Q: I'm curious about the data that is used when comparing responses from current users of the various LPI instruments vs. norms established from others. For example, are results from the LPI-Self instrument plotted against a LPI-Self normative database? Are results from mangers plotted against data collected from managers? Or is the normative database used for comparative purposes a collection of all responses from leaders and observers?
A: That is an excellent question and one that we have been recently discussing as the quantity of responses we now have gathered into our database has grown substantially and new ways of slicing-and-dicing the data is now possible. However at this time, we do not break out leaders and observers into separate data segments against which direct comparisons can be made (e.g., self responses vs. self/leader data). Currently we also do not segment response data from observers based on their relationship to the principle LPI participant. Right now, we have no specific normative databases for managers, coworkers, etc. Rather, all responses to the Observer instrument are aggregated.
Based on the amount of data we now have, there is a potential opportunity to implement such a change in the LPI Online that would allow results to be plotted in a more specific way. That may be considered as a future enhancement to the capabilities offered through the site. We would be unable, however, to fine-tune the data to this same degree for responses processed from paper submissions.
Barry Z. Posner is Dean of the Leavey School of Business and Professor of Leadership at Santa Clara University where he has received numerous teaching and innovation awards. He is co-author of The Leadership Challenge.