We are often faced with many choices when deciding on a job or career. You can use the tests at this site to make your change easier. The two primary tools are the Myers-Briggs® instrument and the Strong Interest Inventory®. Both are useful and they complement each other. The Myers-Briggs test will help you understand how your personality affects your career needs. The Strong report compares your interests to those who have been happily working in their careers for at least three years. Here are some points to keep in mind when using these tests for career searches:
- Consider taking one of the test packages. You'll get a information from several sources, invaluable for making decisions. Click here to go to the Test Packages page. I particularly like the combined report, as you get the benefit of your Strong results being adjusted by your Myers-Briggs type. For example, you might show up as having high interest in being a receptionist on the Strong, but come out as an Introvert on the Myers-Briggs. In such a case, you will not find receptionist on the combined report, as that job is not a good fit for an Introvert.
- Many people use the MBTI® test as a place to start their career search. I believe that's a good idea. The MBTI reports have great worth in showing you why you might be dissatisfied with your current choice, as well as giving suggestions for new careers you could investigate.
- When you take the MBTI instrument, be sure to get the Career Report. This will get you started on learning more about your personality type in the work setting. You will get a list with the 24 most popular and 10 least popular careers for your type. Be sure to read the sample report on the Myers-Briggs Career Test page. The Step II Interpretive report does NOT give specific career advice.
- People sometimes get confused by their Strong results. They will say things like, "I never wanted to be a dentist!" The point is another. It has more to do with the kind of work, the setting, the colleagues, and the responsibilities a person in that position would typically have. If your results show you have similar interests with dentists, you don't have to enroll in dentistry school. More importantly, it shows where your interests lie and where you're likely to be happiest. You would be less likely to be content as a social worker in this example. The Strong is far more complex than it appears at first glance. Study your report carefully.
- I'd also recommend the Strong Career Transition tests to help you get some answers to your questions. The Career Transition test is designed for those who must change careers, for many different reasons. You might have been laid off, or are re-entering the work force, or just want to make a change now. The report shows you where you would best fit in a typical organization of 10 interest areas. Some of those areas are Research and Development, Management, Accounting, and seven others. You might enjoy the field you're now in, but would enjoy it more if you were to move to a different area within the field. As an example, you might enjoy working in finance, but would do even better if you worked in Human Resources in a financial organization. Note that this report does NOT give you specific careers, only interest areas in a typical company. Be sure to read the sample report so you understand how this process can help you.
- It's unlikely that filling out a few questionnaires will tell you everything you need to know about yourself. There are plenty of books on the subject. I'm not a career counselor, but I do have some thoughts on the matter. Basically, I believe most people know inside what would fit them best. Rarely will someone be totally surprised by their Strong or MBTI results. It comes down to believing in yourself and having the courage to do what you know is best for you. It can be hard to do so, especially if your family, background, or culture is against your wishes. I can only suggest you persevere. You are what you are. Sooner or later it will come out. So why not start now?
- Remember, no matter what you decide to do, you have to make it happen. No one can do it for you. No one can take away your responsibility for your choices. It might not be an easy journey. It might take years and many tears. It could also be the most fun you ever had. The jobs must be available too. You cannot work as a nuclear engineer if you live on a small island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, so you must either move someplace else or get whatever job is available where you live.