How Career Testing Can Help You

Posted on April 26, 2011


Do you know how much your personality type matters in career testing? There are so many different industries and career paths to choose from, determining your aptitude for certain tasks really helps narrow your search. However, while you’re thinking so hard about what you’re good at, don’t forget to consider your personality type.

We all know that certain positions and industries suit particular personality types better than others. While your skills, education and abilities go a long way toward determining an appropriate field for you, they don’t tell the whole story–you can be very “good” at something that isn’t ultimately a good fit. Consider yourself as a whole package when choosing a career.Testing your personality can lead to surprising insights and sometimes, unexpected career possibilities!

An important part of career testing involves personality typing, a measurement of your personal traits, motivation, attitudes and needs in the workplace. One of the most popular tools is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), a personality inventory that many people–job hunters and employers alike–use for making career and hiring decisions.

The MBTI is based on the psychological theories of Carl Jung’s and developed by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers. The test identifies crucial preferences that categorize indivuals by personality. Their preferred methods of doing work and other activities indicate personality characteristics that remain surprisingly constant over an individual’s lifetime, giving us a powerful tool for career testing.

The Four Preferences

Extroversion v. Introversion. How an individual “energizes.”
Sensing v. Intuition. The way a person perceives information.
Thinking v. Feeling. A person’s decision-making process.
Judging v. Perceiving How a personal lives his or her life.
In career testing reports, eight letters represent each preference. The four preferences chosen by the person make up his or her personality type. There are 16 distinct combinations possible.

The sixteen possible personality types are unique. The four preferences that determine your personality interact with each other so that you’re more than just the sum of four aspects. Each type is essentially equal in value, as each has important predicted strengths and weaknesses. Some types are naturally suited to certain roles that other types would struggle to fill. Certain work environments are a better fit for different types, and the types themselves interact to create different kinds of working relationships. This kind of career testing can go a long way toward optimizing your work style, as understanding your personality type can give you a clear idea of what you need from and offer to others.

When you take the MBTI test, you’ll receive a report containing your personal four-letter code and an extensive description of your type. A list of common and popular career choices will probably also be provided, and also ideas for what you might avoid. While each of the four preferences are crucial in determining your personality, the middle two are the most important when choosing a career. They determine how you perceive information and how you make decisions, two aspects which are very central to career testing.

Employment Digest