Myers-Briggs: What you need to know

Myers-briggs what you need to know

What personality type are you?

For some employers, psychometric testing is a useful part of their recruitment process, helping to paint a better picture of a candidate’s personality. Arguably the most popular type of psychometric testing worldwide is known as Myers Briggs.

We’ve already covered the basics of psychometric testing. Here’s a quick rundown of Myers Briggs testing, and some of our top tips to help you prepare:

What is Myers-Briggs?

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment is a psychometric questionnaire, developed by Katherine Cook Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers (and based on the work of Psychologist Carl Jung).

The test includes a number of different questions and is usually multiple choice. It is designed to help identify what type of personality you have, and concludes by profiling you within one of 16 different personas based on your answers to these questions.

More than 2 million people complete Myers-Briggs tests every year, and many as part of the job application process.

Why do employers use Myers-Briggs?

Some employers choose to use Myers-Briggs at the application or interview stage of their hiring process, mainly to determine what kind of personality a potential employee may have.

This may then help ensure that new hires are good fits for a role, and how well they’ll work within a particular team.

They may also use Myers-Briggs to help improve relationships between current staff, or to promote and identify areas for personal development.

What are the different Myers Briggs personality types?

According to Myers-Briggs, there are 16 different personality types.

Which one you are assigned depends upon how you answer certain questions. Questions are generally used to determine how introverted/extroverted a candidate is, how they process information, how they make decisions and the depth of their organisational skills.

Once you have completed a test, you will be presented with four letters which best represent which type you fit within.

Here’s a basic list of the different types of Myers Briggs personality types:

Myers-Briggs personality types

What happens if I don’t agree with my personality type?

Whatever your result, it’s important to bear in mind that your Myers Briggs personality type is just intended as a general indication of your character.

This does not necessarily mean that your behaviour will only fit within that one category. In fact, there may be a number of ways you switch between other personality types.

It’s also important to remember that your result is just a template to help prospective employers get a rough idea about how you’d react in certain situations. In no instance should this be the only factor on which they base their decision.

Are there any drawbacks to Myers Briggs?

There’s a small chance that some employers may take personality types too literally when it comes to interviewing prospective candidates.

Remember that Myers Briggs testing does not measure someone’s suitability for a particular job. Instead, it sets out to determine your preferred ways of thinking and behaving.

It’s important for employers to make this distinction, because personality type will usually only have a limited effect on how well someone is able to perform their role.

Top tips for Myers Briggs

As with most other types of psychometric testing, there are no set correct answers for questions used for MBTI. The recruiter simply wants a better idea of you would behave in certain instances.

However, there are certain things you can do to ensure you get a reliable assessment. With this in mind, here are some of our top tips for Myers Briggs tests:

  • Be honest – There are no right answers, and what might be a desirable response for one employer may not be for another. Do not attempt to predict what the hiring manager wants you to say. Instead, answer honestly, and be yourself.
  • Practice – If you’re worried about the kind of questions you’ll get, there are a number of tests out there to help you prepare. Fill out a few to ease your nerves, that way you won’t be caught out if Myers Briggs comes up.
  • Read the questions thoroughly – To avoid any misunderstandings, always re-read the questions during the assessment.
  • Don’t overthink it – Your Myers Briggs result should not be a deciding factor in whether or not you’re suitable for a role. They help inform an employer how you’d fit into the company, and build a profile of your personality. Spend your time focussing on other areas, rather than worrying about whichever result you may get.

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