TOS Review Crew: PeopleKeys

This year, I'll be graduating our first student from our home school. It's hard to believe how quickly these last 13 years have gone by. My daughter and I have spent many hours discerning, watching and waiting as God slowly has been unfolding her next steps for the future. This review came at a great time for us as we continue to seek the Lord's direction for Janna. peoplekeys-logo_zpse1faa0a6

Company Information: PeopleKeys is a worldwide leader in behavioral analysis that has developed the online technology to  help employers and employees alike best understand personality, strengths, career style, cognitive thinking style, and more. Using the popular DISC assessment, their student workbooks and online reports help aid children as young as nine years old to discover their unique mix of traits and how best to use them to their greatest advantage.

Though the company appears to be geared towards businesses hiring employees, the assessments that the TOS Review Crew received are appropriate for students, generally age 13 and up (though they do have an assessment for younger students as well!). This allows me, as a homeschool parent, the ability to help guide my students as they explore their options for the future. 

peoplekeys-discprofile_zpsfb30d227Product Reviewed: DISC Career Style Report, online. This profile is completed online, with results compiled into a report outlining the general characteristics of your particular style and how that style can best fit in the workplace. The report also includes tips on how to help you to better communicate with co-workers of different styles and suggestions for careers that are a good fit for your particular style. Scrolling down this page and clicking the "eDISC Instructions" link in the additional downloads section can give you a peek into the process and what the assessment looks like. 

Price: $32.00

Age Range: Ages 13 to adult.

Parental Preparation: After purchase, a link to access the assessment will be provided by e-mail. After agreeing to the terms of use, your child can take the assessment, which takes about 10-15 minutes to complete. After completion, a PDF with using the responses from the assessment will be generated and sent to you.

Of course, the accuracy of this evaluation will depend on how honest you are with it. It was important to remind Janna to complete it without trying to think too hard about it or to try to come up with what she thought was the "best" answer.

How We Used It:

Janna already has a good idea of what she'd like to study and focus on, but this assessment helped her to understand how her personality fit into the mix. After taking the assessment, we spent some time evaluating whether or not she thought the description fit how she saw herself (which she said it did for the most part). We also looked through the list of suggested best careers, but found that her interest, photography, was on the "close match" page. However, it did give us the chance to talk about other options to consider.

What We Liked:

  • The assessment was very simple and quick, with results that pretty accurately described Janna. She did not have any trouble completing it on her own. 
  • The results provided a good way to initiate conversation between us. The page on "Tips for Your Professional Style" was especially helpful to discuss together. Some of the tips really opened up some very real issues that I've already seen in Janna as she deals with responsibilities and her work, which are good to keep in mind.
  • "Homemaking" was included in the list of best careers for Janna. I'm glad that it is acknowledged and valued!

Thoughts:

  • Janna's S" and the "C" scores were one point apart. As they were so close, we were wondering what the "C" results would have said about her or if they are factored into the report.
  • The assessment is geared towards those who were looking into jobs in the marketplace, but I think that the suggestions given can help even if you own your own business or "work" in managing a home. However, this may need a parent to help make the connections or modifications.

Overall Summary:

For many years, my husband and I worked on the college campus as campus ministers. I can't tell you how many times I have seen students switch majors a couple of years into their studies because they found that they liked something else. What a waste of time and money! I didn't want my kids to do that! I know we couldn't afford it.

Although $32 seemed like a lot of money for a 15 minute test, it's definitely a smaller price to pay than several thousand dollars of college tuition! Also, if administered in the junior high or early high school years, I think this would help give time for you and your child to explore possible career options while they are still at home.

All in all, I think it's a great tool to utilize. It gets you moving in a direction that best fits your child, opens doors for discussion and gives starting points for practical training in work skills. I'm planning to have my junior higher take the assessment in a year or so, as he gets a sense of what he enjoys doing. I remember my daughter in her junior high years really starting to take a strong interest in graphic design and photography, which helped us to plan her high school course work. It would have been nice to take the assessment earlier, but as it is, it has proven to be affirmation for her in what we have already been noticing.

If you've ever wondered how you can serve your children as a career guidance counselor, this may be a great tool for you!

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