Study Guide for the Leadership Assessment Test: with Tips
Updated November 20, 2023
- What Is a Leadership Assessment Test?
- Types of Leadership Assessment Test
- What Are Some Common Leadership Tests?
- Example Leadership Test Questions
- How to Prepare for a Leadership Assessment Test
- Tips for Taking a Leadership Test
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
- How do you typically handle feedback from your team members or colleagues?
- When faced with a challenge or setback, what is your initial reaction?
- How do you motivate and inspire your team to achieve their goals?
- In your leadership role, how do you typically approach decision-making?
- How do you handle conflicts or disagreements among team members?
- When it comes to delegation, how do you assign tasks to your team members?
- How do you foster diversity and inclusion in your team or organization?
- How do you handle challenging or underperforming team members?
If you’re aspiring to a leadership role or have been tasked with a leadership position, chances are you may encounter a leadership assessment test as part of the selection or development process.
This article looks at the main types of leadership assessment test and what each one measures, as well as offers guidance on how best to prepare should you be asked to take a leadership test of your own.
A leadership assessment test is a tool used to evaluate an individual's leadership skills, abilities and potential.
Typically administered in a formal or structured manner, leadership assessment tests are designed to measure various dimensions of leadership, such as communication, decision-making, strategic thinking, adaptability, empathy, influence and teamwork.
You may also hear this type of tool referred to as a leadership strengths test or a leadership profile assessment.
A leadership assessment test can be used for a number of purposes. The most common use cases include:
Hiring – Employers use leadership assessment tests during the selection process to identify candidates with leadership potential who are suitable for leadership roles within the organization.
Promotions – A leadership assessment test may be used to evaluate employees who are being considered for promotions or advancements within the company. These tests help organizations identify individuals who have the potential to take on higher levels of responsibility and effectively lead teams.
Development programs – Leadership assessment tests are often used in leadership development programs to assess participants’ strengths and areas for improvement. The results of these tests can be used to customize leadership training and development plans.
These assessments come in various forms, but generally speaking, they can be classified as one of three types:
- A leadership personality test
- A situational judgment test
- A leadership style test
A leadership personality test is designed to assess the personality traits and characteristics associated with effective leadership.
This type of assessment typically involves answering questions that measure various personality dimensions, such as:
- Emotional intelligence
- Openness to experience
These tests may also evaluate specific leadership-related traits such as:
- Risk-taking propensity
The results of a leadership personality assessment can provide insights into an individual's natural leadership tendencies, strengths and areas for development.
For example, a high score in extraversion may indicate that the person is outgoing and assertive, which could be beneficial in leading teams or motivating others.
On the other hand, a low score in conscientiousness may suggest that the person struggles with organizational skills or attention to detail, which may impact their effectiveness as a leader.
A situational judgment test (SJT) is designed to measure an individual's ability to make effective decisions when faced with various leadership problems.
SJTs typically present participants with realistic workplace scenarios and ask them to choose the most appropriate course of action from a set of options.
These scenarios may involve ethical dilemmas, conflict resolution, team management, decision-making and other leadership-related situations.
SJT questions aim to measure how well an individual can apply their leadership knowledge, skills and experience in a real-world context.
A leadership style test is designed to assess an individual's preferred approach to leadership and management.
These tests measure behaviors, attitudes and values, and categorize them into different leadership styles or approaches.
Common leadership styles that may be assessed include autocratic, democratic, transformational, transactional, servant and laissez-faire.
A leadership style test typically involves a self-assessment questionnaire or scenarios that ask the test taker to choose how they would respond in different leadership situations.
The results of a leadership style test can provide insights into an individual's leadership preferences, strengths and areas for development.
As well as the multiple types of leadership test, there are also various publishers, each with its own library of assessments.
Some popular publishers include:
Korn Ferry offers several leadership assessments to evaluate an individual's leadership potential and competencies. These assessments include:
- Korn Ferry Assessment of Leadership Potential (KFALP) – This assesses an individual's leadership potential and identifies strengths, weaknesses and areas for development.
- Korn Ferry Four-Dimensional (KF4D) Executive Assessment – This measures an individual's executive competencies in various dimensions.
- Korn Ferry viaEdge – This is a self-administered personality assessment that focuses on leadership and learning agility.
Hogan offers a series of assessments to evaluate an individual's personality, behavioral tendencies, motives, values, preferences and cognitive abilities. These assessments include:
Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI) – This assesses an individual's personality traits related to work behaviors.
Hogan Business Reasoning Inventory (HBRI) – This measures an individual's cognitive abilities related to business reasoning.
Hogan Development Survey (HDS) – This measures an individual's potential derailment risks and problematic behavioral tendencies.
