Most Popular Personality Tests

Phuong White Business Basics, Education, Emotional Intelligence Leave a Comment

smilyHandIs a personality test personally helpful or is it a tool designed to give companies one more way of classifying, categorizing and “type” casting us into a role in the workplace?  I say both. 



Personality tests are designed to assess temperament and character.  These innate traits are what we use in our decision-making methods, our communication styles, and our behavior towards life.  Profiling can help us with understanding why we react to certain situations the way we do and how to process our emotions more effectively.  They bring to the foreground our strengths and give us wisdom to comprehend our weaknesses.  Used properly, personality profiles can shed light on our innate attraction to certain people and what personal and work activities are best suited to our temperament.

When we allow our behavior to match our personality, everything in life flows smoother.  We have more energy, better health, more fulfilling relationships and generally make more money. TRUTHism

On the personal front, the problem arises when we use these tests as our one and only road map in life.  Results are best used as guidelines to improve our interpersonal communications, to connect and respond to people in the “personality language” they understand.  From a business standpoint, I believe employers can short change their companies when they rely on the Personality Tests only as an assessment on their employee’s work ethic or worst yet to place a value judgement on their incentive worthiness based solely on a test.  People are MOST VALUABLE when they are inspired and committed regardless of their temperament.  Placing employees in proper roles and matching them with the correct team is vital to business success.  An accurate personality test is an invaluable tool when used in this capacity.

Every great leader is a brilliant interpreter & competent vision caster.

It has been established that personality tests are invaluable when used as a tool for understanding.  But how do we decide which tool to use with so many available to us?  Here’s my quick overview of the Most Popular Personality Tests available arranged by their date of introduction to the masses.



Yep, astrology is the oldest personality-profiling tool around.  Advocates say that your personality is based upon the configuration of stars and planets at the time of your birth.  Using Astrological signs as a means of assessing a person’s traits have had peeks and valleys in popularity over the ages.  Due to its connection with a more “mystical” image, this is one tool that is not currently popular in business assessments.  It certainly is entertaining to review and an appreciation of one of history’s ideology can be a virtue.


I CHING  (“Classic of Changes” or “Book of Changes”)

This classic text is about imagery, advice, philosophy and poetry used to stimulate enlightenment when faced with certain situations.  The “method” of I Ching using 64 chapters of hexagrams was translated by Richard Wilhem in 1920 and later believed to be an inspiration for Carl Jung’s “Personality Types.”  After which a mother daughter team, Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother, Katharine Cook Briggs created the Myers-Briggs Personality Profiling System


MYERS BRIGGS Type Indicator

This Type Indicator tests where an individual fall on the dimensions of Introversion vs. Extroversion, Sensing vs. Intuition, Feeling vs. Thinking and Judging vs. Perceiving based on a series of questions that measure our preferences.  Myers Briggs focuses on 16 Personality Types:

  • ISTJ – The Duty Fulfiller
  • ISTP – The Mechanic
  • ISFJ – The Nurturer
  • ISFP – The Artist
  • INFJ – The Protector
  • INFP – The Idealist
  • INTJ – The Scientist
  • INTP – The Thinker
  • ESTP – The Doer
  • ESTJ – The Guardian
  • ESFP – The Performer
  • ESFJ – The Caregiver
  • ENFP – The Inspirer
  • ENFJ – The Giver
  • ENTP – The Visionary
  • ENTJ – The Executive

The Myers Briggs is often used in business to help in job placement, leadership development, team building and interview screening.  Because of it’s complexity, this indicator tool is best used within the context of who the person is and by someone qualified to do so.


DISC Personality Types & Profiles

The DISC Profiles describes the four basic temperament of human behavior that was first introduced by Hippocrates 400 years before Christ: D-type or Dominat (Choleric) , I-type or Influential (Sanguine) S-type or Security Minded (Phlegmatic), and C-type or Compliant (Melancholy) .  This model measures two dimensions namely a preference towards working with a TASK vs. with PEOPLE or a tendency towards being ACTIVE vs. PASSIVE.










Active Task Oriented

Active People Oriented

Passive People Oriented

Passive Task Oriented

Directing, Demanding,
Determined, Decisive, Doing

Influencing, Inducing,
Impressing, Interactive,
Interested in people.

