The Apter Motivational Style Profile® (AMSP®) is one of the most significant psychological instruments to have emerged in the last forty years. This instrument provides insight into the relative importance of different motivations in an individual’s life and indicates where the individual might need to change to become both more effective individually and as part of a team.
The AMSP is based on Reversal Theory, which emphasizes changeability and inconsistency of behavior. It comes out of the research of Professor Michael J. Apter, Ph.D., one of the world’s leading psychologists based at Georgetown University.
Flying in the face of conventional trait theories that attempt to identify who you are by measuring the amount and consistency of your behavior, Reversal Theory focuses on your inconsistency and what spurs reversals from one psychological state to another. For the last thirty years clinicians and researchers from around the world have been testing, and writing about Reversal Theory, including over 14 books and 300 research papers.
Reversal Theory holds that there are eight psychological states in each of us, four of which are active at a given time. Each state is driven by certain motives and enables specific emotions, for example the drive for achievement, the motive of freedom, or the pursuit of individual excellence. Likewise, anger, anxiety, relaxation and pleasure are emotions that come from particular states – or a specific combination of states.
Knowing what states are typically more dominant in yourself and what domains are more prominent at any given time empowers you to get a better handle on your motives, your emotions and how you can dramatically change your behavior to better suit a situation. These personal insights and a developed skill-set around them greatly benefit your ability to lead, perform, influence change, and contribute to teams.