I came across this personality test at Visual DNA on a friend’s Facebook page, and it’s unusual in that it asks you to pick images that appeal to you. I like trying different personality tests such as the venerable Myers-Brigg Type Indicator (aka MBTI) to see what patterns might pop up. I don’t consider the results to be definitive or limiting in any way, but it’s instructive to see what decisions other people with similar results will make.
I’ve been taking some variant of the MBTI every year since I was a sophomore in college, where I used it to try to determine if there was a difference between “hackers” and “professional programmers” for my humanities sufficiency at WPI. The answer may seem obvious today, but this was 1988 when such questions were still rather new. The first time I took the MBTI, I came up as an INFP, which at the time was a horrifyingly touch-feely result. After a stint of swinging into INTJ “mastermind” territory, I became more comfortable with my INFP tendencies and accepted them more readily, only busting out the rational shield-and-sword of the INTJ when threatened by nearby acts of incompetence.
The MBTI test consists of nearly 100 questions that ask you to choose between two possible answers, choosing the one that is most “you at home”. For fun you can take it again as “you at work”; you may get a different result! There’s a pretty good example of the long-form MBTI test on OkCupid of all places if you want to take it. It’s pretty much all text. By comparison, Visual DNA’s Who Am I test looks like this:
You go through the test picking the images that appeal to you most, based on the question. At the end of it, you get a nice PDF that summarizes all the traits that you might have. Here’s a link to my results. It evaluates me on 5 facets and 10 personality elements. For example, my personality preference for ACTION had been judged as follows:
ACTION: Methodical – Methodical people know how to concentrate on any task they’re set and keep focus on it to completion – so focused in fact that it’s impossible to distract them. Your slow and steady approach may frustrate some people, but their concerns will always be allayed when you deliver your work on time and on spec.
It hadn’t occurred to me that the way I worked could be described as methodical. I had thought it was “comprehensive” or “analytical”, but these were not really right. I do prefer a methodical approach, even when I’m making something up. Insight +1!
Anyway, it’s a pretty nifty test. Check it out at visualdna.com.