help an old fellow
January 5, 2013 2:22 AM   Subscribe

Psych test advice ? After pretty extensive interview.90 mins + Now through to the next round. Any advice for a 54 y/o who really is struggling since being made redundant.I need to be a team player presumably.Honesty may not be the best policy for a cranky old bastard.
posted by johnny7 to Work & Money (7 answers total)
It's hard to know what you are asking without some more info. Are you having a second interview for a job? And/or is it a psychiatric evaluation? For a job? I've never heard of that before.
posted by dawkins_7 at 5:30 AM on January 5, 2013

I presume you're talking about some kind of psychological test, but what kind? Have you been made redundant at your job? Because you weren't a team player? Or are you applying for new jobs?

Either way, I would caution against trying to skew the results of a psychological test. Most of them have scales built in that specifically assess whether a person is lying or trying to respond in a certain way. More information from you would be helpful, though.
posted by whalebreath at 5:32 AM on January 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

These things aren't made for employment purposes but some places use them anyway--I've gotten stuck doing it before, a questionnaire that was fairly clearly intended to get signs for stuff like *schizophrenia*, not employment suitability, I kind of wondered where they even got it. But yeah, this happens.

That said, I've never been ruled out by one and I have actual mental health problems. Try to skew just a bit towards the answer you would use if you were a slightly nicer, more polite version of yourself. I presume, cranky old bastard or not, that you wouldn't steal, lie to your boss, etc. If they require someone so team-player that even a slightly nicer version of you can't pass the test, the job won't work out for you anyway.
posted by gracedissolved at 5:51 AM on January 5, 2013 [2 favorites]

Or are you being asked to take a Myers-Briggs style assessment? A lot of employers use these tools to help improve team performance or anticipate whether a qualified person might be a good fit. Myers-Briggs categorizes people into sixteen types; there's a ton of information out there available for the Googling. Bottom line: no "right" answers and tough to fake anyway.
posted by carmicha at 7:10 AM on January 5, 2013

As one who administers and interprets preemployment testing for a living, do not attempt to skew the results. Many of the tests appropriate for hiring situations (and there is no guarantee that the company interviewing you uses tests that are valid and free of adverse impact) don't have a built-in lie scale per se but it is pretty easy for the psychologist interpreting the results to detect someone presenting a false impression. It won't necessarily knock you out of the running, but the psychologist is naturally going to wonder what you're trying to hide.

With that said, your frame of mind in taking the test is important. Set aside the "cranky old bastard" and the part of you that resents being made "redundant" and having to submit to testing. Instead, adopt the mindset you had when you interviewed. You were apparently positive about the job and impressed the interviewer as being a good team player or you wouldn't have made it to the next round.

When used properly (and, again, there is no guarantee that this particular company is doing it correctly), psychological and ability testing are all about fit. They know you have the qualifications for the job or you would never have been interviewed in the first place, nor advanced to the second round. Now they want to understand how you'll blend with the culture, what type of management style is most effective for you, and so forth.

If you have, and can provide, a bit more information about the testing they're using, I can give you some more specific advice. Feel free to MeMail me.

Good luck!
posted by DrGail at 7:17 AM on January 5, 2013 [4 favorites]

As you take the test, envision yourself in a good job, where you do something important. Answer the question from an optimistic point of view. Not soured, embittered, or cranky-- but still you. Answer the questions as if they occurred "in a perfect world."
posted by ohshenandoah at 12:20 PM on January 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

Thanks for all your help.
I assume it will be Myers-Briggs or something similar.
I'll study the results or profiling that emerged from a similar test that was part of an earlier application for a franchise I was considering.
This seems to be a continuation of the selection process without being a classic face to face second interview.
The position attracted considerable interest apparently so I'm happy to progress to the next stage.
Will attempt to maintain that disposition.
posted by johnny7 at 1:04 PM on January 5, 2013

« Older Do you recognize this guitar piece?   |   Physical requirements of various occupations Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.