The Townsend Personality Questionnaire (TPQ®) is developed for personal and workplace development. Unlike most assessments that are based on theories of personality that have resulted from one particular psychologist’s theory and opinion about human nature, the TPQ® is based on the Five-Factor model – a concept that it is founded on the idea that five main factors are necessary and sufficient for broadly describing human personality. What separates the TPQ® from many other personality assessments is that it is based on language and the ‘natural’ systems that people use to understand one another.
“… Language is the one ingredient that all theories have in common. So, it is from language itself, and not theories, that we must extract the source metaphor for describing personality”
Howard & Howard, 2004.
The questionnaire was developed by Dr Gary C. Townsend of Skillworx Africa (Pty) Ltd.
Why measure personality
Personality questionnaires consider how people experience and react to the world around them. It also helps to highlight each individual’s unique behavioural contribution within the workplace. Personality assessments offer a more scientific approach to understanding what the individual “brings to the table” as a totality – it is in a sense a window into how the individual has been wired and nurtured from birth. Measuring and understanding personality is not about assessing the ability of any individual but rather about understanding one’s individual personality style in relation to others in order to optimise effective functioning in society and the workplace. The comprehensive information gathered from this process provides individuals, employers, and teams a useful starting point for personal development, team performance, and hiring discussions.
Participants undertaking the 120-item TPQ® assessment receive a detailed report containing the following five dimensions and their six related facets (30 in total):
EXTRAVERSION: Sociable, Contracted, Assertive, Thrill-seeking, Unguarded, Engaging
SOCIABILITY: Candid, Compassionate, Altruistic, Modest, Empathic, Collaborative
CONSTANCY: Relaxed, Resilient, Optimistic, Impervious, Self-controlled, Tempered
CONSCIENTIOUSNESS: Self-disciplined, Dutiful, Competent, Structured, Cautious, Directed
ORIGINALITY: Creative, Complex, Composed, Conceptual, Conversant, Unconventional
Benefits for the individual
The insights gained from the TPQ® assessment will provide any individual with an objective idea of their behavioural strengths and opportunities for development. It offers an opportunity to understand how specific behavioural traits combine to produce a specific personality style. This will help highlight the individual’s uniqueness as well as provide a solid platform for understanding the implications of dealing with others in broader society.
Benefits for the organisation
At the broadest level, the TPQ® will enable an organisation to gain reliable and comprehensive assessments of an individual’s “way of doing things”. Understanding the personality style of any potential employee is a fundamental piece of the “organisational fit” question in any hiring process. In this day and age of high mobility one can never underestimate the importance of ensuring that the individual being hired or assigned to a specific project is the proper fit for job. The personality assessment goes a long way to ensuring that you not only have the most qualified and competent employees, but that they are the right fit for the organisation.
TPQ® Development Report
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