When looking for a new job, there are a number of job searching best practices that can help you make the best choice possible. Possibly the most important of these practices is researching the company to gauge their culture and, therefore, how well you may possibly fit with them. However, there is one major tool not enough job seekers are using, one that can drastically improve the process for employee and candidate alike if utilized properly: the personality test.
Reputable personality tests like the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, which assesses personality through four letters determined by the test taker’s answers to behavioral questions, can reveal a lot about a person’s strengths, weaknesses, and skills. In the case of the Myers-Briggs test, a job seeker can more easily determine if they are an extrovert or introvert, whether they rely on sensory input or intuition to come to conclusions, whether they make decisions based on their thoughts or their feelings, and if their opinions are based on judgment or perception. Each of these four categories provide a deeper layer into one’s personality and, therefore, how he or she would hypothetically handle a situation.
This is especially the case with soft skills, which are becoming increasingly in-demand for all levels across industries. For example, if you’re looking for a job and happen to be extroverted, a sales-oriented position may be a great fit for you. If you’re sensory-oriented, you’re likely a great problem solver with the information you’re given and could do well in an analytical field.
Knowing this ahead of time could not only help you determine a strategy for your job search, it can also provide a unique talking point for future interviews when your strengths and weaknesses are called into question, ultimately separating you from other candidates who may have provided more clichéd answers. For instance, a great response to the tricky question of your greatest weakness for a candidate who rates high on the “perceiving” side of perceiving vs. judgment could include something about a tendency to work close to deadlines. Those who rate high on “perceiving” are typically “stimulated by approaching deadlines,” according to the Myers-Briggs site, and therefore sometimes save work until the last minute.
In terms of cultural fit, knowing whether or not these personality factors match up with the professional environment of the company you’re targeting—or of a certain field as a whole—could help you make the right match and avoid any miscalculations. While thinkers are detail-oriented and logical, for example, they may not make the best fit for a situation that requires a certain level of the compassion and communication skills typically associated with feelers.
It also helps to be familiar with and prepared for these tests, as some employers are now requiring candidates to complete such quizzes on-the-spot during interviews. Of course, while none of these areas are directly black or white, they do offer helpful insight that a candidate and employer can work with during the hiring process. However, the Myers-Briggs test, while one of the most reputable, is only one of many personality tests that can do the job—so those looking for a deeper insight into their skills, or who simply want to be prepared for any type of question or testing requirement during an interview, would do well to research and take other accessible tests. One great resource is http://personality-testing.info/, which lists the Myers-Briggs test amongst other reputable quizzes to begin with.