As MBTI is still used by so many companies, there are often questions from delegates about how one type of profile compares against another. In an attempt to help clarify, I've posted some interesting articles and opinions from people who have used both. I hope you find the information useful!
At its core, the MBTI is about cognition, i.e. how people come to know something through the encoding, storing, processing, and retrieving of information. The MBTI suggests that behavior flows from understanding “What” types of questions:
• What is this?
• What is happening or what has happened?
• What does this mean?
Basically, then, the MBTI says that what people know determines what they will do.
The SDI is a motivational assessment that provides an understanding of what drives us and what drives others in our relationships. As a tool about motivation, the SDI speaks to our personal, deliberate, intentional strivings for what matters most: i.e. our values, which raise questions of:
• What do I want?
• What is most needed?
• What are my intentions and goals?
The basic premise is that the better we understand what we want from others in our relationships and the better we understand what others want from us, the more we can control the outcomes of our relationships. In other words with greater understanding comes greater power to relate in a way that achieves the results we desire.
The SDI is built on a theory that says that all people want to have relationships with other people. Therefore, the SDI says that what people want from their relationships determines what they will do. More simply, the SDI is about why people do what they do.
Another way of looking at the differences is to see the MBTI as an “intra-psychic” tool, i.e. it’s goal is for me to grow in self-awareness by discovering what is going on inside my own mind and my own “interests, reactions, values, motivations, and skills.” [from the CAPT website]
The SDI can best be thought of as an interpersonal tool in that its purpose is help people make behavior choices in regards to others to build communication, trust, empathy, and effective, productive relationships.
By understanding what is going on within me and how I translate that into how I relate to others around me, as well as how others affect me, I have a fuller understanding of my behavior that can be applied to teamwork, mentoring/coaching, leadership and management, job satisfaction and retention of personnel, and my own personal development.
Written by Ray Linder - Leadership, Team and Personal Development Consultant
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