Introduction to the Perspective tool

An introduction to Perspective- Learning why teams use Perspective, its theoretical background, and the Perspective framework

Updated over a week ago

Why Perspective?

In a world of dynamic teams with new people coming and going, we need a faster way for people to understand each other, appreciate different working styles, and leverage those differences to make the team collectively stronger.

What is Perspective?

Valence’s Perspective is a dynamic work-style preferences profile.

Team members take a short test to develop their initial profile, refine it by identifying which parts resonate, and selectively share with others.

Team members can then “pair” their profile with colleagues, see similarities and differences, and get customized advice on how to understand each other and work better together.

Perspective is about creating a conversation.

It gives team members a framework to talk about work styles, allowing them to discuss differences more objectively, and to attempt to see the world through a colleague’s eyes.

It’s powered by Valence’s advice engine:

  • Managers can get personalized 1:1 advice

  • Teams can get advice on meeting efficiency, onboarding processes, and more.

Your Personal Perspective Profile

The initial profile is driven by the answers to 63 questions that take less than 10 minutes to answer.

A user can then go through their initial profile and agree or disagree with the individual elements - whether that resonates with them or not.

We’ll be using that information to offer users more control over how much they choose to share with different colleagues - though Perspective users to date report over 90% resonance with their profile

Once you have completed your profile, you can view your report here

What is Perspective NOT?

Perspective is not a static personality profile that typecasts people.

Perspective is about offering people a useful framework to discuss similarities and differences. People's answers on tests and their working styles can change over time. Perspective is meant to dynamically capture those changes and allow individuals to control their profile and make it most helpful to them and their teammates.

What is the Theoretical Framework and Background for Perspective?

Personality profiles can be polarizing. Some people find them helpful to understand themselves and others better, some people resist using them.

There are a range of common Personality Profiles available to companies, each of which has strengths and weaknesses.

Some of the most common ones are:

  • Myers-Briggs based (MBTI, 16 Personalities)

  • OCEAN (Big 5)

  • DiSC

  • Insights

Types Vs. Traits

The most well known Type-based profile is the MBTI, where individuals are assigned 4 letters, enabling 16 different “types”.

The advantage of these “types” is simplicity - they are by far the most popular “out in the wild” as they offer a valuable framework for conversation and communication.

Their disadvantage is that many people actually test “in the middle” and yet are still assigned a letter. Then, if their test results change by 5 or 10% upon retaking, it yields a change in type.

The most well known Trait-based profile is the Big 5, where individuals are assigned percentiles on of five traits. (3 out of 4 of these are strongly correlated with an MBTI dimension).

These “trait” profiles, by definition, change less than a “type” and therefore have stronger scientific support.

Their disadvantage is that they have proven more difficult for users to find value from, as they are sacrificing a degree of “shorthand” that is needed for easy comparison, insight and communication.

Perspective is Trait-based

Perspective aims to offer a solution that offers both benefits.

Our framing is trait-based - you'll notice some type-based aspects (your archetype, % of overall population, and other famous people who share your archetype), but the vast majority of reporting is trait-based, where we'll indicate things like where on a spectrum you tend to lean, your specific sub-lens traits, and where your tendencies/default modes are and what to do about them.

This allows users to see that while more of their behavior might fall into one side of the spectrum, it’s normal to “show up” on the other side of the spectrum sometimes.

The Perspective Framework

Perspective’s framework integrates many elements of the Big5, with some nods to the “16 Personalities” framework, which has proven to be both robust and popular with users.

We have also updated the language to reflect a more modern workplace.

The framework consists of:

  • FourSpectrums” with a pair of traits, where users can lean more towards one trait or the other.

  • Five pairs of “lenses” in each Spectrum, where again users can lean more towards one lens-trait or the other.

  1. The Introvert-Extrovert Spectrum

  2. The Observing-Intuiting Spectrum

  3. The Thinking-Feeling Spectrum

  4. The Structured-Exploratory Spectrum

If you are familiar with personality profiles, you will recognize elements in these spectrums. Each of them borrow some elements of either Big5, 16 Personalities, or a blend.

For example, rather than using the Big5 label’s of “conscientious” and “spontaneous” we have found that “Structured” and “Exploratory” better reflect a framework for a working styles conversation.

Important Note

We want to reiterate - there is no better or worse profile. We’ve researched and worked with thousands of our users to propose a framework with the right blend of robustness and simplicity to enable productive, insightful conversations.

Did this answer your question?