Many of us have participated in programs that assess our work personality type.
Two examples are Myers Briggs and Team Management Systems.
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One thing to bear in mind is that most of these tests taken in a work environment are based on how you conduct yourself at work, which means they don’t always reflect how you behave outside of your normal working environment.
Perhaps your work personality profile results were extremely accurate. Excellent!
While these types of personality profiles can help improve your work relationships (I was fortunate enough to experience this first hand), I think problems can arise when you let your profile define or pigeonhole you as a person.
To avoid being stuck in a rut or stereotyped, I dare you to challenge yourself.
Do something out of work hours completely against your profile type. For example, if you are an introvert make an effort to get out among a lot of people. Don’t go alone, take your best friend or better still a group of friends along with you.
For extroverts, take a secluded walk somewhere and spend time enjoying your own company. Spend time being completely silent.
If you are a numbers person focus on doing something creative. If you are the sort of person who plans everything, do something spontaneous.
I’m sure you get the picture.
Some of us may enjoy being labeled a particular type of person.
We seek comfort in our labels (both the ones other people give as well as the ones we give ourselves).
Just to be clear, I’m not criticizing personality types, in fact, I find them interesting and have read a lot about my own personality type (which is an INFP in case you were wondering). I have a lot of the characteristics of my personality type.
Learning more about my personality type and looking for areas where I can improve and grow has helped me a great deal.
But there are also characteristics about my personality type that don’t apply to me.
By playing it safe and stubbornly sticking to your personality type, you could be missing out on some wonderful experiences and opportunities.
You are more complex (and amazing) than a label or a personality type.
Don’t limit yourself. Make sure you embrace all of the dazzling sides of your personality.
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Those work-related personality tests always struck me as an underhanded way to imply what employers expect from their employees by using confirmation biased questions, where you know the ‘right’ answer, but it’s almost never the true answer.