Career success

A Quick Guide To Personality Tests (And Why They Don't Work)

With personality tests,- the big idea is that it is possible to quantify your personality by asking you about your feelings, thoughts and behavior. You will be presented with statements describing various ways of feeling or acting and asked to answer each one on a scale. For example;


1. I enjoy taking risks?

A) True B) False


2. I like to be the center of attention?

A) strongly disagree B) disagree C) neutrals D) agree E) strongly agree


Part 1: What’s wrong with Personality testing in general


1. Some of the companies that produce personality tests are very secretive about their methodologies and do not make public crucial information about how their tests were developed or how well they work, claiming that this information is ''proprietary.'


2. A task force appointed by the American Psychological Association found that for some personality tests, ''(there is) almost no evidence at all is available beyond assurances that evidence exists.'


3. A study conducted by the American Psychological Association which found that over 80% of job applicants actually hired after taking a widely used personality test had intentionally manipulated their answers to make themselves look better.


In other words, you can fake being someone else in a Personality Test.


Despite the claims of test producers, it is very easy to cheat. Certainly, most tests contain some so-called impression control questions, designed to catch out candidates who are trying to give an overly good impression. With a little practice, you can spot these questions when most tests consist of less than 150 questions in total.


4. The most popular Personality test MBTI is not that good or accurate.

See below.


Part 2: Five things that are wrong with Myers-Briggs Type Indicator or MBTI


According to the BBC, there are around 2,500 personality tests on the market. MBTI is one of most popular of these personality tests.


MBTI has 93 questions, after answering which we are put into one of 16 character types, all combinations of introverts, extroverts, thinkers, feelers, the judging or perceptive.


How neat. Reducing everything to simple categories. FYI, here are the MBTI personality types:


ISTJ- The Duty Fulfillers

ESTJ- The Guardians

ISFJ- The Nurturers

ESFJ- The Caregivers

ISTP- The Mechanics

ESTP- The Doers

ESFP- The Performers

ISFP- The Artists

ENTJ- The Executives

INTJ- The Scientists

ENTP- The Visionaries

INTP- The Thinkers

ENFJ- The Givers

INFJ- The Protectors

ENFP- The Inspirers

INFP- The Idealists


1. MBTI has no scientific basis, psychiatry is not an empirical science (data, proof etc).


2. In ' The Cult of Personality', author Annie Murphy Paul reports that 75% of test takers get a different personality type when they test for a second time.


3. People often asnwer on these tests depending on the situation. If they have an idea of what kind of person an employer is looking to fill jobs, they will prepare and answer accordingly.


4. Then there is this overwhelming preference for positive extroverts, as far as MBTI goes. So, even introverts have to cheat on these tests. Susan Cain, author of 'Quiet: The Power of Introverts In a World That Can't Stop Talking', introverts are just as high achievers. MBTI is biased towards gung- ho types.


5. There is also the 'self fulfilling' effect- when others are taking it, you feel you got to take the tests too.


Next step: Just click this link for a Google search on 'do personality tests work?' 


Thank you for reading.
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