Feb 05, 2020 10:00 AM EST

Career Choice: Why Your Personality Matters

Young woman suffer split emotions into five different inner personalities
Young woman suffer split emotions into five different inner personalities. Multipolar mental health disorder concept. Schizophrenia psychiatric disease. Face expressions and reactions mood change.
(Photo : Bigstock)

On average, today's employees are expected to change careers about five times in their lifetime.

This process can be expensive, isolating and destabilizing.

While there are many reasons why people seek to change careers, a common one is settling on a career that is grossly misaligned with your personality.

Does your personality matter in career choice? Here is all you need to know about career and personality traits.

Why It Matters

You may have noticed that the marketing team at your organization has similar traits, entertaining, raucous, confident, friendly, and so on. Your accounting team is likely to be more reserved.

At times, an individual's personality draws them to certain careers and not others.

Settling for a career that is not compatible with your personality type often leads to a stressful, unrewarding and unfulfilling work environment.

Identifying Your Personality Type

The first step is to identify your personality type. You can either fit in one category or be a blend of two personality types.

To do this, take a personality test. There are great online resources today that give you results in a matter of hours.

The top tests are Myers-Briggs, the 16 personality factors and Keirsey Temperament Sorters.

It is advantageous to take this test as early on as possible. If you are able to match your personality to certain careers, say in college, you can then align your studies to the career path you ultimately want to take.

Thankfully, most colleges have a career resources center where students can take personality tests.

What are the Key Styles?

While different tests are configured differently, the underlying concepts will remain somewhat the same.

Here are some of the main themes you will get from a personality test.

1. Your Energy

This basically categorizes you as an introvert or an extrovert.

Typically, engineers, statisticians and accountants tend to fall under their introvert umbrella as they love working within smaller groups and doing tasks on their own.

Extroverts, on the other hand, are fueled by people and being around people and tend to thrive as teachers, marketers, entrepreneurs, and so on. Because of their preference to work with people, extroverts are often called people's persons.

2. Your Thinking Style

The two categories here are sensory and intuitive.

If you love regular, standardized tasks at work, your thinking style can be categorized as sensory. Careers whose output requires databases, machines and other structured work processes would be best for you.

On the other hand, intuitive prefer working with theories and exploring different concepts. Engineers and lawyers fall under this category.

3. Your Value System

Here, we have thinkers and feelers.

Thinkers weigh decisions analytically and rely on their intellect to succeed. Feelers are described as warm and empathetic. They weigh their values in decision making and like to treat people fairly and show consideration in all situations.

Great careers for thinkers include engineers, economists and political analysts.

Teachers, social workers, counselors and HR professions would suit feelers rather well.

4. Are you Judging or Perceiving?

Judges like strict guidelines, processes and deadlines. They thrive in surroundings that are well-organized and planned through. Doctors, project managers, stockbrokers, chefs fit in well here.

Perceivers, on the other hand, prefer a more laid back work environment with lax deadlines. If this sounds more like you, consider going into fashion and design, cabin crew, reception work and so on.

Do Not Fret

The truth is that there is no such thing as the perfect job. But that should not scare you.

Using your personality trait and aptitudes to help you choose a career can bring you closer to finding a job you will be comfortable in and one where you can perform your best in.

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