Stable, Shy,
Servant, Submissive,

Competent, Calculating,
Compliant, Careful,


KIERSEY Temperament Sorter  (Kiersey Bates)

This 70 questions personality profiler is similar to the Myers Briggs but classifies temperament into 4 main types and then divides them further into characters.






















iPERSONIC Personality Type

This tool is similar to both Meyers Briggs and Kiersey Bates and measures four main personality dimensions and labels them as follows:  ENERGY: Extroversion vs. Introversion,  INFORMATION: Sensing vs. Intuition, DECISION: Thinking vs. Feeling,  ACTION: Perceiving vs. Judging

From this we get 16 personality types with certain characteristics, behavioral patterns and preferences:





The Sensitive Doer

The Reliable Realist

The Analytical Thinker

The Dreamy Idealist

The Laid-Back Doer

The Good Natured Realist

The Independent Thinker

The Spontaneous Idealist

The Energetic Doer

The Determined Realist

The Dynamic Thinker

The Harmony-seeking Idealist

The Individualistic Doer

The Social Realist

The Groundbreaking Thinker

The Engaged Idealist

INTROVERTS draw on their energy from within.  It is their thoughts, interests, ideas and imagination they thrive on.  They are more process oriented.  Introverts make decisions based upon how they think and feel about something, without needing to consult others.  The introvert is happiest when working alone or with a few people.

EXTROVERTS get their energy from the outer world of activities, excitement, people and things.  They seek attention from others and like to be around people, manage people and lead people.

INTUITORS seek understanding from the relationships between concepts and ideas.  They are innovators, but may find it difficult bringing those ideas into reality in the real world.  Intuitors tend to be future oriented.

SENSORS are reality based in “touching” details that can be experienced now.  Sensors are good with timing.  Martial artists, dancers, sports people, construction workers, share traders, and anyone who likes to buy low and sell high is a “Sensor.”  Sensors tend to be more past oriented.


In addition to the before mentioned, there are a wide range of personality, cognition, affective and or conative tests currently available.  Here are just a few that I’ve seen:

  • Kolbe Conative Index
  • Personal DNA
  • Five-Factor Model (Big Five)
  • Wealth Dynamics
  • WorkTraits
  • Draw a Pig – let your imagination run wild.
  • The Color Quiz
  • Musical Visual Intelligence
  • Spiritual Belief System Selector Quiz
  • The Animal in You
  • PersonaBubble
  • Colorgenics Test

…. and the list continues.  While some tests have their basis in science and others are more in fun, I believe once you’ve weeded through the prolific typography of personality profiles out there, the serious knowledge seeker should employ a test based in science with a track record.


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The whole point of understanding “who” we are is to better interact with the world that we live in.  What’s the point of knowing that you are “an introvert” who’s married to an “an extravert” and working for “a sensor”?  What does all that mean and how can you use this knowledge to live a more influential and on purpose life?

The key is learning the benefits and limitations of each personality type then work towards progress by asking yourself a few questions:

  • How do you recognize different personality types by their attitude, values and behavior?
  • Have you been embracing differences or have you been trying to get everyone to behave and think like you do?
  • Is there something that you need to change to allow your energy to flow freely?
  • Do you need permission to just be yourself?
  • Then again, do you need a filter?
  • Are there negative events that you participate in or allow to take place, which hold you back?
  • What behaviors have become habitual?  For example, have you become so procedural that you forgot to check your options?  Have you let Introversion get the better of you such that you stress when having to talk before an audience?  Are you constantly referencing the past and thinking about what could go wrong?  Are you so focused on the future that you don’t see what is happening right now?
  • What do you need to do to harness the energy of your personality type?
  • What should you be outsourcing to others?

This takes us full circle back to the question “Why use Personality Tests”?  We use them to better understand life, people and situations so that we can make the proper adjustments needed to find a better “fit” in all aspects of our lives.  The wisdom to allow for authenticity in ourselves and our “fellow” human beings gives way to a more engaged and compelling future!  If you need coaching to get to the next level of success, I would love to be of service on your journey.  Contact me HERE.

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