I’m a fan of career and personality assessment to accelerate career and leadership development. Assessments are only a starting point for deeper exploration, so once you have results, it takes additional work to use the data productively. Professional counselors and psychologists (and some coaches who pursued additional education) are trained in how to interpret the results and translate the information into action steps.
Here are some of my favorite career and personality assessments:
O*Net Interest Profiler – A free career interest assessment sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor. Once you have your results, take a screenshot as there doesn’t seem to be a way to save them.
Interest Profiler – A free career interest assessment sponsored by the California Career Resource Network. To keep your results, you will need to register on their site. The Interest Profiler gives you a Holland code just like more expensive assessments do.
Strong Interest Inventory® (SII) – A fee-based career interest assessment that compares your interests in a broad range of occupations, work, and leisure activities to the interests of professionals who are satisfied with their career choices. The SII requires professional interpretation by a trained career counselor. There is also a version, iStartStrong®, that is designed to be self-interpreted.
CareerLeader® – A fee-based career interest assessment specializing in business career paths. Offered directly from the publisher or via a trained career counselor.
Career Interests, Abilities, and Values
Career Occupational Preference (COP) System 3 – The COPSystem 3 is fee-based but very affordable and offers an integrated assessment of interests, abilities, and values. Available via a trained career counselor.
YouScience – An aptitude-based talent discovery platform that aims to uncover users’ natural talents and aligns them with their best-fit, high-demand educational pathways and careers. Fee-based but affordable; available through career counselors and also via their website.
Personality and Emotional Intelligence
16Personalities.com – A free measure of personality type. Personality type is best used to evaluate career environments rather than specific careers as the predictive power of personality type for career choice is not high.
Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI) – A fee-based measure of psychological preferences in how people perceive the world and make decisions. Offered directly from the publisher (CPP) or via counselors/coaches if you want professional help to interpret the results. The MBTI is valid for team and personal development. It is not valid for selection purposes or to exclude anyone from any career opportunity.
California Psychological Inventory® (CPI) – A fee-based measure of personal and work-related characteristics, motivations, and thinking styles. The CPI requires professional interpretation.