Using Hogan Assessments to Explore Team Culture and Unconscious Bias

Team Culture*This is a guest post authored by David Biggs, PhD, of Advanced People Strategies.

I have always been fascinated with teams and their impact on organizations. My most recent work in this area has been using the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI), Hogan Development Survey (HDS), and Motives, Values, Preferences Inventory (MVPI) from Hogan Assessments.

  • HPI – Measures everyday personality and can be used to predict job performance.
  • HDS – Identifies potential personality-based performance and derailment behaviors.
  • MVPI – Reveals a person’s core values, goals, and interests.

One of the advantages of using psychometrics is the ability to quickly discover a team’s underlying motivations and personality factors.

Schein (1990) warns that misalignment of team values and underlying assumptions can lead to serious organizational conflicts. I have certainly seen that in my career, with project managers falling out and physically coming to blows over resources.

The first step in the process of creating a better-functioning team is improving trust. This involves encouraging people to feel OK with being vulnerable, open, and honest in front of their coworkers. Improving trust is easier said than done. Putting ourselves at risk of failure or ridicule can be difficult to achieve. Individual differences are also a factor. For example, individuals who are more skeptical can be less trusting, especially under pressure.

Lencioni (2005) suggests that behavioral profiling might be key to improving trust within teams by giving team members an objective, reliable measure for understanding one another. This aids the team in admitting weaknesses and strengths to one another, which is part of building an effective team. It also provides the team with a common vocabulary for describing their differences and similarities.

We often use the Hogan assessments (HPI, HDS, and MVPI) for both individual and team development. At the 2020 Division of Occupational Psychology conference, a case study was presented that demonstrates the process of using the assessments for development in a team among whom skepticism made trust difficult to foster.