), there are detractors. How much of this is due to the fact that the MBTI was not (gasp!) created by formally-educated psychologists?
Tuesday May 5, 2015
Watching Temperament Play Out Over Coffee Cups
One of my interests is Personality Type and Temperament. I also like Starbucks Frappucinos.
You wouldn't think these two things would intersect, but, recently, I realized that they do. They come together in the form of the precious and controversial Trenta cup.
Sunday April 19, 2015
There's No Such Thing as an Ambivert
The term "ambivert" was popularized by Dan Pink in 2013, in an article on leaders and sales. The word operates in the same colloquial universe of definitions in which introverts are shy and retiring and extroverts (usually spelled with an o) are loud and outgoing.
[Read my commentary...]
Thursday August 29, 2013
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, by Susan Cain, is certainly not the only book about introversion, nor was it the first. Nevertheless, Quiet sparked a discussion that was bigger than anything we'd seen before.
Passionately argued, superbly researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.Continue reading in commentary...
The book that started the Quiet Revolution.
Saturday February 23, 2013
Working From HomeI read this today in the Huffington Post:
Marissa Mayer's Work-From-Home Ban Is The Exact Opposite Of What CEOs Should Be DoingLisa Belkin
Senior Columnist on Life/Work/Family, The Huffington Post
What others see as the future of the workplace, and what parents see as a most important tool for juggling home and work, Marissa Mayer apparently sees as disposable.
Lisa Belkin disagrees with Marissa and so do I.
Read my commentary...
Wednesday February 13, 2013
Social Styles vs MBTI: A Type Epiphany
Many years ago, at least 5 years before I discovered the MBTI, I took a one-day workshop called "Managing Interpersonal Relationships", offered through my day job.
The workshop used one of the "4-Quadrant Personality Models" as a way to explain and improve team communications (aka "interpersonal relationships") in the workplace. In particular, it focused on the Social Styles model developed by David Merrill & Roger Reid. The Social Styles model theorizes that people operate with four distinct ways of interaction, or social styles: Analytical, Amiable, Driving and Expressive.
Continue reading in commentary...
Wednesday December 26, 2012
The MBTI is Nothing Like Astrology
I've been meaning to write this post for a while, but I haven't had the right nudge until now. But today, someone gave me that nudge.
Every now and then, someone blathers about the MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) being no better or worse than Astrology. The articles make for amusing punditry, but they miss an important point.
Continue reading in commentary.
Wednesday August 15, 2012
The War Against Outliers
An article in Forbes suggests that people without Facebook accounts may be viewed with suspicion. This is based, largely, on: a Slashdot story (flagging a German news story), a woman who wrote to an advice column, and anecdotal evidence of job seekers and employers wondering aloud "about what it means if a job candidate doesn't have a Facebook account".
Sunday June 10, 2012
I recently shared this image with friends on Facebook. The image comes via Beth Beulow's Team Introvert Pinterest board.
One friend commented, "Wouldn't 'Team Introvert' be an oxymoron?"
Would it? Read more in commentary...
Sunday June 3, 2012
Never Assume (Trust But Verify)The job description read, in part:
- 5+ years experience working with Windows, Mac and Linux systems, including systems administration for all three
Saturday November 13, 2010
Highly Sensitive People and the Interruptive Workplace
Good News: I have a new manager and increased scope at Dayjob. My job title and description will be adjusted to formally recognize what I've actually been doing for the past three years.
Bad news: New manager wants me in the office "more often". It's the only point on which we disagree. But it's a big point. For some time now, I've been telecommuting three days a week.
Within a month of my starting work at this company (on a temporary "contract"), I asked to telecommute one day a week. When they offered to make the position permanent, I requested permission to telecommute two days a week. That (and a Mac on my desk :-) were my most important negotiating points before saying Yes.
About a year and a half ago, I increased my telecommuting to three days a week. As my commute time and exposure to noise and disruption have gone down, my stress levels have also gone down. The ability to telecommute is one of my top reasons for staying with this company.
Asking me to "be the office more" feels like a punishment for a job well done.
