Wednesday May 31, 2023

Domestic Violence Survivor: I Am Not Broken

I was involved in a ten plus year relationship that involved domestic violence. I am no longer in that situation. As a survivor, I am not broken. It took time for me to learn who I was and to like me. And just so there’s no doubt for anyone reading this, I like me. I’m comfortable alone. I’m comfortable with my intelligence and with my looks. I am comfortable with how I run my business and how I communicate with others. I like me and I am not broken. 

Employers, Be Careful with Subjective Tests

Recently, I was asked to take what is essentially a personality test for a client. The client has good intentions and wanted everyone to take it that’s on my specific team. The goal was so that the client could essentially help us become the best we can be. The problem is that making statements like that with people you don’t know can damage those people. Employers, be careful with those tests and in how you word the reasoning of your use. Wanting to use the results to get to know someone’s work style? Great. Wanting to use the results to “improve” your employees? Not always great. They may be happy with who they are. Your goals for them may not be their goals.

Employers, be careful with those tests. If you have survivors or victims of domestic violence on your team, you may not even know it. Saying something on how the results can show people how to improve (when you don’t know them) can damage them.

I Like Me and I Don’t Plan to Change

My results didn’t tell anyone anything they didn’t already know about me. I’m intellectual, analytical, make deliberate decisions, and I’m fine working alone. That doesn’t mean I’m broken. It doesn’t mean I need to work on my people skills (in fact, when I was a paralegal my work nickname was Schmooze Criminal for a reason). It doesn’t mean that I’m not a team worker. It just means I don’t need constant supervision, guidance, or reassurance.

I like me. I don’t need anyone to “coach” me to be something other than who I am and to say otherwise means you’ve not taken the time to learn anything about who I am or what I’m capable of doing. I am the true version of what the test results said: don’t really care what others think about me.

I like me. I know I am talented. I know I am brilliant. I know I live in a world full of double standards when it comes to being a woman. There’s nothing wrong with me. I am not broken. I don’t plan to change.

If You’re Giving a Personality Test…

If you’re giving a personality test, it’s about learning the crux of someone’s personality…and maybe, if you’re lucky, their work style. Work is kinda like marriage – don’t go into it thinking you can change someone. Personalities can’t necessarily be changed…and when people want to change it is because THEY want to change and not because someone else wants them to do it.

Choose a personality test that has questions that make sense. It’s just silly to rely on a test that has unrelated options. And the test I took? Each “question” had two options and you chose which one you were most like…or neutral. I chose neutral quite a bit because it wasn’t an apples to apples comparison. It was like…apples to tigers. That’s inherently unfair to you and to the person taking the test.

So, I feel like I was told I need to change by people who don’t know me who wanted to use an inherently flawed measuring system. In science, this experiment and its results couldn’t be published because of its ridiculousness. Seriously. I am not broken. I am a survivor and I don’t need people who don’t know me telling me to change.

And that’s the ugly side of working from home.

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