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Seb Anthony

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Alternatives to Belbin?


I am looking for a self scorable instrument to use with groups and individuals around team roles and team behaviours that isn't Belbin. Anyone any ideas or suggestions?
Sue Chew

7 Responses

  1. Try SDI
    Hi Sue,

    Why not try the SDI – Strength Deployment Inventory.

    You can find out the details via Personal Strengths Publishing who are based in Peterborough I seem to remember.

    To my mind its better than Belbin, it has a simplicity and clarity that I find compelling.



  2. Alternative to Belbin
    Hi Sue,

    I have found the Insights tool to be an accurate and very valuable instrument to use with groups and individuals around team roles. You can find out more about this at and you should contact Andi Lothian who is their MD if you want to discuss it. Please feel free to mention my name to Andi if you contact him.


    [email protected]
    0788 079 0815

  3. TMS

    Another is TMS Development International . Which is based upon the Margerison-Mccann system.

    Not a recommendation as such but rather another in this field that springs to mind.

  4. What is Better?
    Just to play Devil’s advocate – in what way is SDI better than say Belbin? Is it in the simplicity of the model as first presented (it may ultimately be more complex when the dynamics of the various dimensions are further investigated). We mustn’t forget the context and application – if simplicity is necessary, then one model may be more appropriate than another. I use MBTI alot, and although it ‘only’ has four dimensions, it’s only when you get in to the dynamics between each dimension that you get some really rich insights in to people and teams. TMS, which I also use, is similar. Belbin is not, but then it is fundamentally different in its approach and what it is trying to do. In my experience I have often found that it is not the model that is important – it’s the realisation that people are different, and in different roles are effective (or not!) in different ways. From this insight one can begin to develop people and teams with more effect.

  5. belbin
    We have also been using Insights for approx 4 years. It is based on Carl Jung and is quick and simple to use, but provides a full document which covers strengths, possible weaknesses, what the person brings to the team etc.

  6. Try TMS
    We have tended towards the TMS instrument as a more useful source of learning for people in action learning sets on our m@sterclass and f@sterclass programmes.

    It’s an interesting question to ask ourselves what’s wrong with Belbin given so many people speak the language. Are we always looking for something new to entertain? Do we suspect Belbin doesn’t actually work? Do we know if having the right Belbin mix actually makes a difference in real life? Do we just use it because we’ve got an old photocopied version that we don’t have to pay for?

    1500 words – discuss

    Clive Hook
    Clearworth – a class apart

  7. Be careful

    Having an old photocopy of for instance the Belbin Self Perception Inventory that you use is a very dangerous activity.

    Do not underestimate the reach or the intent of the solicitors that protect the interests of Dr Belbin and his son Nigel.

    Maybe we all need to be a little more aware of the lengths to which those that possess rights over well known and used tools will go to maintain control and revenue streams.

    So…advance with caution is my advice.


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