We’ve all probably taken a career test before to try to figure out which career path we should or shouldn’t go down, but what exactly is the value of those tests? Many have the experience of being given results that seem inaccurate or unrelatable. When I took one in high school it said I should go into banking, which was definitely something I did not expect. I knew nothing about banking and I had no interest in that field. So, what did that test tell me? Probably a little about myself. Maybe I didn’t want banking, but my answers to the questions meant I had interests, skills and strengths that could apply in that field. Ultimately, the purpose of the tests was to deepen my understanding and awareness of myself—an essential step in the career decision-making process. This month, we are highlighting two career assessments that focus more specifically on your strengths and your interests.
The first one that I found really helpful after I took it was the VIA Institute on Character Strengths Profile. It asks you 120 questions about yourself and then based on your answers, it ranks 24 strengths that it says every person has. My top strength was “Love of Learning” which I totally agree with. I really enjoy learning new things and working on projects that involve problem-solving. How would I apply this to my career? Well, to me, this means that I should probably find a job in the strategic communication field that allows me to utilize many different skills and has me working on different things each day. This strength profile doesn’t give you a list of careers you should pursue, but it’s really helpful to know your strengths and weaknesses as you decide on a career path.
The second test that you may find helpful is based on your interests and is called the O*NET Interest Profile. This one is more career-based and asks you questions more specifically related to potential job fields. This career test is more helpful than others that I have taken in the past because at the end it breaks down potential careers into two categories. One is “best fit” and the other is “great fit.” It doesn’t give you a number one career you should choose or careers you should absolutely avoid. It takes your interests, and based on those gives you several options.
These resources help you dive further into learning about yourself. They can be helpful if you’re looking to switch your major or career path and can help you get to know your strengths and your interests. If you need help figuring out what job would best combine those strengths and interests, stop by the CLDC and make a career coaching appointment with us!
By Kate Ansel, CLDC Social Media Intern