Managing Personality is grounded in the conviction that scientific understanding of personality requires measurement in order to describe phenomena in an objective, systematic fashion and to test theories. Many have argued that science progresses with improvements in instrumentation and methodology. The critical issue in the study of personality is being sure that each concept or theoretical term is measurable, with procedures that can be specified and observed. This book is concerned with tactics and strategies for improving the relationships between ideas and observations.
By contributing to advances in personality measurement, this book seeks to further the science of personality. Fiske is convinced of the importance of developing concepts, variables, and dimensions applicable to all people, rather than the personality of an individual person. Although case studies of personality is necessary for efforts to help individuals in the clinic, finding and measuring common personality attributes is more important to the development of a science of personality.
Managing Personality was written for two groups of people. It is intended to present the status quo to those who want a synthesis of personality measurement as it exists. Such people may have some general interest in the field or may be interested in it because they intend to work in such related areas as clinical practice. The second audience includes students of personality who are concerned with evaluating the measurement of personality, and especially people who are conducting such research or are preparing themselves for such work.