What Is the Predictive Index Behavioral Assessment?

The Predictive Index Behavioral Assessment has been prevalent in the business world for the past 60 years. This pre-employment assessment is used globally by more than 8,000 organizations, from dental businesses to sports teams, and it has been translated into 70 languages. 

The PI Behavioral Assessment measures four primary characteristics of personality:

  • Dominance – To what extent do you try to control your environment?
  • Extroversion – To what extent do you seek social interaction with others?
  • Patience – To what extent do you look for consistency and stability in your environment?
  • Formality – To what extent do you try to conform to formal rules and structure?

Two additional personality traits are highlighted on the Predictive Index test: decision-making, including the way you process information and make decisions, and response level, which reflects your energy, activity level, and stamina.

From the view of prospective employers, the goal in administering a PI Behavioral Assessment is the prediction of workplace performance. Candidates' responses on the PI indicate behavioral propensities.

Some of the dozens of industries that make use of the Predictive Index include financial services, manufacturing, business services, healthcare, hospitality, and transportation.

Format and Content of the Predictive Index

The PI Behavioral Assessment is available in three formats: paper & pencil, desktop, and internet-based. Though untimed, the assessment generally takes between five and 10 minutes to complete.

There are two pages on the assessment, each containing a list of 86 adjectives. One of the pages requires you to check the adjectives that reflect your behavior. The other set of those same adjectives are to be checked in accordance with how you think others perceive you and expect you to act.

The results of the PI Behavioral Assessment provide two patterns of an individual’s workplace behavior.

  1. Self – A reflection of an individual’s natural drives and needs and how he or she naturally reacts in an environment or in certain situations.
  2. Self-Concept – A reflection of how an individual may be adapting his or her natural behaviors to the expectations of his or her current work environment.

Comparing "Self" to "Self-Concept" can reveal tension or synergy between an individual and his or her current workplace. This can be used to identify the root of observed behaviors and to help the company in both the hiring process and to improve work for current employees.

Following are some sample adjectives found on the Predictive Index: helpful, esteemed, calm, cultured, cynical, passive, and steady.

Tips for Positive Predictive Index Results

You are painting your own behavioral picture with each of the adjectives you check or leave blank. Consider every adjective from the point of view of your prospective employer. Before taking the PI, research the employer and the tasks involved in a specific job.

Approach each adjective in accordance with the parameters of the job and the attitudes and goals of the company. For example, if the employer is focused on moral values and the job entails working with other individuals, "helpful," "calm," and "steady" are a few of the adjectives you should choose to describe yourself as well as to describe how you are seen by others.

Be consistent in your selection of adjectives.

How to Prepare for the Predictive Index Personality Test

The Predictive Index is one of many behavioral profiling tools used in the employment world. Employers stress honest answers in order to ensure the job is right for you. However, if the position is important to your career, make sure the descriptive adjectives you check are those that the specific employer would like to see.

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