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What Career is Right For Me?
Asking "what career is right for me?" is one of the most important decisions you will ever make. The right career brings you success and happiness. But if you make a poor decision, through using information that is too simple or not based on research, it can damage your prospects, relationships and prosperity for many years to come.
This article provides guidance on what makes a good career test, and the various criteria that can influence your career choice. Reading is optional, if you wish you can skip straight to the personality/career test:
There are many career tests, though the quality of them varies. The worst are based on opinions derived from stereotypes - e.g. "an 'ESFJ' personality type will enjoy nursing". Research shows that such a simplistic approach does not lead you to the best career. The best career tests:
|Are based on research with people already in careers
|Use themes, such as personality type
|Use your unique personality profile
|Match your individual personality to careers
|Take account of the demands of the job
|Are statistically valid and robust
Our careers test meets all these criteria. It provides a free online report, with your personality type and leadership style, and explains some of the issues you need to take into account when choosing a career. There is also the option of a more extensive, low-cost report that shows which careers are best suited to your personality.
Career Choice factors
The factors to take into account, when trying to find the right career for you, include:
Your skills are based on your natural aptitudes and developed through training/education.
You may wish to consider factors such as the type of lifestyle you want, your beliefs, and the ethical nature of company or industry you want to work in.
Your choice of career might be constrained by financial or geographical limitations, family responsibilities, physical disability or your qualifications/education
You may want to consider if and when you want to start a family and "settle down", whether you want a single job for the rest of your life or have the option to change career, and potential ambitions for setting up your own business. You should also consider what your retirement strategy will be.
Deciding what you want to do is of no use unless there are opportunities for you to pursue. You can find opportunities through various ways, e.g.: responding to advertisements for jobs or vocational training/sponsorship; making unsolicited approaches to organisations to see if there are any vacancies; networking through people you know to get referrals to potential employers; and creating your own business.
Your personality is a very important factor. It consists of things you know about your self, unconscious motivations, and your personality preferences which you can discover with our personality/career test.
Most of these criteria are relatively straightforward to take into account. You can often identify your skills, values, ambitions, etc. through reflection or discussion with a career counsellor. The area that is more difficult to establish is the match between your personality and the job. This is where our career test can help. We conducted research with 17,000 people into job enjoyment, described in our personality test technical manual. This showed that the main factors in job enjoyment were:
- The degree of difference (or stretch) between the job profile and your unique personality profile (not your personality type). If you have to stretch more, the job is less enjoyable.
- The nature of the job itself. Irrespective of how well your personality matches the career, some jobs are inherently more enjoyable than others.
Our personality test, at the Metarasa Personality Page, uses this research to predict your level of enjoyment in each job. This is based on personality and not the other factors described above. It provides free analysis for twenty careers, with a low cost option for 300 careers.