Hogan Motives, Values, Preferences Inventory (MVPI) – This assesses an individual's motives, values and preferences related to work and organizational settings.
DDI offers a series of assessments to evaluate an individual's leadership skills, competencies and development needs. These assessments include:
Leadership Insight Inventory (LII) – Here key competencies and attributes are assessed such as abstract thinking and time management.
Leadership Readiness Assessment (LRA) – This test assesses the test takers' typical behaviors and how they affect their job skills.
Manager Ready Assessment – This situational judgment test (SJT) poses a number of realistic leadership scenarios.
Leader3 Ready (L3R) – This assesses mid-level leaders who aspire to advance to higher managerial positions.
Below you’ll find two sample questions for each type of leadership assessment test you might encounter.
There are no right or wrong answers to these questions. It all comes down to your individual working style and behaviors.
1. How do you typically handle feedback from your team members or colleagues?
a) Take feedback graciously, reflect on it and make changes accordingly
b) Appreciate feedback but tend to justify your actions or decisions
c) Disregard feedback that you do not agree with or find unnecessary
d) Feel defensive and respond emotionally to negative feedback
2. When faced with a challenge or setback, what is your initial reaction?
a) Remain calm and composed, analyze the situation and develop a plan to overcome it
b) Feel discouraged or frustrated, but quickly regroup and focus on finding solutions
c) Blame external factors or other team members for the setback
d) Become overwhelmed, stressed or anxious, and struggle to come up with a solution
1. You have just been promoted to a leadership position and are tasked with leading a team that has low morale and productivity.
What is your first course of action?
a) Clearly communicate expectations and goals, and motivate the team with positive reinforcement
b) Conduct one-on-one meetings to understand the concerns of each team member and address them
c) Implement strict performance measures and consequences for underperforming team members
d) Reassign team members to different roles or departments to address the low morale issue
2. Your team is working on an important project with a tight deadline, and you notice that one team member is struggling to keep up with the workload.
What do you do?
a) Provide additional support and resources to help the team member catch up
b) Reassign some of the workload from the struggling team member to other team members
c) Hold a meeting with the team member to discuss the performance issues and set clear expectations
d) Ignore the issue and hope that the team member catches up on their own
1. In your leadership role, how do you typically approach decision-making?
a) Authoritative: Make decisions independently and communicate them to the team with confidence
b) Collaborative: Involve team members in the decision-making process and consider their input
c) Democratic: Facilitate discussions and seek consensus among team members before making a decision
d) Delegative: Delegate decision-making authority to team members and trust them to make informed choices
2. How do you motivate and inspire your team to achieve their goals?
a) Visionary: Articulate a compelling vision and inspire team members to work towards it
b) Supportive: Build relationships, provide encouragement and recognize team members' efforts
c) Goal-oriented: Set clear performance goals and provide rewards or incentives for achieving them
d) Empowering: Delegate tasks and decision-making authority, and trust team members to take ownership of their work
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How to Prepare for a Leadership Assessment Test
Research and gather as much information as possible about the specific leadership assessment test you’ll be taking.
The objective here is to understand its purpose, format and requirements. This may include knowing the duration of the test, the types of questions involved and any specific instructions.
Review any sample or practice tests that may be available online to familiarize yourself with the test format and content. This will help you understand the types of questions you may encounter during the actual test and enable you to prepare accordingly.
Research and identify the qualities that are commonly associated with great leaders, such as:
- Effective communication skills
- Decision-making and problem-solving
- Vision and foresight
- Ability to inspire and motivate others
- Ability to build and maintain relationships
- Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
- Accountability and responsibility
- Ability to inspire trust and build credibility
Reflect on your own experiences and achievements to identify instances where you have demonstrated these qualities. This will help you highlight your strengths during the assessment.
You might also consider seeking feedback from colleagues, mentors or supervisors to gain an outside perspective on your leadership skills.
Look for resources that offer practice tests specifically designed for leadership assessments. You’ll find plenty of these online, like the leadership assessment practice test available on JobTestPrep.
Practice under timed conditions to simulate the actual test environment and improve your time management skills.
Review your performance and learn from any mistakes you may have made. Pay attention to the feedback provided by the practice tests and work on areas where you may need improvement.
Research and understand the leadership style and values promoted by the company or organization where you’ll be taking the assessment.
This may include reviewing the company's mission, vision and values, as well as any leadership competencies or frameworks it may have in place.
Consider how your own leadership style aligns with these and take this understanding with you into your leadership assessment test.
Alongside effective preparation, there are also some tips and techniques you can use to improve performance in your leadership assessment test:
Be thorough – Take your time to read each question and instruction carefully, and understand what’s being asked before selecting your response.
Look for clues – Focus on the main point or purpose of each question and identify the key skills that are being measured. Pay attention to details, such as specific scenarios or context, as they may influence your answer.
