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What is a Leadership Assessment?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 08 November 2016
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A leadership assessment is the evaluation of one's style and skills as a leader. Leadership self-assessment can be an informative analysis tool for those considering business management careers. A leadership assessment is a part of many business management classes as well as some corporate development workshops.

Leadership assessments vary widely in their format, but they all ask workplace leaders to rate themselves in categories such as motivating others, setting examples and giving out career advice. Some leadership tests will instruct individuals to rate themselves for questions such as "How good of a listener are you to your employees?" with a choice of very good, good, fair or poor. A leadership assessment may not use questions, but rather statements. For instance after a statement such as "I'm a good listener to all of my employees," the choice of answers may be "This sounds like me," "This doesn't sound like me," "This somewhat sounds like me."

After the test taker finishes the leadership assessment questions or statements, he or she follows instructions for determining the results. The skills-based leadership assessments will evaluate the workplace leader's strengths as well as areas to work on. The style-based assessments will evaluate different leadership styles depending on the test taker's responses to the questions or statements.

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Leadership assessment test takers can gain valuable knowledge about themselves and how they lead others. The test results can inspire leaders to rethink how they lead others and set goals for change. They may choose to brush up on skills they scored low on according to some leadership assessments and continue or increase their favorably assessed workplace behaviors. Basically, leadership assessments can motivate workplace leaders to change their on-the-job management style.

Some types of leadership assessments ask the test taker to answer questions as they think those who work under them would. When answered honestly, these types of self-assessment tests can really be eye opening for some leaders. Understanding how one's leadership style, skills and behavior may affect others can prepare leaders to make any needed changes in their interaction with subordinates and co-workers. Seeing things from others' point of view can give a leader insight into how much empathy he or she has toward people on the job.

After taking assessment tests, a workplace leader may choose to not only make leadership style changes or gain new skills, but use resource tools. For instance, he or she may discuss the results of a leadership assessment with a mentor to get his or her comments and advice. Journaling new leadership goals is another method of communicating about assessment test results.

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