Find Your Leadership Style: Top 3 Free Assessments

Knowing yourself as a leader is one thing. Knowing how to talk about your leadership is another.  These quick, free online assessments help you do both. – By Jess Evora 

General comments about assessments

1. The leadership assessments listed below are not made to place a person into a specific box, or to “label” someone in a specific way.  These tools are meant to provide a framework with which students and professionals can begin (or continue) to develop their identity as leaders.

2. The results of these assessments can be used for both individual development & team development.  In addition, the results of these assessments can provide individuals with language they can use to communicate their strengths to their teachers, coaches, and to future employers (during job interviews for example).

3. Students may or may not agree with their assessment results, which is completely fine. In fact, we encourage facilitators to ask students if they agree, and ask students to explain why or why not.  The discussion and the self-reflection that comes from the results are just as important (if not more important) than the results themselves.

 

THE LEADERSHIP COMPASS

compass-2925824_640The Leadership Compass is our #1 pick for a convenient, yet effective free leadership assessment.  It is a very quick assessment that measures the degree to which an individual leans towards a specific “direction”. Each direction has it’s own leadership style (4 Total: North, South, East, West).  Most individuals lean between two directions (Northeast, for example). See the facilitation guide below for full details.

Why We Like It:

  • We like it because it is a printable test. It’s also a straightforward, yet valuable assessment tool that is accessible to audiences of all levels.  You can print out the test sheets for each participant and have them complete the assessment then & there.  No technology needed.  All other assessments listed below are online assessments that require participants to access a computer.
  • The facilitator’s guide (below) is wonderful, and you can customize the facilitation questions to fit your audience and your preferred timeframe. 

Our Suggested Audience:

Middle School, High School, & College Students (but may still be deemed valuable for young professionals)

Materials:

 

THE VIA CHARACTER SURVEY

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The VIA Institute on Character’s Survey  is a free online assessment, but it does require registration. The assessment should take about 15 minutes.

Why We Like It:

This is a character-based assessment that will not only help individuals in their professional life, but also in their personal life.

According to VIA Character Survey, everyone possess all 24 character strengths to some degree. The VIA website provides beautiful PDFs that display the character descriptions. You can print out the PDFs for your audience members.

Our Suggested Audience: 

High School, College Students, and Professionals of All Ages

Materials:

1. Worksheet: Overview of all 24 character strengths: 

  • To access these PDFs, go to this link, and scroll to the bottom of the page to download the PDFs you’d like to use. Many of the PDFs have the same information, but each PDF displays the information in a different way. Choose the PDFs that work best for you.
  • Our favorite version of the character strength descriptions is this PDF.

2. VIA Survey User Guidelines: 

  • These guidelines help frame the survey. Note that this survey measures only strengths, and does absolutely nothing to address weaknesses, which (funny enough) can be considered a weakness in many of the assessments we list on this page).   

 

The TypeFinder Personality Test

The TypeFinder® Personality TestThe test is free. Your basic results are free. The test must be taken online at Truity.com, and takes about 15 minutes.  This test is based on the most popular personality test in the World (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®). You can purchase a full report for $29, but the free version is effective if your organization doesn’t want to spend the money.

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Description of the Test:(from to the website): “This personality test based on the theories of Isabel Briggs Myers will assess your preferences on the four major dimensions of personality type to reveal which of the 16 personality types fits you best. You’ll see your scores for each of Briggs Myers’ four preferences, and discover the traits and characteristics that make you a unique individual.”

Why We Like It:

This test is based on the most utilized personality assessment test of all time. The test is science-based, and you can learn so much about yourself through the free version of the assessment (links below) without having to purchase the upgrade. 

Our Suggested Audience:

High School, College Students, and Professionals of All Ages

Materials:

    Facilitation Guides:

  • Resources for Leading a Team-Builder
    • This webpage provides guidelines and a list of resources you can use to lead a discussion on this leadership assessment with your team.
  • Presentation Guide
    • The official presentation guide is free and downloadable. The guide focuses on applying your personality type in the workplace, but you can easily adapt the questions to have a great discussion with students in high school or on a college campus: Facilitator’s Guide
  • Free Slideshow
    • They even have a downloadable slideshow that can help guide you through a presentation with your team.

Additional Assessments

I’ve provided below two more assessments that can be used. These assessments are not as comprehensive as the assessments above, but are good alternates if you don’t prefer the assessments above. 

1. Leadership Self-Survey and Reflection: This is a quick worksheet that students fill out after participating in a little self-reflection. This worksheet provides for fruitful discussions regarding leadership.

2. Leadership Style Survey & Activity: This is great for getting individuals to begin thinking about both their leadership style and their communication style. We like the informational components, and the way the worksheet breaks down concepts into easy-to-digest grids.


You know yourself best. 

However, these tools can give you more perspective.  As I mentioned earlier, you can choose to take the results or leave them.  You can choose to interpret the results as you like.  However, these assessments are a great way to continue on your journey of personal growth.

Just remember to enjoy your journey!

-JE


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US & OUR CULTURE

A blog that celebrates the diversity and the impact of today’s young professionals

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