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How Would Santa Claus Perform in a Talent Measurement Test?

Santa Claus is a beloved figure the world over, so for the holiday season the team at Talegent thought we’d answer the question that everyone has been asking – what would Santa’s results show on a psychometric test? According to our resident Psychometrician (with a little help from the statistics from the Department of Justice), about 1% of children would be naughty enough to be added to Santa’s naughty list, so we’ve ruled out these bad eggs in our calculations.  Here’s what we found…

  • Conscientiousness: In order to coordinate the construction and delivery of presents to every child in the world, Santa would require extraordinary planning ability. A skill which is predicted by conscientiousness. Highly conscientious people are highly efficient and organised, perfect for coordinating overnight delivery to the nearly 1.8 billion children on earth (and all without charging an extra fee for express delivery!)
  • Drive for results: In order to get presents to the nearly 1.8 billion children on Earth, Santa would have to deliver presents to nearly 20 thousand children every second For comparison, a UPS driver will typically make about 120 deliveries per day. Clearly, Santa has a drive for results which must be unmatched in order to achieve these kinds of delivery times.
  • Emotional Intelligence: From descriptions of Saint Nick, we can predict that he would likely score extremely highly on emotional intelligence (EQ). Those who are high on EQ are empathetic, warm, and possess the excellent interpersonal skills required to manage a staff of hundreds of thousands of elves. Further, the lengths Santa goes to appease the children of the world at the cost to his own wellbeing suggests extraordinarily high emotional intelligence (he drinks 500,000,000 litres of milk over Christmas night, equivalent to 200 Olympic pools, presumably at significant bodily harm to himself).
  • Spatial reasoning: Assuming the average present has dimensions of 10cm by 10cm by 10cm, and Santa delivers presents to the nearly 1.8 billion nice children in the world. He would require a sack that was nearly 122 metres a side (assuming 1kg per present, the sack would also weigh as much as 15 million reindeer). Of course, these presents won’t be of uniform size, so they would need to be packed pretty carefully to fit in the sack to maximise efficiency. This suggests that Santa Claus has the spatial reasoning skills to optimise the packing of nearly 1.8 billion gifts. An astonishing feat.
  • Excellent analytical skills: “He knows when you’ve been sleeping, he knows when you’re awake. He knows when you’ve been bad or good…” But how does Santa keep track of this immense amount of information? It’s possible he uses Big Data. Big Data takes the enormous wealth of data which the human race now produces and can use it to predict some surprising conclusions. For example, Santa could look at the data on when Facebook status updates were made and use it to statistically model when children are likely to be asleep. Or look at the amount of swearwords used or crimes publicly admitted to in order to determine niceness or naughtiness.

Psychometric assessment and talent measurement has given us access to an extraordinary wealth of information on employees before they ever walk through the door. One imagines that Santa himself has implemented a similar talent measurement system for the recruitment of elves. And given the effectiveness of Santa’s operation, if it’s good enough for him, it’s probably good enough to use in your hiring as well.

1 Comment
  • Simon Cowles
    Posted at 22:54h, 24 December Reply

    Brilliant analysis team!! If we were ever undertaking a recruitment assignment for a replacement for his current role, I think every recruitment company would fail to obtain a shortlist of one! Thank goodness he never dies. I also like the way he always comes back for more punishment; very high on perseverence. Keeping in touch with his Facebook friends would be challenging, but I guess he’s got 364 days to do that!

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