Our Personality Tasks directly measure a MOSAIC of individual behaviours in order to assess the full picture of personality. The tasks identify the potential blind spots of personality using a combination of 7 digital tasks and a self-report questionnaire. Our direct measurement of personality offers a fake-resistant assessment. This means it offers a unique level of insight, objectivity and assurance to this nebulous and well-trodden science.

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What’s the problem with using a questionnaire?

One of the biggest known issues with questionnaire assessments is with faking results and blind-spots. Our research has found that existing methods to detect faking (e.g. social desirability scales) are not always effective. As personality is so hard to measure it means that decisions about recruitment and development are often based on inaccurate data. This can lead to the wrong people being hired and the wrong development needs being identified.

However, self-report questionnaires do provide important information about how an individual views themselves. Mosaic Personality Tasks combines this information with a direct objective behavioural measurement to provide the complete picture.

Our Solution – based on decades of research

Mosaic Personality Tasks was developed over 4+ years of research and development. It is based on decades of published peer-reviewed academic research. During this time we have regularly presented our scientific approach to industry and our Psychology peers. This has included conferences in China, Trinidad, Hong Kong and the UK. Please read our blogs for more information on our research and findings.

Our Mosaic Personality Tasks assessment has been comprehensively validated against the widely respected NEO Personality questionnaire (iPiP version), against ratings of volunteers’ personality provided by their peers (spouse, family member or close friend), and against volunteers’ recent life history (personality biodata).

Using a research cohort of around 480 volunteers and a further 315 peers  our unique behavioural tasks component of the Mosaic tool has repeatedly demonstrated statistically significant correlations with NEO personality ratings, peer ratings of personality and recent life history. This has involved 4 separate studies of 120 individuals i.e. repeated cross-validation.

Full reliability and validity results will be available in our technical manual soon. Please contact us (admin@mosaictasks.com) in the meantime if you would like a copy.

At every stage of our research, we have shared our scientific findings with hundreds of Psychologists and assessment experts around the world, including:

  • The British Psychological Society’s Division of Occupational Psychology
  • The Association of Business Psychologists, UK
  • The Psychometrics Forum, London
  • The International Assessment & Development Centre Conference, twice (China and UK)
  • Division of Industrial-Organizational Psychology Hong Kong
  • Singapore Psychological Society
  • AMCHAM Conference, Trinidad & Tobago
  • Step Change in Safety (Aberdeen Scotland) and AOSH (Bristol, England)
  • The International Test Commission, University of Luxembourg

Mosaic Tasks measures all the big 5 personality traits (Conscientiousness; Agreeableness; Emotional Steadiness; Openness to experience and Extraversion) and four associated facets for each trait. We have included responses to some frequently asked questions about Mosaic Tasks at the bottom of the page. However, here is a couple of key aspects about measuring personality and how we have managed them.

1. If you score low on a personality trait, it doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t display that trait. However, it may well mean you don’t display it as often as some other people.

To calculate a score on a personality trait your score is compared against a norm group.  On certain traits (but not all traits) we have found from our research that most people tend to score themselves quite highly.  Examples of such traits include dutifulness, relentless focus and helpfulness. In other words most people largely agree with positively worded statements about these facets.

What this means is, even if you receive a low score on dutifulness (e.g. bottom 20% compared to the norm group), you are probably still dutiful some of the time.

Your Mosaic Tasks report will give you a description of your personality that takes this aspect into account.  A great many people are dutiful to at least some degree, and your feedback will carefully take this into account, even if your score is lower than most people’s.

2. A very high score on a trait is not always desirable and can hold you back.

Some people may believe that a higher score on every trait is always desirable. However, being very high on a trait can also be problematic. For instance if you score very high on caution it may hold you back from doing things. If you are too dutiful you may do things even when you know it is not the best thing to do.

At Mosaic Tasks we recognise this. As an example our cautiousness scale is named ‘Constrained by Caution’. This reflects the fact that very high scores can constrain behaviour. At work (and also outside of work) a very high score can sometimes be counterproductive.

TK presenting in Hong Kong
These 5 triangles represent the big 5 personality traits.

The Key benefits of Mosaic Tasks

self-report

Mixing tasks and self-report

objective tasks

Mosaic Tasks measures personality using a mixture of tasks and a self-report questionnaire. As a result of over 4+ years of research we have developed a personality tool that is able to offer four unique benefits:

Maze game

1. Takes a direct measure of personality (based on the tasks) that is objective and is virtually impossible to fake. People do not know what is being measured.

head in a head

2. Compares a self-report score against the objective tasks score to identify when there is a general over-estimation or under-estimation of personality: a true ‘self-perception’ scale

Triangulation

3. Creates confidence about the accuracy of the assessment information as we use two sources (task and self-report) of information.

Eye

4. Highlights ‘blind spots’ for discussion where the objective score indicates a difference from the self-report score on a particular personality trait.