Wednesday August 4, 2010
Is Customer Satisfaction Worth $9.95?Back in early June, I noticed that the front grill emblem on our Scion xB was missing. I decided I wanted to replace it and our local dealership's price seemed high so I checked online. I found a decent price but their web ordering system was out of whack and proposed $35 for shipping (um, no). There was, however, a box I could check to "get a quote" for shipping.
So, I placed the order (using PayPal) and checked the box. The next day, they sent me a quote for shipping. The quote was a bit higher than I would have liked (the item is small enough to fit in a USPS flat-rate envelope) but it was only a $5 difference from what I would have liked, so I sent the shipping by PayPal. Then I waited.
Sunday April 4, 2010
Evolution of a TWikiist
I've had a rather eclectic career. Most of the time, I've been a programmer, starting with Unix (shell, awk, and some C), then moving into Perl. At other times, when the mood suits, I've been employed as a technical writer.
At present, I'm a TWiki adept. Read more in commentary.
Sunday January 10, 2010
Privacy in the Internet Age
I read an article today, in Read Write Web, on Facebook's "privacy changes". The headline screamed "Facebook's Zuckerberg Says The Age of Privacy is Over" .
Well, apparently that's not actually what Zuckerberg said. That was an interpretation for a sensationalist headline.
Read my commentary.
Wednesday October 28, 2009
Step Away from the Problem
A few days ago, I was working on a small application for some people at Work. Part way into the project, I went out briefly on an errand.
Driving down the street, I suddenly realized that I could (and should) make a simple change to the user interface that would result in less risky code as well as a better experience for the users.
Saturday December 6, 2008
What Advice Would You GiveI recently commented on two articles by Tim Walker (Hoover's Business Insight Zone). On Dec. 5, Tim asked What "Real Advice" Would You Give Your Company? and in October he asked What Advice Would You Give to a College Student planning for a career.
Monday September 1, 2008
FeedbackIn today's commentary, I discuss unsolicited feedback: Criticism, praise, and critique. How do you give feedback?
Friday June 20, 2008
Readin', Ritin', and Rithmetic, by RoteYesterday in Twitter, @jemmons wrote
If answers to your test questions can be looked up by "cheaters" on their phones, maybe they don't need to learn them? BETTER QUESTIONS PLZ?
Saturday May 17, 2008
SurpriseIn today's commentary, I consider the meaning of "surprise"
Tuesday April 29, 2008
Job vs Company; I'll Take the Job
When I began working for Cotheme (the Company that employs me), it was with decidedly mixed feelings. I hadn't gone looking for a job there; they found me. I wasn't in their customer demographic. I didn't use any of their products or services. The location was at the far edge of the distance I was wiling to commute.
Saturday January 26, 2008
Leaving a MarkToday's commentary discusses my reaction to an article, and particularly the followup comments, that I read in April of 2006. One of the comments referenced a quote attributed to Jean Baudrillard:
The compact disc. It does not wear out, even when one uses it. That is terrible. As if one had never used it, as if one had never existed at all.
Friday January 4, 2008
Who Owns the Data?
What's interesting to me is that most of the discussion doesn't surround Facebook's policy or whether they were within their rights to turn off Robert's account, even temporarily. Much of the discussion concerns whether Robert Scoble had any right to the data he was "collecting".
In today's commentary, I discuss Robert Scoble, Facebook, and my opinion on data portability rights.
Friday December 28, 2007
Tact FiltersIn today's commentary, I discuss Jeff Bigler's "Tact Filter" theory. I agree with most of it. But, there's one piece I don't agree with...
Thursday December 6, 2007
Re-orgs Hazardous to TeamsToday in commentary, I discuss the deleterious effect of Company reorganizations on teams.
On Monday, my manager said "We're having a re-org. But don't worry. it doesn't affect anyone in my group."
She was partially correct. There is no immediate, direct, acute effect. However, the longterm indirect effects are demoralizing. We're losing three people from the Team.
Read my commentary.
Friday November 2, 2007
Changing the Culture? Start with the Meeting!
