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The Value of Knowing Someone's Personality Type for Open Sales Positions

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Personality tests are becoming an increasingly popular tool for hiring managers looking to fill job positions. But why? What value do personality tests actually have when it comes to predicting job performance? In this article we'll have a closer look.

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The Value of Knowing Someone's Personality Type for Open Job Positions
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Personality Tests as a Predictor of Job Performance

Several different personality tests exist. Still, the two most commonly used in business are the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Big Five personality test.

The MBTI comprises four dichotomies: extraversion vs. introversion, sensing vs. intuition, thinking vs. feeling, and judging vs. perceiving. Each individual falls somewhere on a spectrum for each dichotomy, and those placements can give insights into how that person will interact with others and handle various work tasks. For example, someone who falls on the extroverted side of the extraversion vs. introversion dichotomy is likely to be more outgoing and better at networking than someone who falls on the introverted side.

The Big Five personality test looks at five different traits: neuroticism, extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, and openness to experience. Research has shown that these five traits can accurately predict job performance—in fact, conscientiousness is the best predictor of job performance across various jobs. That's likely because conscientiousness is associated with traits like reliability, punctuality, and attention to detail—all essential qualities for most jobs.

Our favorite personality test: The 16 Personalities

The 16 personalities test is only 10 minutes long and gives you a freakishly accurate description of who they are and why they do the things they do. It's great for working environments as it shares their working habits and the importance of their intrinsic wishes within their career path. What needs to be clarified before taking the test is that they need to answer the questions exactly how they act at the moment, not the way they believe is preferable. There are no wrong answers, and this must be conveyed before anyone takes the test.

The personality test splits everybody into four categories; the analysts, the diplomats, the sentinels, and the explorers. Only this aspect already gives you a good sense of whether they are a good fit for the positions.

Analysts are intuitive and thinking personality types known for their impartiality, rationality, and intellectual excellence. These people are (as the word says) great for analytical jobs but also make great mediators, debaters, and negotiators.

Diplomats are intuitive and feeling personalities and are well known for their empathy, diplomatic skills, and passionate idealism. These people are great teachers and professors. They are great in consultative jobs as they passionately think about improving and helping others reach their goals.

Sentinels observe and judge personality types and are very practical, organized, and focused. They are also very keen on stability and security. For those reasons, these people do well in jobs that require routine, detailed work.

And lastly, the explorers, who are observant and prospecting personality types. They are known for their spontaneity, flexibility, and genuity. They often turn out to be entertainers or creative and challenging jobs.

Wrapping up

Personality tests can be valuable tools for hiring managers looking to fill job positions because they can give insights into how a candidate is likely to perform in that role. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Big Five personality test are two of the most commonly used personality tests in the business world. They both have predictive power regarding job performance. However, the 16 personality test is complete and maybe even more detailed than the others. So if you're interested in using personality tests as part of your hiring process, rest assured that you're not alone - and that there's evidence to support their efficacy.