Study of Myers-Briggs Types Relative to CM Professionals (2007)

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Summary:
Mario Moreira conducted a study of CM professionals to find out what similarities and differences could be found between them. He then compared those results with what he learned from a similar study he conducted four years prior, to see what has changed, and what's stayed the same.

Introduction
In 2003, I completed what I believe to be the first-ever study on the Myers-Briggs types of CM professionals that included input from 144 CM professionals (a link to the 2003 article can be found in the Reference section).  It is now 2007, approximately 4 years later and I introduce the second such study which includes input from 87 CM professionals. 

The key objectives of this study are to:

    • Identify if there are common traits (using Myers-Briggs) amongst those professionals who work in the CM field
    • Identify if there are difference traits (using Myers-Briggs) between those playing CM process roles vs. CM tool roles
    • Compare results from a 2003 study with the results from this 2007 study and use it to validate (or not) the common personality traits identified in the first study.  

The input has been received and tabulated.  The results are in...   

Overview of Myers-Briggs
Before we jump into the data, a baseline of information on Myers-Briggs is provided for  understanding.  "The development of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator required the imagination and drive of two very gifted women, Katharine Cook Briggs and her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers. The original concept for the Type Indicator evolved from Katharine Cook Briggs's extensive studies of contemporary children's educational and social

developmental theories. She combined these with the theories of the prominent
psychologist Carl Jung to develop a testing method to help determine the best vocation for a child, what she saw as a key to their future happiness and well being. She was joined in this effort by her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers in the late 1920's and early 1930's as she began raising a family of her own. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator [MBTI] began life as the Briggs-Myers Type Indicator Test , which Katharine and Isabel constantly worked on further refining with the assistance of Edward Laney (a manager at The Pennsylvania Company who was the first to utilize and apply the MBTI concept to personnel management) under the auspices of Briggs-Myers Type Research, Inc. The
name changed was to ‘Myers-Briggs Type Indicator' in the late 1940's. From there it grew in several stages: in association with Educational Testing Service during the late 1950's and into the early 1960's, later publication through the Consulting Psychologist Press, establishment of the Typology Lab at the University of Florida in conjunction with Dr. Mary H. McCaulley, and the Center for Applications of Psychological  Type (CAPT) in Gainesville, FL." (University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries Special Collections,
Isabel Briggs Myers Papers Manuscript Group 64). 

Preferences
As a summary, the following is a brief overview of the specific Myers Briggs personality types.  The Myers Briggs model of personality is based on examining 4 preference sets. The preference sets include:

    • Introvert (I) or Extrovert (E) - Do you direct your energies outwardly with words (E) or inwardly with thoughts (I)?  Do you gain energy in social settings (E) or in private or focused activities (I)?
    • Sensing (S) or Intuition (N) - Are you interested in tangible facts and focus on the present (S) or are you more interested in the future, focusing on what might be (N)?
    • Thinking (T) or Feeling (F) - Do you make decisions on logic and objective reasoning (T) or do you make decisions on personal values, subjective, and sympathetic reasoning (F)?
    • Judging (J) or Perceiving (P) - Is your life organized in a structured way (J) or in a more flexible way (P)?  Do you feel the need to conclude a task or make a decision (J) or do you prefer to find out more and keep your options open (P)?

Personality Types and Population Distribution
The above preferences combine to create a possibility of 16 personality types known as the Myers Briggs Type Indicators® (MBTI®).

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About the author

Mario  Moreira's picture Mario Moreira

Mario Moreira is a Columnist for the CM Journal, a writer for the Agile Journal, an Author, an Agile and CM expert for CA, and has worked in the CM field since 1986 and in the Agile field since 1998. He has experience with numerous CM technologies and processes and has implemented CM on over 150 applications/products, which include establishing global SCM infrastructures. He is a certified ScrumMaster in the Agile arena having implemented Scrum and XP practices. He holds an MA in Mass Communication with an emphasis on communication technologies. Mario also brings years of Project Management, Software Quality Assurance, Requirement Management, facilitation, and team building skills and experience. Mario is the author of a new book entitled “Adapting Configuration Management for Agile Teams” (via Wiley Publishing). It provides an Agile Primer and a CM Primer, and how to adapt CM practices for Agile Teams. Mario is also the author of the CM book entitled, “Software Configuration Management Implementation Roadmap.” It includes step-by-step guidance for implementing SCM at the organization, application, and project level with numerous examples. Also consider visiting Mario’s blog on CM for Agile and Agile adoption at http://cmforagile.blogspot.com/.
 

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