The Company That Employs Me has decided it needs to Change. To get the employees to understand and "internalize" the new Purpose, they're holding "Corporate Purpose, Strategy and Culture" meetings. Specifically, mandatory, 3-hour, in-person attendance meetings.
This is not a Company with a history of holding effective meetings. You could say that effective meetings are not part of the Company Culture. It seems to me, then, that a good way to start changing the Company Culture would be to start with that first meeting.
Friday October 12, 2007
Personality TypesI'm interested in the study of Personality Types. In today's commentary, I discuss some of my thoughts about Jung Typology, the Meyers Briggs Type Index (MBTI), and the Keirsey Temperament sorter.
Wednesday September 19, 2007
Hiding Behind the DMCAIn today's commentary, I discuss my recent encounter with the dreaded DMCA. Whatever happened to old-fashioned courtesy?
Friday September 14, 2007
Four Walls and a DoorIn today's commentary, I discuss the productivity losses caused by cubicles vs. the benefits of having "Four Walls and a Door".
Saturday August 11, 2007
Whisper CampaignSometimes, when you switch to a new manager, you take along baggage you didn't know existed... In today's commentary, I discuss an upsetting workplace situation and why I actually feel better about my job now.
Monday July 9, 2007
Who Are You?In today's commentary, I discuss names: nicknames, handles, aliases, and, in particular, Chat IDs.
Wednesday June 27, 2007
Who Moved My Cheese?In today's commentary, I discuss Who Moved My Cheese, the popular motivational tale by Spencer Johnson.
Wednesday May 16, 2007
Empowered TeamsIn today's commentary, I discuss Empowered Teams. Companies fear empowered teams. Employee empowerment represents the end of management as we have known it. That cannot happen too soon for me.
Friday May 11, 2007
Do You Pass the Joel Test?In today's commentary, I discuss "The Joel Test", Joel Spolsky's 12 step test to rate the quality of a software team.
Wednesday April 11, 2007
Commute Time ManagementIn today's commentary, I discuss my view of time management in the context of the daily commute.
Thursday March 29, 2007
Business CommunicationIn today's commentary, I discuss why I believe that formal communication and discussion between people in the workplace should always be handled by email
Thursday March 22, 2007
Choosing EmailIn today's commentary, I discuss why we need to stop thinking of email as some strange beast. Email is written communication - nothing more, nothing less.
Thursday March 1, 2007
Vital IntegritiesIn today's commentary, I discuss the book, Vital Integrities, by George Brymer, drawing comparisons to my job history.
Wednesday February 14, 2007
State of MindIn today's commentary, I discuss the consequences of feeling good about my work and my job — and what can happen if that changes.
Wednesday February 7, 2007
Don't ask employees to be passionate about the company!One of my favorite weblogs is called Creating Passionate Users. In today's commentary, I discuss Kathy Sierra's recent article, on a subject that I can really get behind.
Tuesday September 26, 2006
Balancing TimeIn today's commentary, I discuss a secret that good managers know (and mediocre managers may never understand):
Increased productivity does not mean increased time. In fact, the reverse is true. Productivity is defined by work over time. To be more productive, you do more work in the same amount (or a smaller amount!) of time.
Thursday August 17, 2006
Cutting Back on TelecommutingIn today's commentary, I discuss HP's decision to cut back telecommuting in its IT division. Boo! Hissssss.
Monday August 14, 2006
Where Do You Prefer to Work?In today's commentary, I discuss telecommuting and the results of the recent National Technology Readiness Survey.
Thursday August 10, 2006
Frame of ReferenceIn today's commentary, I discuss the importance of the proper frame of reference in understanding what you're seeing, or reading, or hearing.
Sunday August 6, 2006
Are you a blogger?Before you answer no, consider this:... In today's commentary, I discuss what defines a blogger. If you share writing, stories, and observations with your friends, even by email, you may be a blogger and not realize it!
Friday June 9, 2006
Touchy Feely PaperworkIn today's commentary, I discuss the not-so-hidden costs of feeling a need to meet "face to face".
Thursday June 8, 2006
After The InterviewIn today's commentary: Interviews can cause enough stress while they are in progress. But when I get the polite "no thank you", my stress meter can go off the scale. My first thought is: Did I do something wrong? My second thought is usually "What did I do wrong?!"
