Our personality shapes us and defines how we interact with the world, so it’s no wonder that a mismatch between your personality and your job could severely impact your wellbeing – and potentially derail your dream career path.

But did you know there are 16 personalities as outlined by the Myers Briggs test? Finding out which one you are could help you carve out your perfect career, too.

Read on to find out how to make it happen…

Are there really just 16 personalities in the world?

Our personality is just one area that guides our behaviour throughout life, the Myers Briggs personality test, although widely used by many HE and hiring teams, isn’t set in stone. People have characteristics and attributes from a broad number of influences.

Psychologist Kirsten Godfrey told The Independent that your personality is a “relatively stable set of patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviours” which reach a “peak of stability following adolescence and into early-mid twenties”. She continued; “by the time you’re thirty your personality has fully formed.” (Yikes, so we’ve only got a few more years until our moody nature is something we’re stuck with…forever then).

The 16 personalities theory was based on a model designed by Katharine Cook Briggs and her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers, which was then made famous by psychological research performed by Carl Jung in the 1920s.

The test is based on questions that gather information on how a person usually responds to certain situations.

And when it comes to your job, knowing which one of 16 personalities you are can help you find your dream career. Remember it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be tied to a certain job forever, or earning a set amount because of your particular personality type. Rather, it can help you understand what job is best suited to your individual needs and traits.



Why your personality could affect your salary

According to a 2017 study from Denissen of Tilburg University, an employee who has matched their personality traits to their dream job is more likely to earn a higher salary than an employee who hasn’t taken that into consideration.

A quote from the study stated: “Individuals can earn additional income of more than their monthly salary per year if they hold a job that fits their personality…economic success depends not only on having a ‘successful personality’ but also, in part, on finding the best niche for one’s personality.”

This study debunks the idea that there are personality types that are more successful than others, and is good news for just about everyone who thought they might be stuck in the same job, earning the same amount for ages. Hurrah!

Scientists in the study found that when it comes to these traits – extraversion, agreeableness, and openness to experience – a closer match between an employee’s personality and the demands of their career was linked with a higher income.

They also found that those who were more agreeable, more conscientious, or more open to experiences than their jobs required, actually earned less than those who had just the right amount for their career.

Finding out your personality type

If you’re curious about whether you’re working in the right area for your personality, try a test! According to the most widely accepted analysis of personality, the Myers Briggs test, most of us fit into clusters of 16 personalities. The test rates you broadly on eight characteristics:

  • Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I)
  • Sensing (S) or Intuitive (N)
  • Feeling (F) or Thinking (T)
  • Judging (J) or Perceiving (P)

A Myers Briggs test will show you how your emotions and behaviours can shape and be defined by a variety of situations in your personal life and career. And in many cases, employers use them to find out what sort of work style their employees are suited to.


The interaction between the eight preferences is what makes each personality type unique.  So, once you’ve done your test, take a look at the below from The Balance Careers who have summarised what each personality type is all about.

The 16 personalities:

  • ISTJ: ISTJs are independent, responsible, and focused.
  • ISFJ: ISFJs’ positive qualities are optimism and love of adventure, but they can also be a bit disorganized and impulsive.
  • INFJ: Compassion and creativity are hallmarks of the INFJ personality type.
  • INTJ: A preference for innovation causes INTJs to continually want to improve themselves and others. They are independent.
  • ISTP: ISTPs like sitting back and observing from afar. They tend to be quiet and enjoy taking risks.
  • ISFP: Preferring to stay on the sidelines, ISFPs are quiet and easygoing. They like taking life day-by-day.
  • INFP: INFPs have easygoing demeanors unless they sense someone is violating one of their core values. They are very private and share their thoughts with few people.
  • INTP: INTPs are independent but not self-focused. They strive to understand the world around them.
  • ESTP: Energetic and eager to be around others, ESTPs are also full of confidence and can be quite assertive.
  • ESFP: ESFPs value their relationships. They are generous and love life.
  • ENFP: ENFPs are outgoing and enthusiastic. They sometimes have trouble staying focused.
  • ENTP: Innovative and resourceful, ENTPs love solving problems, no matter how challenging they are.
  • ESTJ: If you want an opinion on just about anything, ask an ESTJ. They are excellent decision makers who love having responsibilities.
  • ESFJ: ESFJs prefer to connect with others. They are rule followers and want everyone to be, as well.
  • ENFJ: Their concern for the well-being of others and strong communication skills, make them excellent leaders.
  • ENTJ: ENTJs know how to get things done and are great at getting other people to follow along. They are very energetic.

Matching your personality to your career

Now, take a look at the infographics from Truity, who have matched these 16 personalities types to ideal careers below.

Is there a personality type for your career


Screen Shot 2018-08-23 at 13.33.11

So which one are you?!

Remember that it’s very possible that people change, as their career does, or, that there are loads of very happy pragmatists working in highly creative careers, or that you could be a real mixture of a few of these 16 personalities, meaning your career recommendations could be varied.

And just because your personality type is suited to one particular type of role doesn’t mean you should stick to it, or that you shouldn’t follow your dream career just because it’s not linked to your set attributes.

But if you are at a career crossroads, or looking for a change, this info on the widely-accepted model of the 16 personalities, might just give you a little bit of inspiration…


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