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Working To Your Strengths – Using Assessments to Focus Your Career Goals

Aristotle once said, “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom. When we know ourselves and what we are good at, we can work smarter.  So it is no surprise that those with strong self-awareness tend to do better professionally. They tend to perform better at work, get more promotions and lead more effectively.

Self-assessment tests are helpful in sharpening your awareness of your strengths, weaknesses, interests and personality preferences, among other important aspects of ‘you’, including personal styles such as communication or problem solving styles.

Why Use Assessments?

Some assessment tests may help you identify career paths that suit you, or identify ways to advance in your career. You might identify strengths to focus on in job interviews, or improve your communication and leadership skills. The more you know, the more information you have to build on.

Check out some common assessments and how they might help you reach your goals.assessment tests

Personality

Myers Briggs Personality Type Indicator

Considered by many as the most popular and well-known self-assessment, Myers-Briggs is based on Carl Jung’s theory that we all have natural preferences related to how we perceive the world and live our lives.

The MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) helps you gain insight into your innate preferences related to

  • how you gain energy and communicate with others
  • take in information
  • make decisions
  • how you schedule (or not schedule!) your life

These areas then make up your personality type.  A skilled administrator of MBTI will utilize your personality type to help you identify possible career paths as well as provide insights related to communication and problem-solving styles.

Your Strengths

StrengthsFinder (or CliftonStrengths, named after the founder of Strengths Psychology)

This assessment is focused on discovering what you naturally do best. The assessment will help you identify strengths or “talent-themes” and maximize those talents. Some examples of the strengths include

  • Adaptability
  • Communication
  • Connectedness
  • Consistency
  • Focus
  • Positivity
  • Strategic

Identifying these strengths can then help you market your talent-themes as part of the job search, or to focus your tasks at work. Some companies use StrengthsFinder to identify employees’ talent-themes to choose best-fit jobs or responsibilities.

Your Interests

Strong Interest Assessment

The Strong Interest Assessment identifies your work personality based on your interests. Built on John Holland’s theory of interest areas, it helps people consider potential careers as well as identify their personal styles.

The interest areas are:

  • Realistic
  • Investigative
  • Artistic
  • Social
  • Enterprising
  • Conventional

The assessment provides a scale of how high or low you score per interest matched to both occupational themes as well as specific occupations. The assessment also provides information on how your interests relate to personal styles related to how you might learn best or prefer to work.

Your Emotional and Social Intelligence

EQi – Emotional Quotient Inventory

The EQi assesses emotional-social intelligence in the areas of

  • Self-perception
  • Interpersonal
  • Decision making
  • Self-expression
  • Stress management

While many other assessments tend to focus on your natural interests and preferences, this assessment uses the theory that your emotional-social intelligence can be developed. The assessment will identify areas for development and EQ-related coaching and training. The tool has a leadership report option which focuses on authenticity, coaching, insights, and innovation.

 

This article originally appeared on Ed Hunter's website, Life in Progress, here. 

Complimentary TweetChat Transcript: Becoming a Better Leader

Some of the questions asked included:

- What qualities and behaviors do you believe define a good leader?
- How does emotional intelligence and self-awareness fit into leadership development?
- Are leadership assessments still important to the executive hiring process?
- How can modern leaders make the workplace better and inspire their teams?
- How do I identify and prepare my successor?
- And more!

Read the Transcript Here

About the author

Ed Hunter's picture

Ed Hunter is an executive and career coach with BlueSteps Executive Career Services. Ed believes in coaching and training the whole person. In each session, he is fully present and deeply intuitive, but also grounded in the real world. Ed's pre-coaching experience includes ten years in higher education administration, as well as leadership role in marketing and sales in the publishing, healthcare and geospatial technology. Ed also hold an MBA from St. Joseph’s University, and a certification of Professional Certified Coach (PCC) from the International Coaching Federation.

Learn more about the BlueSteps team of career advisors and the services they provide to help you improve your career trajectory here.

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