Tuesday May 30, 2006
Never SettleIn today's commentary: Don't let the difficulty in finding a job drive you to accept a job that's wrong for you.
Tuesday May 16, 2006
Every Jot and TittleIn today's commentary, I discuss one of my "pet peeves" — people who seem to feel that writing for the web doesn't need to be edited, spell-checked or proofread.
Tuesday May 9, 2006
Strengths FinderIn today's commentary, I bring you part two in a two-part discussion of the Clifton StrengthsFinder and the book, Now, Discover Your Strengths.
Friday May 5, 2006
Discover Your Strengths
"Most Americans do not know what their strengths are. When you ask them, they look at you with a blank stare, or they respond in terms of subject knowledge, which is the wrong answer."In today's commentary, I discuss the book, Now, Discover Your Strengths, by Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton of the Gallup organization.
Thursday April 27, 2006
By Chance or By Choice?In today's commentary, I discuss a question from career hub: "Do you think one's career is by chance, or by choice?"
Tuesday April 25, 2006
Just in Time for Earth DayIn today's commentary, I discuss a relatively new California regulation that prohibits the disposal of household hazardous waste in the trash. That's the good news.
Friday April 21, 2006
Net CommunityIn today's commentary, I discuss the latest "net scandal" (at digg) and why it puts the social software and the Net Community in a favorable light.
Wednesday April 19, 2006
Addicted to the Computer?In today's commentary, I discuss a topic for a possible article in the the SF Chronicle and my reaction to the topic. I had a nice chat with the reporter.
Sunday April 16, 2006
Needs Direction?In today's commentary, I discuss my reaction to the unexpected results of my request for "After the Interview" feedback.
Saturday April 15, 2006
Following Up After the InterviewIn today's commentary, I discuss asking for feedback. following an (unsuccessful) job interview.
Wednesday April 12, 2006
The Indie "Virus"In today's commentary, I discuss the "Indie Virus", a good idea with a terrible name. It's not what you're thinking...
Sunday April 2, 2006
Can You Pass the "Human" Test?In today's commentary, I discuss CAPTCHAs, those weird twisted letters that some sites use to try to prove you're a human.
Friday March 24, 2006
Continuous Partial AtttentionIn today's commentary, I discuss the problems of the "always on, always accessible" society.
Tuesday March 21, 2006
The Math You LearnedIn today's commentary, I discuss Steve Yegge's recent essay, Math For Programmers, and my thoughts on high school mathematics and its effect on what I do in my job.
Friday March 17, 2006
Knowledge SharingIn today's commentary I discuss the ways in which the World Wide Web provides us with a vast and ever-growing library where each of us can check things in as well as check things out!
Wednesday March 15, 2006
Sustained Individual SuccessIn today's commentary I discuss some of my thoughts after reading part III of Marcus Buckingham's book, The One Thing You Need to Know.
Friday March 10, 2006
Realtime Productivity Reduction
Welcome to CubevilleIn today's commentary I discuss two articles on office cubicles as well as my own feelings on the subject after working in Cubeville for two decades.
Tuesday March 7, 2006
Has Your Manager Read This Book?In today's commentary I discuss part I of The One Thing You Need to Know, by Marcus Buckingham. I've begun to understand why so many tech-industry managers are... mediocre at best.
Wednesday March 1, 2006
Unclear on the ConceptIn today's commentary, I discuss the weird and often unfair world of "billable hours" as exemplified by a recent posting to ComputerWorld's Shark Tank.
Tuesday February 21, 2006
The Weblog Handbook
Practical Advice on Creating and Maintaining Your Blog
Saturday February 18, 2006
Serendipity, Pet Rocks, and The Long Tail
A lot of people want to Get Rich Quick. I don't blame them. In today's commentary, I discuss how a lot of "get rich quick" success stories seem to involve a large element of serendipity.
Wednesday February 15, 2006
Software Development is Not Like Auto MechanicsIn today's commentary, I discuss a recent article in The Register that compares professionalism in programmers to profesionalism in auto mechanics.