Think about the ideal responses (but be honest) – Consider the qualities and behaviors associated with effective leadership and aim to select responses that align with these. At the same time, avoid guessing or selecting responses based on what you think the test is looking for. Go with your genuine thoughts and beliefs about leadership.
Keep track of time – If the assessment is timed, pace yourself to ensure you have enough time to read and answer all the questions. Avoid spending too much time on one question, as it may impact your ability to complete the entire test.
A leadership assessment test is a tool used by organizations to evaluate an individual's leadership potential.
It typically consists of a series of questions designed to assess various aspects of leadership, such as personality traits, cognitive abilities, emotional intelligence, decision-making, communication and problem-solving skills.
A leadership test can be used to identify and evaluate potential leaders, as well as to develop and promote existing leaders within an organization.
Common use cases include recruitment, succession planning and leadership development programs.
A leadership test is not designed with a pass or fail threshold. Instead, these assessments are used to provide insights into an individual's leadership strengths and areas for improvement.
They do however vary in difficulty, with some being more challenging than others.
How hard an individual finds a leadership test will depend on various factors, including knowledge, skills, experience and preparation, as well as its specific content and format.
The best way to prepare for your leadership assessment is to take a leadership assessment practice test. There are various online resources and websites that offer these, such as JobTestPrep.
These resources typically include sample questions and practice exams, allowing individuals to familiarize themselves with the test format and content.
The purpose of a leadership assessment test is to evaluate the leadership potential, skills and competencies of individuals in a structured and standardized manner.
These tests are designed to provide insights into the abilities and strengths associated with strong leadership, and to identify areas for improvement.
The results of a leadership assessment test can be used by organizations for various purposes, such as identifying and selecting candidates for leadership roles, providing feedback for leadership development programs and assessing leadership performance in the workplace.
To pass a leadership assessment test, you need to be well-prepared and strategic. Take time to understand the test format, practice online tests and reflect on your strengths and weaknesses.
During the test remember to manage your time wisely, remain calm and trust your knowledge and judgment.
Effective leaders possess a combination of skills that can be categorized into different types, such as strategic thinking, relationship building, emotional intelligence, coaching and mentoring, change management, resilience and adaptability.
Within these skill categories sit a wide range of competencies, like the ability to inspire and motivate others, analyze complex situations, communicate effectively and make informed decisions.
To develop these skills you may consider taking a leadership psychometric test of your own to identify strengths and areas for improvement.
There are several sources where you can find sample leadership test questions including online resources, test prep materials from assessment providers, assessment books, coaching or training programs and professional networking groups or forums.
These sources can provide you with practice tests, sample questions and study materials to help you prepare. You can also use the free leadership assessment test questions in this article.
Yes, leadership assessment tests can be timed depending on the specific test and assessment provider. Some leadership assessment tests may have time limits for completing the test overall, while others may set limits per question.
The time limits are typically there to assess how well candidates perform under pressure, which can be reflective of real-world leadership situations where quick decision-making and prioritization are important.
A good score on a leadership assessment test is generally considered to be one that demonstrates a strong alignment with the leadership competencies or qualities being assessed.
However, what is considered a good score may vary depending on the specific assessment and the expectations of the organization or role for which the assessment is being conducted.
It's important to keep in mind that leadership assessments are not necessarily about achieving a specific score, but rather understanding your abilities, strengths and overall potential as a leader.
The retake policy for leadership assessment tests varies and can be influenced by factors like the purpose of the assessment, the type of test and the specific requirements of the organization or role for which the assessment is being conducted.
Some leadership assessment tests may allow retakes after a certain period of time, typically with a limit on the number of retakes allowed.
This may be done to allow candidates an opportunity to improve their performance or address areas of development identified through the initial assessment.
The purpose of a leadership assessment is often to provide feedback and insights for personal and professional growth, rather than a binary pass/fail outcome, so if your performance is perceived to be below the desired level or benchmark, it does not necessarily mean that you have failed.
When you receive feedback from a leadership assessment test, use it to identify your strengths and weaknesses as a leader and take steps to enhance your skills through learning, training and development opportunities.
JobTestPrep offers comprehensive preparation materials specifically designed for leadership assessment tests.
These materials include practice tests and other resources that can help you develop the skills and knowledge needed for leadership assessments.
A leadership assessment test is a valuable tool for organizations looking to evaluate leadership potential.
If you're asked to take a leadership assessment, remember to thoroughly understand the test format, review relevant leadership concepts and practice with sample questions.
Keep in mind too that the assessment is not only about the result but also about self-reflection and learning. Take the opportunity to reflect on your strengths and areas for improvement and use the feedback from the assessment as a tool for growth.