Goal #2, professional development: Find / develop a sound professional niche.
‘Professional development’ is not in itself an achievable goal. In order to make it so, I’d need to believe in a suitable career match and decide where to go. While this post offer no solution to my career confusion (my entire blog is about trying to sort that out), there are couple of tools I find helpful in pointing towards potential career directions.
This post is about the Myers Briggs Personality Type Indicator, and the next will look at SWOT analysis as a career development tool.
1. Myers Briggs Personality Type indicator
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment is a psychometric questionnaire designed to measure psychological preferences in how people perceive the world and make decisions.
Wikipedia, 9 April 2012
The MBTI assessment categorises one’s set of psychological preferences into one of 16 personality types, which each corresponds to a list of ‘matching’ career options (for example). It can assist with career planning by sorting occupations into suitable VS unsuitable careers.
The 16 Myers-Briggs personality types build on four behavioural preference dichotomies based* on the theories of psychiatrist and psycho analyst Carl Gustav Jung. An MBTI test (~ questionnaire) is sometimes called a ‘Jungian personality test’.
The four personal preference dichotomies are:**
- Social orientation: Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I)
~ Focus on outer VS inner reality
- Information processing: Sensing (S) or Intuition (N)
~ Focus on basic information VS meaning-added interpretation
- Decision making: Thinking (T) or Feeling (F)
~ Focus on logic and consistency VS people, opinions and circumstances
- Tolerance to uncertainty: Judging (J) or Perceiving (P)
~ Need for closure VS prefer to keep options open
Each of the 16 personality types is named with a four-letter acronym which defines its combination of psychological preferences. A brief description of each of the personality profiles can be found on the Myers & Briggs Foundation’s website, and more thorough descriptions can be found on Typelogic and Keirsey (links are to the INTJ personality type, but all types are represented).