Sunday February 12, 2006
Note to FedExWhile we were out of the house today, a FedEx driver delivered a package. In today's commentary, I discuss my reaction to the way he did it.
Friday February 10, 2006
Customer DisserviceIn today's commentary, I discuss why it can be so difficult to file problem reports when Customer Service organizations claim to want to help me.
Thursday February 9, 2006
Commuting To and FroIn today's commentary I discuss the problems inherent in a regular, lengthy, commute.
Tuesday February 7, 2006
Stepford EmployeesIn today's commentary I discuss a article posted today at CNNMoney.com, "Federal regulations kick in today that will make Internet job hunting more complicated."
More complicated? It's a lot worse than "more complicated".
Thursday February 2, 2006
Internet TiesIn today's commentary, I discuss my interest in social networking applications and social software.
Wednesday February 1, 2006
Make Me An OfferIn today's commentary I discuss the fact that, whenever I'm forced, unwillingly, into putting a price on my work, I wonder how best to respond.
Thursday January 26, 2006
The Citizen Journalism DebateIn today's commentary, I discuss the recent announcement, by the National Union of Journalists in Britain and Ireland, of a "code of practice to address important issues raised by the 'phenomenon of citizen journalism'.
Thursday January 19, 2006
The Interactive WebIn today's commentary, I duscuss my interest in interactive web appliations, so-called "Web 2.0".
Tuesday January 3, 2006
The Color of My Parachute
In today's comentary, I discuss my current job hunt as well as what I like to do, the sorts of jobs I like, the kind of career I want to have, and the sort of company where I would like to work if I had my druthers.
Wednesday December 21, 2005
Seasons' GreetingsToday marks the winter solstice — the longest night (and the shortest day) of the year. For thousands of years, humans have observed this season with festival, celebrating the end of one year and the beginning of the next. At the winter solstice, humans celebrate the return of the sun.
Thursday November 17, 2005
How to Lose Friends and Influence PeopleToday in commentary: I learned a few days ago that the Company That Formerly Employed Me has now laid off some 10 - 20% of its workforce. I guess I was the "canary in the mine". I still feel bad... but less paranoid.
Monday November 7, 2005
What Part of "I prefer..." Don't You Understand?
In today's commentary, I discuss a comment, made recently by a friend, that my skills and work preferences "limit the options" in my current job hunt...
Friday October 21, 2005
Passion For Work (redux)
In today's commentary I discuss how passion for work can backfire...
Wednesday October 19, 2005
So Good At What I Do
Many years ago, in my first "real" (i.e. fulltime, salaried) job, my then-manager said to me:
Vicki, you're so good at what you do. Why can't you be good at this?Today in commentary.
Thursday September 29, 2005
Teaching Tomorrow's Employees Today
In today's commentary, I discuss IBM's plan to "financially back employees who want to leave the company to become math and science teachers."
Monday September 26, 2005
Tech Support Motivations
In today's commentary, I discuss how Rich and I frequently get into "discussions" with people who provide technical support for the various applications we run... The cause of the "discussions" is a fundamental difference in motivation.
Saturday September 10, 2005
We Are The Web
Ten years ago, Netscape went public, bringing the WWW to the attention of Wall Street and the masses. The masses took the Web as their own.
Kevin Kelly published an excellent article on the Web phenomenon of the decade in the August issue of Wired magazine.
My own comments, on both the Wired article and my own experience, are posted today in commentary.
Saturday May 1, 2004
Getting Out of the Box
Career Epiphany[ This is an abstract of a longer commentary which I posted to my other weblog. ]
Before you can do any thinking "outside the box" you need to realize that there is a box and that you've placed yourself within it. For years, I have been struggling with the question of "what do I want to do with my job". At least a decade ago, I made a set of Pro and Con lists, variously entitlted, Programmer, System Administrator, Tech Support, Quality Lead.
In the years that followed, I added Technical Writer and Webmaster to the lists. I added a list of generic Preferences and another for Interest Areas. But I was still thinking inside my box.
Continue reading "Getting Out of the Box"