The Predictive Index: 412th Force Support Squadron makes strides in Force development and talent management through use of a behavioral analysis program.

  • Published
  • By MSgt John Wyatt
  • 412th Force Support Squadron

412th Force Support Squadron makes strides in Force development and talent management through use of a behavioral analysis program.

Preparing to win the ‘2030 Fight’ is not an easy task. The 412th Force Support Squadron has found one way to get ahead in that goal by creating the ‘Airmen of 2030’ today.

Over the past year, the 412th Force Support Squadron has partnered with The Predictive Index Company to incorporate its behavioral analysis tool, which has been used to assess over 250 employees within FSS and other Units across the 412th Test Wing. An assessment that has proven to be vital in talent management and optimization efforts through improved training, retention, and organizational communication and structure.

The use of an assessment or tool to aid in the development and understanding of a Unit’s personnel is not a new concept. However, most often when an assessment is incorporated into a Unit, they are using personality tests such as Myers-Briggs, DiSC, 16 Personalities, Hogan Personality Inventory, Four Lenses, amongst many others.

While personality assessments can be useful, what separates the Predictive Index (PI) from these other assessments is that PI measures behavior and not personality. Creating a differential that has allowed the 412th Force Support Squadron to stand out and find success and wins that just keep on coming.

Built on sixty years of proven science, software, and a robust curriculum of insightful management workshops and tools, the PI platform is designed to align business strategy with people strategy (talent management) for optimal business and mission results. The PI Company notes that when organizations have incorporated talent optimization efforts, they have a 90% success rate in reaching strategic goals over the 73% of those that do not.

As the Force grows leaner, there is a need to become increasingly more agile in how to effectively achieve the mission. Understanding personnel and how they perform and operate is both a strategic and tactical initiative that only helps to better serve the Total Force. The PI assessment allows both individuals and leaders to develop their self-awareness and emotional intelligence in an attempt to realize that effort.

“After taking the assessment, I was honestly surprised how spot on it was. It was like looking at myself on paper and going ‘yup that’s me alright,’” said TSgt Steffany Hill, NCOIC of Force Management & Customer Service.

Rather than testing an individual on their skills, the assessment measures behavioral characteristics across the identified four human drives of Dominance, Extraversion, Patience, and Formality. Once measured, an individual is assigned as one of seventeen different behavioral profiles, each with their own uniquely defined strengths, blind spots, and behavioral tendencies. These drives provide insight into current and potential employees to determine if they are the right fit for a role or the organization.

 “An example of the great success we’ve had in using PI has been using it with assigning members to different sections, especially our new inbounds and pipeline Airmen,” says MSgt Tanya Sipos, Force Management and Customer Service Section Chief. “We’ve sent the assessment to each inbound member and once completed, review their profile to ensure we are assigning them to the most suitable best role for both the individual and the team.”

The PI Company also boasts that organizations actively engaged in Talent Optimization have a 30% lower employee turnover rate. As a Force that is impacted by recruitment and retention issues of top-talent, a 30% increase in those efforts could mean the difference between winning or losing the ‘2030 Fight’.

After implementing the PI and a talent management and optimization strategy, the 412th Force Support Squadron has seen a reduction in the amount of turnover in its personnel as compared to previous years. Additionally, using PI has allowed the Unit to grow leaders and promote from within as well as bolster its hiring outside talent process.  These combined efforts have enabled the 412th Force Support Squadron’s hiring process to transition from a ‘most qualified’ model to a ‘right person’ model without personal or undue bias.

More than just a personnel assignment and management tool.

Encompassed with each behavioral profile is a toolkit containing reports, charts and guides that help both the individual and supervisor in constructing enriched and comprehensive one on one interactions and developing better relationships with others.

“We can see how people are interacting or are going to interact with each other,” says Sipos.

 “Perhaps the best advantage of using PI over other assessments is that the software platform provides managers and supervisors multiple guides and pathways to having a more in-depth and meaningful feedback session with their employees,” says Maj. Elizabeth Moyer, the 412th Force Support Squadron Commander.

The provided reports and guides, such as the Behavioral Report provide in-depth overviews of people’s behaviors, granting specific insights and strategies to maximize their effectiveness, productivity, and job satisfaction. As well as discovering how any two people work together, with instant recommendations using the 1:1 Relationship Guide.

The Manager Development Chart and Strategy Guide provides managers with self-awareness tips so they can leverage their personal strengths to effectively manage their teams, instill confidence in others and build on their coaching skills.

 “Another big benefit of using PI is that it also works as an organizational culture and team building tool. The assessment allows us to see the various type of people we have on our teams so we can tailor our people and mission strategies to best fit our team’s needs and goals. It truly empowers individuals to grow their emotional intelligence and self-awareness, ultimately benefiting our organizational climate,” says Senior Master Sergeant William Chesnutt, Flight Chief, Military Personnel Flight.

There is no close hold on their success.

After being implemented throughout the squadron, PI was introduced into the Ellington Airman Leadership School to be tested on future supervisors.

“The students had nothing but great feedback about the program,” says Technical Sergeant Annarose Schoonmaker, an instructor at the schoolhouse. “It really helped them to learn about themselves and improved their communication and interactions amongst each other.”

The PI program has also been shared with multiple locations across 5 MAJCOMs, and has already been implemented by one other ALS across the Air Force. Additionally, PI was used during the 412th Test Wing’s Major Select Professional Development Seminar this past May and will integrated into the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development Seminar later this month.