By Jonathan Kirschner, Psy.D. • July 8, 2011

Executive Assessment for Development

I was recently posed the following dilemma by a prospective coaching client. " I know exactly what my issues are and what I need to do. Nevertheless, despite knowing exactly how disorganized I am and how difficult it is for me to achieve follow-through, I can't seem to change anything. I've read books, hired organization experts, and yet, my desk never ceases to look like a disaster. Do you think you can help me?"

So the million dollar question is... if the prospective client knew already, why has he not been successful in his efforts to change?

The answer is that while a person may be well aware of their own weaknesses, that knowledge typically resides on an implicit level. As such, we may have a strong sense of something being problematic in our daily living or operative style but not have access to that knowledge in an explicit way that would lead to a sustainable change.

The bridge between implicit knowledge and explicit understanding is insight. Insight is knowledge infused with meaning, and has the effect of supplying basic knowledge with a powerful charge. When an individual goes beyond knowing that they are disorganized to achieving an insight-based understanding, they realize how the dots connect between past, present, and future. They become aware of how relationships, family history, significant events, learning styles, and personality impact their emotional and behavioral patterns. Insight is able to provide the "why" for what we do, and when we are able to engage the "why," insight becomes a guiding force that drives change.

The purpose of a developmental executive assessment is to give definition to that which is implicitly known and translate that information into meaningful insight. This insight, when delivered in a safe and nurturing way, has the capacity to unlock developmental stuckness and usher in a will to change.

As business psychologists, we believe there are few better ways to achieve the goal of insight than through a comprehensive assessment process. At AIIR Consulting, we adminisiter up to five psychometric assessments to learn about our client's underlying strengths, weaknesses, beliefs, conflicts, and values. We then interview the  individual to learn about how their own upbringing, family system, and career history inform their personal narrative, their current operative style, and their future vision. Then we ask between 6-10 of the most important stakeholders in the indvidual's work life how they see this person through their lens (360 degree assessment). When we synthesize those three pools of data through a comprehensive assessment report and feedback coaching session, our goal is nothing short of achieving an insight-laden experience that can serve as the springboard for sustained development and change.  To learn more about AIIR Consulting's approach to assessment, please feel free to contact me at [email protected]