Personality assessment is a process that most individuals engage in throughout their lives (Martin, 1988). Mothers label their children as happy, cranky, or similarly shortly after birth, and often in utero (e.g., active). The musings of Alfred Binet about the personality of his two daughters are typical of observations made by parents. He described Madeleine as silent, cool, and concentrated, while Alice was gay, thoughtless, giddy, and turbulent (Wolf, 1966).
Adolescents are keenly aware of personality evaluation as they carefully consider feedback from their peers to perform their own self-assessments. Personality assessment is also prized by the business community, in which human resources personnel consult with managers and others to gauge the effects of their personality on coworkers and productivity.