If you've ever taken the Myers-Briggs personality assessment you may have spent some time wondering how to put your newfound self-awareness to use. Knowledge of one's personality type and decision-making process can be handy when it comes to major choices in life, such as what type of car to buy, especially in a world that often associates vehicles with personality. It's an expensive commitment you'll want to be happy with.
As a thought exercise of sorts, Ford teamed up with CPP this month to provide MBTI assessments for all attendees at the Go Further With Ford conference in Detroit this week (including me). After being typed, Ford suggested a range of cars that best suited each attendee's personality. Although not exactly deeply scientific I was impressed to see that the closest match to my type, INTP, was indeed my favorite current Ford model - the Fusion.
But clever model matching wasn't really the point, the point was to see how personality awareness could help a consumer make a decision he or she was happy with. As a case in point, CPP's head certification trainer, Michael Segovia told me he once bought a car based on the fact that he liked the person selling it to him (a very INFP thing to do). Unfortunately he ultimately regretted the decision and pledged to pay more attention to the way INFPs go about making decisions to avoid similar mistakes in the future.
Better self awareness is good for a lot of reasons, and even as an experiment it was interesting to see Ford putting more thought into how and why their customers choose certain models over others.
One might guess that the same kind of psychological understanding might also be used in marketing products and maybe even in the sales process. However, there are no current plans for Ford to take the MBTI to the sales floor or anywhere else. But next time you're at a car dealer and he asks you "Do you get bored at parties often?", you'll know what's going on.
In case you're curious, this particular experiment only suggested 7 models for 7 out of the 16 possible personality types. Bear in mind, these were "suggested" models for invented personas with each personality type, not necessarily the ideal car for the type. They were as follows:
INFP - C-Max Hybrid
Ed Note: Travel expenses to the event were covered by Ford
Nick Aster is the founder of TriplePundit.
TriplePundit.com has grown to become one of the web's leading sources of news and ideas on how business can be used to make the world a better place. It was acquired in 2017 by 3BLMedia, the leading news distribution and content marketing company focused on niche topics including sustainability, health, energy, education, philanthropy, community and other social and environmental topics.
Prior to TriplePundit Nick worked for Mother Jones magazine, successfully re-launching the magazine's online presence. He worked for TreeHugger.com, managing the technical side of the publication for 3 years and has also been an active consultant for individuals and companies entering the world of micro-publishing. He also worked for Gawker Media and Moreover Technologies in the early days of blogging.
Nick holds an MBA in sustainable management from the Presidio School of Management and graduated with a BA in History from Washington University in St. Louis.