The Dark Side of Personality

The Hogan Development Survey (HDS) describes the dark side of personality – qualities that emerge in times of increased strain and can disrupt relationships, damage reputations, and derail peoples’ chances of success. By assessing dark-side personality, you can recognize and mitigate performance risks before they become a problem.


The HDS measures dark side personality along 11 scales. The following describe high scorers:

  • Excitable: moody, hard to please, and emotionally volatile
  • Skeptical: suspicious, sensitive to criticism, and expecting betrayal
  • Cautious: risk averse, resistant to change, and slow to make decisions
  • Reserved: aloof, uncommunicative, and indifferent to the feelings of others
  • Leisurely: overtly cooperative, but privately irritable, stubborn, and uncooperative
  • Bold: overly self-confident, arrogant, and entitled
  • Mischievous: charming, risk-taking, and excitement-seeking
  • Colorful: dramatic, attention-seeking, and interruptive
  • Imaginative: creative, but thinking and acting in unusual or eccentric ways
  • Diligent: meticulous, precise, hard to please, and micromanaging
  • Dutiful: eager to please and reluctant to act independently or against popular opinion

HDS Subscales

Introduced in 1997, the Hogan Development Survey (HDS) was the first personality assessment to identify 11 dark-side characteristics and provide participants the strategic self-awareness they needed to avoid letting the dark side take control. Now, Hogan is pleased to introduce the new HDS subscales, an added layer of depth that allows participants and coaches to pinpoint where the dark side is most likely to emerge.

HDS Sample Reports


The HDS identifies the dark-side personality characteristics that can erode relationships and derail people’s chances of success, making it a powerful tool that can be used throughout the employee lifecycle.

  • Selection: Selection reports fueled by the HDS inject valuable insight into the hiring process, from measuring candidates’ overall desirability to highlighting specific areas of strengths and weaknesses.
  • Development: Our HDS-driven development reports offer actionable management and development suggestions to help you guide your employees’ careers.
  • Leadership: Self-awareness is one of the hallmarks of great leadership. Give your leaders the tools they need to understand their strengths and weaknesses, and how they compare to those of their peers.

Looking for Hogan reports?
Check out the list of available reports below.