My friend had this image on my screen when his youngest son Joshua asked “Is that Dr. Who’s box”.

The AA Box

Quite Different to Dr. Who’s Box

He explained to him that when daddy was a child (in the 1960s!) motorists aspired to have a key to the various “Automobile Association (AA) Boxes” up and down the UK – just in case they broke down and needed to ring for help.

Why go in a box? Why not use their iPhone?” he innocently inquired.

He explained that these AA boxes were useful in a bygone age, before technology gave us the iPhone. How else could you make a call when stuck by the roadside, when there were no mobile phones?

That got me thinking – it’s a bit like the fad for personality typing that was also popular in the 1960s – putting people in metaphorical boxes and labelling them. This seemed like the only way most organisations wanted to look at personality back then. The trouble was, people felt stereotyped and pigeon holed.

Putting People in Boxes



Just as our smart phones enable us to uniquely personalise our communications, we now have the technology to look at our personalities in a highly personalised way – without the need to put people in boxes. Tools that do not say you are “this” or “that”, but actually describe you as you really are. In the world there are just shy of 7 billion human beings – but there will never be another you.

The reality is that today we don’t need to be subjected to the humiliation of being typed; there is no need to utilise an out-dated methodology that insists you and your people must fit into a box.

I sincerely believe that personality models have always helped to shed light on who you are, and this brings true understanding to yourself and others. Now it is possible to use a model that really measures who you are and not who others want you to be. As I get deep in to this topic I am shocked by how many of the popular personality assessments, publicised by some of the world most respected businesses, lack statistical “validity” or psychological integrity. Sure, when the only thing that was around was a pay phone, then you can’t be criticised for wanting to get into a box, or encourage people to use them. However when there are now smart phones that know where you are, why would you need to walk for miles, to use a box?

Lumina Spark is much more smart phone than pay phone. Consultants, trainers, users and reviewers like it because it’s simple, effective and has deep integrity. Many just like it because it makes sense and makes a difference to individuals and teams.

To find out more about thinking outside of the box, click here.