What is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® ?
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® is a tool (sometimes known as the ‘Instrument’ , essentially a series of questions) whereby we can define and better understand our behaviours and communication style.
It is based on the Theory of Personality of Carl Jung. Jung believed that our personality was governed primarily by the manner in which we perceived the world (how we take in information) and the manner in which we make decisions.
Within those two elements (perception, and decision-making) Jung believed we each operate preferentially in one of two binary functional manners as they relate to different aspects of our personality. Our ‘preference’ refers to which we like better; an example from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® (MBTI ® ) would be whether we prefer to give our attention to our Inner World (Introversion) or the external world (Extroversion).
All of these parts go up to make our ‘type’. The MBTI ® is based on the premise that our behaviour and preferences (our personality) can be shown to be consistent according to our ‘type’.
How might people make use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® Instrument?
The MBTI ® Instrument helps us arrive at a ‘type’ that best describes our personality according to the theory. At a fundamental level, a knowledge of your type can help you in your relationships with others. This is true in personal relationships, but also the relationships you form in your work life with colleagues, clients, employers and employees.
Isabel Briggs Myers believed that “When people differ, a knowledge of type lessens friction and eases strain. In addition it reveals the value of differences”. Knowing more about your type can assist you to get the best from yourself, and a knowledge of others’ type can help you bring out the best in others.
I’ve taken a personality test before. How is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI ®) assessment different?
There are many personality tests available online that have similarities to the MBTI® instrument, and many based on Jung’s Theory of Personality. Many of these are free, and some are quite detailed. But they are not created equal, and taking an online test is not the same as being part of a practical assessment.
The main difference is that assessment offered by a Certified MBTI ® Practitioner is much more in-depth, and involves discussion, feedback and interpretation of results. Indeed, the MBTI ® Instrument is a psychological tool that requires the Practitioner administering it is “educationally eligible”, meaning they have a degree in psychology, counselling, or a related field (read more here: http://bit.ly/MBTICertified ).
The goal is to help you learn more about how to get the best from yourself, with a greater understanding of how you perceive the world and how you make decisions.