We know science because we’re researchers first.
Thanks to this 21st century data revolution, we now know more about the way that people work, and why they work, than ever before. However, most of this knowledge doesn't seem to trickle into the workplace. When it comes to managing and understanding people, many organizations still rely on intuition and succumb to fads, even when there is a whole field of science dedicated to knowledge advancement.
At Viewpoint Research, we have the knowledge and skills to not only develop assessments, but to bring sophisticated understanding and context to your most complex asset: people.
When developed, conducted and administered properly, assessments can provide organizations with an objective, unbiased view of "what's real."
With our two flagship products, the Organizational Health and Effectiveness Profile (OHEP), and the 360-Degree Leadership Profile (360-DLP), we work with high-performing organizations and leaders to separate perception from reality.
The field of coaching and assessments is largely unregulated, with few barriers to entry, meaning many solutions (and people) make big claims about what they can do, but the methodology isn't psychometrically sound, i.e. interventions don't work, or the tests don't predict what you want them to predict. The tools we're often exposed to are unresponsive to current and developing work, expensive, and tend to use unconventional terminology in the absence of science.
They're designed to make you think you've unlocked some sort of groundbreaking new insight about yourself, but more often than not, it's “Pseudo‐Profound Bull***t” – defined as any statement designed to inspire feelings of deep meaning and great significance, without any direct concern for meaning or truth – absent of clear science. It's not to say that many off-the-shelf, popular tools aren't "a good use of time" or effective on certain outcomes, but expectations need to be managed.
Assessments should be benchmarked against some sort of performance criterion.
If the answer is no, you might not be getting the value out of your investment and time.
When you're sick, you go to the doctor, who, if he/she is good at their job, will run a gamut of tests to arrive at an accurate diagnosis. Consider us doctors in the workplace (technically, we are). We have distilled all our experiences and academic research into one comprehensive macro, organizational assessment that measures everything from vision to trust.
Our 360-degree leadership assessment grew out of our client's needs, is grounded in our core expertise, and complements the OHEP. The 360 allows us to accurately identify and evaluate the competencies that drive high-performance leadership. The assessment involves a triangulation of feedback, and assesses everything from personality to entrepreneurial behaviours.
Like buying over-the-counter medicine, off-the-shelf surveys can help with general symptoms. However, to diagnose and treat an illness most effectively, a customized test and treatment plan is required. In the OHEP, we start with our core fundamentals and then tailor the components and our analyses to fit your company's unique culture and challenges, providing you with an accurate and customized diagnosis.
Influenced by the intellect and experience of veteran energy executive, Mac Van Wielingen, the OHEP was developed in 2015 as an evidence-based assessment organized around all the factors that are linked to workplace performance.
The OHEP is rooted in the experience and expertise of senior leaders, and hundreds of peer-reviewed academic studies. It is designed to evaluate progress on 10 core fundamentals that have clear, empirical links to performance. We have since collected over 100,000 data points, and have an internal Index of which all clients are benchmarked against.
In addition to the 10 core fundamentals, you can also opt to measure for additional factors, depending on your company's unique values and needs (i.e. conflict management, safety, etc.).
The above framework was founded on the principle that performance isn't defined by one variable (typically a financial one). Much like human health is made up of a number of factors, such as weight, BMI, mental health, cholesterol, etc., so is organizational performance. It is the comprehensive and integrated combination of vision, leadership, strategy, innovation, and commitment, among many others.
As our first step, we conduct a needs analysis to uncover organizational pain points, strengths and unique areas of interest. We review an organization's history, principles, values, and other relevant information to determine a scope of work, including analyses. Along the way, we build trust and ensure we tailor our work to the expectations.
Groundwork consists of normal housekeeping items, but we also emphasize the importance of integrity of data, the trade-off between employee confidentiality and anonymity and data quality, and most of all, our unwavering principles.
We collaborate with you to develop a tailored process best suited for your team and organization. We also evaluate every fundamental being analyzed to ensure suitability.
In our scope of work, we are accountable to your timeline and needs, where possible shifting priorities to get you what your team needs. We provide regular status updates, and always deliver on time, as promised.
Our PhD trained research team follows rigorous protocol in analysis and provides clients with the highest quality of data and understandings. We engage in all sorts of statistical tests and methods, from structural equation modelling and thematic content analysis, to basic regression, hunting for themes, patterns, and trends in the data. The scope of analysis is typically outlined in the needs phase, but we're happy to tailor analysis within reason once the data is in to accommodate requests and satisfy curiosity.
A comprehensive and tailored report is provided, with the bulk of our expertise and insights highlighted within 3 - 6 major themes emerging from the quantitative and qualitative data. Debrief meetings are provided, where our team meets with executives, employees, and/or the board to provide objective results and our strategic overview. Possible follow-up engagement includes additional research, tailored interventions, custom reports, and educational sessions.
It’s difficult to measure something as complex as human behavior, and as such, assessments need to be not only be valid and reliable, but they need to be able to measure things that actually count, especially when it comes to leadership performance.
In our 360 degree profile, we capture strategic self-awareness using a behavioural competency model, providing an objective lenses of which to accurately view our own perceptions against the perceptions of others. In this case, others' perceptions, are reality, as humans have a tendency not to see things as they are, but as they want them to be. This gap in understanding is what we call "blindspots," and while it tends to uncover the most accurate data, it's also where things get the most complicated.
Through science, we’re helping teams uncover the characteristics that set them apart and are nearly impossible to replicate.
Imagine a company where you were tasked with making a decision about a possible acquisition opportunity without having access to financial statements? Impossible, right? Now imagine a company where you were tasked with leading a team to capture market share in a highly competitive environment without having any data on your team. Equally impossible. How could you possibly be expected to make strategic decisions without any people analytics? Measurable results are fundamental to sustainability over the long-term.
While 360s are always adapted and customized to the team/organization's values and definition of high-performance leadership, our process strives for triangulation of feedback, meaning we need at least three different types of raters involved in the process, typically yourself, those that report to you, and those you report to.
Here's the rub: lots of things we know about leaders and leadership development aren't true or don’t actually work. Many development interventions are "feel-good," team building type exercises intended to be uplifting and enjoyable, and even perhaps educational in the moment, but many have no lasting benefit. With research expertise from the leadership field and extensive hands-on experience working with CEOs, here are some things we've learned and observed that have influenced our practices, assessments, and advice:
While we have developed and validated our own assessments, sometimes the nature of project or problem requires a customized solution. While off-the-shelf tools work for some people and organizations, we also believe in customization because research tells us that context matters, whether it’s in leadership roles, or hiring and selection. When working with organizations, we always first identify the problem and then mutually go from there, working to agree on the right methodology and path forward. Connect with us if you have a burning idea about research in your organization.