Screen shot of the coloured shapes game by Mosaic Tasks

“There was less struggle for me with the tasks as opposed to surveys. With surveys I often feel annoyed by not knowing where to rate myself. I find I can act or react differently depending on situations so assigning myself to a box without more context seems more arbitrary than completing a task.”

Mosaic Volunteer

About Mosaic reports

Feel free to download our sample reports that will give you a good understanding of the output and benefits of the Mosaic Personality Tasks approach.

Please press on the links to view our reports in a new window.

Report

Personal Development Report

Based around the big 5 personality traits and 20 underlying facets with competency analysis and tips.

Person holiding a report

Safety Leadership Report

Provides analysis and development tips around 9 Safety Leadership competencies as well as role strengths.

Speech bubbles

Selection Report

Provides analysis and Interview questions around our 12 competencies. Candidate feedback reports are included.

report

The Leadership Report

Provides an analysis of a leader’s competency potential, preferred leadership style and potential leadership derailers.

About Us & Our journey

Mosaic Personality Tasks was developed by three experienced Registered (with the Health Care Professions Council) Occupational Psychologists and associate fellows of the British Psychological Society – Alan Howard, Max Choi and Johnny Mitchell. Together we have 80-years of experience in Occupational Psychology, much of it in psychometrics. We are supported by a team of IT experts and administrative support. We have a growing team of expert suppliers located across the globe.

Why go to the effort?

We embarked on this journey as we believed that there was a better, objective, way to measure personality. Experts (see article here) have warned that the journey to achieving a reliable objective behavioural assessment would not be easy. They were absolutely right.

The challenges of R&D

During our progression from reviewing the initial research to testing and progressing our ideas we have overcome numerous hurdles.  We have now had over 1000 people involved in the research and collected a wide-range of data to test our theory. We are happy to say that our assessments are reliable, valid and truly unique.

About the team

Johnny Mitchell

  • Registered Occupational Psychologist with experience in a variety of Occupational Psychology fields including human factors and training & development.
  • Focus on product development and the fusion between games & psychology.

Alan Howard

  • Registered Occupational Psychologist working mainly in Assessment & Development.
  • Focus on psychometric development innovations. With Max Choi, Alan has co-authored 3 situational judgement tests that have been completed by participants from over 100 countries.

Max Choi

  • Registered Occupational Psychologist working mainly in Assessment & Development.
  • Focus on innovations in psychometric development and global leadership. Max initiated and acted as co-convener for a BPS working group to produce the UK Assessment Centre Standards which were published in 2015.
Screen shot of the mining game by Mosaic Tasks

“With surveys, not that I did, but I find that people are more likely to rate what their ideal option is as opposed to an honest reflection of their personality. So I do not trust self-report survey.”

Mosaic Volunteer

The Mosaic van

Getting in Contact

We are currently offering a bureau service, where we will administer Mosaic Tasks on your behalf or through one of our global suppliers. Please contact us using the details below to discuss your needs and pricing.

Become a partner

If you use personality assessments as part of your work and would like to be a partner of Mosaic Tasks please email us to discuss. We have a growing list of partners all over the world and we would love to hear from you.

Contact details

To contact use please email us on admin@mosaictasks.com. Or subscribe to are email list below to receive notifications of blogs and update from us.

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FAQ

The Mosaic Personality Tasks are a suite of tasks that assess personality. It comprises a self-report personality questionnaire and 7 personality tasks. All these activities are completed online. Each one is relatively short, lasting only a few minutes. Respondents do not need to complete all the tasks in one sitting but can spread the completion of the tasks over several days if they wish.

The approach used by Mosaic Tasks stems from research on objective testing originally completed in the 1950s and has continued since.  Behaviour is captured live as participants complete each task, and scored to produce personality information using algorithms derived from extensive research. Mosaic Tasks are based on a number of these studies but have been adapted for the web and subsequently tested and refined during a 3-year research project. All measures taken are ‘psychologically meaningful’. In other words, they are not accidental relationships found by artificial intelligence but the result of purposeful research.

It is not possible to give specific information about how each personality score is derived, as that could influence how participants approach the tasks. During the tasks thousands of data points are collected. These are based on your pattern of omissions, errors, correct answers, question attempts, problem solving etc. The unique Mosaic Tasks algorithm compares and contrasts these various data points in order to understand specific behaviour on each task. Any one personality measure is not based on only one task but from a range of measures taken across all the tasks.

The tasks are provided as activities for you to accomplish. In fact, there is no right way of accomplishing a task. We are all different so we will all have our preferred ways of tackling the tasks. That is what the tasks are designed to measure. You just do what you do, and we measure everything. The report will show your results as a unique individual.  Therefore, the report does not provide information on whether you have done the tasks well or not.

Self-report personality questionnaires can be very valuable and can work. However, a potential problem with relying on this approach, especially when used to support high stakes recruitment is that candidates can easily fake or massage their responses to better fit the ideal candidate. Another problem is that everyone has blind spots and therefore error will creep in.  The Mosaic approach is to assess personality directly by getting respondents to complete tasks. This is based on research and therefore the results are validated and proven to be effective and accurate.

