291: The Briggs & Stratton Personality Type Indicator

Most personality psychologists regard the MBTI as little more than an elaborate Chinese fortune cookie. -Robert Hogan

 

In 1917 Katherine Cook Briggs become fascinated by the subject of personality traits. She devoted much of the rest of her life to the study and theorization of personalities. Eventually she was joined in her studies by her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers, the writer of an acclaimed murder mystery which is supposed to have won a prize. Isabel would go on to develop the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, initially using it to determine the appropriate place of employment for women entering the work force during World War II.

I know absolutely nothing about the MBTI, but I did read the article about it on Wikipedia. Personally, I am much more familiar with Briggs & Stratton.

Briggs & Stratton, if you are not aware, is a manufacturer of small engines which are often used to power lawnmowers. In my teenage years these engines were the muse for my creative impulses. In a fit of inspiration I once theorized that the valve system on a Briggs & Stratton was very similar to the valve system used on old steam locomotives. I was overtaken by the sheer brilliance of converting a broken down push mower into a lean, mean steam powered mowing machine.

In my experience the fact that fires can be started with magnifying glasses is hardwired into the brain of every male over the age of five. Using this knowledge as my base, I concluded, in a brilliant leap of scientific reasoning, that the power of the sun could be harnessed to turn water into steam, thereby solving all of the global problems related to the human consumption of energy.

I must sadly report that I was never able to fully complete the development of this groundbreaking technology. If you find yourself inspired to carry on the great work which I began in my younger years I would humbly encourage you to drain the gas tank of your beloved Briggs & Stratton before you commence. Should you, like me, fail to follow this step it is quite likely that you will see your dreams of an international revolution in energy production go up in, very literal, flames.

My attempts at creating a front wheel drive bike with which I would summit Mt. Everest were much more successful. Although I have never set foot on the Eurasian continent I did manage to reverse the drive mechanism on a bicycle, which I then proceeded to ride backwards.

Back to Briggs & Stratton: it occurs to me that a lot can be said about a person based on their reaction to broken Briggs & Stratton engines. The Briggs & Stratton Personality Type Indicator (Which can alternately be referred to as the BS Type Indicator or BSTI) is a useful tool for predicting the personalities of yourself and those around you.

Here are the four Briggs & Stratton personality types

  • Thrower: you dispose of the engine because you don’t like junk laying around.
  • Creator: You find a creative way to recycle the engine, such as turning it into a solar powered steam engine.
  • Fixer: You attempt to restore the engine to its original state.
  • Hoarder: you maintain possession of the engine, firmly believing that a broken lawn mower engine will one day come in extremely handy.

You may find it difficult to place yourself into one of these four camps, but the benefits of discovering your BS personality type are too numerous to count. I cordially invite you to break out a fortune cookie and ponder your place on the Briggs & Stratton personality scale.


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19 thoughts on “291: The Briggs & Stratton Personality Type Indicator

  1. At least you didnt endlessly ramble about “Functions” in Myers-Briggs, which is 80% BS due to severe over-amplification.

    People should Read:
    Gifts Differing — which does mention functions, but briefly, almost in passing. And this is a “Briggs-book”.
    Also read “Type Talk” by Kroeger & Theussen. Are functions even talked about at all? Too many people try to re-invent Myers-Briggs. They get away with it because 95% of the dumb-asses in the “audience” dont bother to read the books. They just suck up to 150 videos/blogs about Functions.

    I guess that makes me a “Fixer”. I’m OK with that.

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