Daily Archives: 02/06/2014

The Survey and the Occasional Remarkable Time it Seems to Work

Surveys…

Who are you? What is your favourite colour? Where should you live? What era should you have been born in? Which Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle were you? If you were a type of vegetable, which would you be?

Okay, the last one is fictional, but the point is that surveys are everywhere.

Used to help companies gather information, they are often irrelevant, inaccurate pieces of rubbish which tell you nothing, whilst telling the survey creator everything.

Yes, surveys are for the most part some of the most meaningless and insulting things created by the modern marketing executive.

Sometimes though, just sometimes, one crops up that seems eerily accurate. That happened tonight when I filled in one in preparation for an interview tomorrow.

At 12pm on Monday 2nd June, I’ll be meeting a few guys from Stopgap Recruitment.

Stopgap are a Marketing Recruitment Firm based in Richmond, London. With rolls going in a variety of industries, they go out of their way to search through roles to find the perfect job for you.

On this occasion, they also asked me to fill out a Survey to help identify my personality.

For once, amazingly, this one was eerily accurate. It actually, is slightly scary.

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Based on what you’ve told us, your character type is Confidant

The Confidant has two contrary characteristics, curiosity and shyness. They love to know what’s going on, feel excluded if not kept informed but do not like to be the centre of attention. The Confidant always wants to be invited to the party – even though the chances are they won’t show up!

There is a sensitive, caring side to the Confidant that means they will see the interconnections between people and pick up on the verbal and non-verbal cues. The Confidant prefers not to be constrained by rules and regulations and does not like only routine. Others will see the Confidant as totally flexible, gentle and difficult to understand. The Confidant likes to do things in their own way and just get on with it, uninhibited and not micromanaged.

The Confidant would not appreciate criticism or a hard task-master. Yet there is a crusading side to the Confidant which would surprise even those who knew the person well. When a personal value, or belief is trodden on, then the Confidant can become more outspoken and vocal. Their values are usually so well hidden that the other person may not realise, but the Confidant becomes like a champion of the cause and will become expressive, animated and direct.

The Confidant values most those who take the time, trouble and effort to really get to know them. Only those who are allowed through the Confidant ‘assault course’ will get genuinely close. To others the Confidant will seem like a gentle enigma. The Confidant will often display their reactions to their feelings, rather than their actual feelings, and may bottle things up which will only become apparent later.

A Confidant does not like to be categorised. They value their autonomy, and feel ‘different,’ and any system, (including this one), which tries to ‘define’ or ‘explain’ them would be denigrated. The Confidant would say, ‘You can’t put me in a box, I’m different,’ indeed they would all say this.

WHAT YOU WILL SEE

The Confidant is a special, sensitive individual who needs a role that is far more than a job. The Confidant needs to feel that everything they do in their lives is in accordance with their strongly-felt value systems, and is moving them and/or others in a positive, growth-oriented direction. They are driven to do something meaningful and purposeful with their lives. The Confidant will be happiest in roles which allow them to live their daily lives in accordance with their values, and which work towards a vision or the greater good.

  • A strong value system
  • A warm and genuine interest in people
  • Service-oriented, usually putting the needs of others above their own
  • Loyal and devoted to people and causes
  • Flexible and laid-back, unless a ruling principle is violated – then crusading
  • Sensitive and complex, they want to be seen and appreciated for who they are
  • A dislike of detail and routine work, unless it contributes to the common good
  • Original and individualistic – ‘out of the mainstream’

WHAT COMES EASY

Confidants are driven by values and loyalty – they must ‘buy-in.’ Then they will work long and hard for the cause, often quietly behind the scenes and offering more than just getting the tasks done – they are like glue and offer support, help and empathy way beyond their job ‘remit.’ Cautious in the beginning of a relationship, a Confidant will be fiercely loyal once they are committed. Confidants are adaptable and congenial, unless a principle has been violated, in which case they become uncharacteristically harsh and crusading defenders of their values.

  • A warm and genuine concern about others
  • A sensitivity and perceptiveness about what others are feeling
  • Loyalty and commitment
  • Striving for ‘win-win’ situations
  • Nurturing, supportive and encouraging
  • Flexible and caring
  • Quickly understanding different situations and grasping new concepts
  • Doing something that seems truly important to them

WHAT NEEDS DEVELOPING

The Confidant is extremely complex being deep and private yet needing to know and (more importantly to them) feel they belong. This sense of belonging brings out all their best qualities and they will offer long-term commitment and loyalty way beyond what we could reasonably expect. However they do not like work for work’s sake nor feeling undervalued or just one of the masses. The Confidant is special and s/he will need to feel connected up to the inner core of the organisation and feel certain that what they do (however mundane) has real meaning and value to them.

  • Being open and sharing feelings, thoughts and views
  • Being open to the involvement of others, welcoming others into the group
  • Confronting difficult situations/conflict head on rather than avoiding it
  • Needing to receive praise and approval
  • Focussing on logical/objective criteria during stressful situations
  • Taking time out to recognise their own value/contribution in a given situation
  • Being aware and allowing for how their own style impacts on others

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Despite a few minor spelling errors (pretty sure “Focusing” has one S), the report feels at times a bit eerie. It feels like a strange psychological evaluation of me really.

Parts are incorrect, like the idea of not being categorized for example. I’d actually suggest that deep down we all want to feel like we are cataloged into a specific genre/type/brand. Hence doing quizzes like this. I think it helps us to identify who we are and what we want to do with our lives. I think it is a fascinating update of the tribal situation. Just like how people can group themselves together as “Harlequins Fans” or “Geeks” or a variety of other selections. From a social purpose, it helps us to know who we are and what we want to be.

This need to belong is ingrained in all of us to some degree, so to not want to be “in a box” is not necessarily true.

Still, one minor inconsistency aside, the quiz makes for fascinating reading and on this one occasion, well worth giving a go.

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