When a respondent completes the self-report questionnaire honestly and discerningly, then it also provides very useful information and can support the personality task approach. Even when we find that the results from the two approaches do not match up, the results can still be extremely useful.  How you might wonder? Well, the self-report result indicates how the individual sees themselves in terms of their behaviour and personality. Whereas, the task measures their true behaviours.  Therefore, this can highlight blind spots for individuals.

The Mosaic Personality tool has been carefully researched on large samples of people, and is also based on published academic research.  Your personality scores obtained from the “task” and “self-perception” approaches will normally be very similar.  However, in some cases they will be different.

  1. If your scores are different, firstly please look at the introductory section (with the self-perception scale) of your report.  This section describes your general approach to completing the Mosaic self-perception tool.

If you have a high score (9-10) in this section, it means that you tended to rate yourself favourably across the whole of the self-perception task or questionnaire but your actual Mosiac tasks performance did not back this up.  You will likely see in your report a number of personality scales where you have rated yourself more highly than your task performance.  For most of these areas of your report, it is likely that the tasks score (T) is more accurate than your self-perception score (S).

If you have a low score (1 – 2) in this section, it means that you tended to rate yourself less favourably across the whole self-perception task or questionnaire but your actual Mosaic tasks performance was more complementary.  You may have a tendency to be harsh on yourself and overly self-critical.  You will likely see in your report a number of personality scales where you have rated yourself lower than your task performance.  For most of these areas of your report, it is likely that the tasks score (T) is more accurate than your self-perception score (S).

If you have a score in the range of 3 to 8, which is nearly 90% of people, please see the next explanation below.

  1. If your scores are different for a particular personality scale or area, research indicates that the most likely explanation is a blind spot.  This may well be an area of your personality where your self-perception may not be accurate.  It may be out of date or your current situation may have changed you in some way that you were unaware of. It is likely that this is the explanation in the majority of cases.   However, there are other explanations:
  • It is possible that your “tasks” performance simply reflected how you behaved in the moment or on the day you completed the tasks.  This may not be the “normal you”.  Questions you should consider include: Were you fully focused? free of interruptions? did you understand the instructions for each task?
  • It may be that other psychological factors at this time may have affected your performance e.g. tiredness, a stressful situations Etc.

During the task activities no questions are asked. There is no opportunity for a candidate to distort their answers, deliberately or otherwise.  Instead Mosaic captures the real time behavioural reactions of a candidate as they complete each task.  It is very difficult for candidates to fake or distort their behaviour on multiple measures of task performance.  In addition, candidates are not aware of the aspects of personality that are being measured and so are not aware of what to distort.  The aspects of personality being measured are typically not obvious from the content of the tasks themselves.  When asked, participants have normally been unable to correctly identify them.

This is really down to preference, but from the feedback we have it seems so. Mosaic Tasks are designed to be engaging but the priority is to obtain a valid and reliable measure of personality. Therefore, the tasks are not games! In a survey of our volunteers eighty percent of volunteers found Personality Tasks enjoyable or very enjoyable to complete. Sixty percent of volunteers found Personality Questionnaires enjoyable or very enjoyable to complete. Here are some of the comments we received:

“I thought it was much better to complete tasks than answer questions because I always view the question as circumstantial and not a clean answer.”

“There was less struggle for me with the tasks as opposed to surveys. With surveys I often feel annoyed by not knowing where to rate myself. I find I can act or react differently depending on situations so assigning myself to a box without more context seems more arbitrary than completing a task.”

“With surveys, not that I did, but I find that people are more likely to rate what their ideal option is as opposed to an honest reflection of their personality. So I do not trust self-report survey.”

No.  The majority of people we survey after completing Mosaic were aged 45 and over. They were not experienced “gamers” or currently playing computer games on a regular basis.  Nevertheless 80% rated Mosaic tasks as enjoyable or very enjoyable to complete.

Mosaic tasks resemble simple puzzles and challenges rather than fast-moving gameplay, animation or cartoons. They are appropriate for all age groups and backgrounds.

Mosaic Tasks measures all the big 5 personality traits (Conscientiousness; Agreeableness; Emotional Steadiness; Openness to experience and Extraversion) and four associated facets for each trait. Please view our example reports to see what we measure in detail.

These are the reports currently available. Examples from all of these reports can be downloaded from our web-site.

  1. Personal Development Report: Based around the big 5 personality traits and 20 underlying facets with competency analysis and tips.
  2. Selection Report: Provides analysis and interview questions around 12 competencies.
  3. Leadership Report: Provides analysis & development tips using our unique leadership models and leadership competency model.
  4. Safety Leadership report: Provides analysis and development tips around 9 Safety Leadership competencies as well as role strengths.

Contact us (admin@mosaictasks.com) to discuss your requirements.