The MBTI personality test – Get to know yourself better to be yourself


Have you ever taken the time to do a personality assessment? To get to know you?

Knowing oneself is a lifelong endeavor… and from time to time, introspection allows us to clarify: Who am I? What are my personality traits? What is my true personality? What are my core values?

By having a better knowledge of oneself, it is easier to communicate one’s personality and requirements to others, especially at work. This contributes to personal balance and fulfillment.

The MBTI test is frequently used by coaching firms for personal development and to prepare professional reconversions. Therefore, we wanted to tell you about it 🙂

MBTI, what is it?

Let’s start at the beginning, the MBTI test was invented by Katharine Cook Briggs and her daughter in the United States at the beginning of the 20th century, it is an abbreviation of Myers & Briggs Type Indicator.

The MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) test is a classic in the field of training and coaching. It is a reference when it comes to analyzing the personality and psychological type of an individual.

In observing her daughter and her future husband (Clarence Myers), Katharine Cook Briggs found that they had very different personalities and ways of functioning.

She then undertook her research to understand the different temperaments. And as luck would have it, during the period from “1875-1961” the Swiss psychiatrist “Carl Gustaf Jung” carried out work that brought to light the existence of “psychological types“.

Katharine Cook Briggs wanted to deepen her research and develop theoretical approaches based on the work of Carl Gustaf Jung, and the MBTI test was born in 1962.

Since its initial publication in 1962, the MBTI personality test has been continually updated. It is one of the most popular and widely used psychometric tests, notably by psychologists and psychiatrists to determine the personality of their patients and to detect possible personality disorders, and by recruiters for professional exams and skills assessments.

How does the MBTI personality test work?

The MBTI test classifies personality into 16 different categories. It is composed of a primary axis and three secondary axes, and contains 60 questions.

Each axis is based on an opposition between two of the following principles:

  • Energy orientation of the person: Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I) 

-Are you an Extravert or an Introvert?

-How do you recharge your batteries?

➙ Surrounded by other people [E] or alone with yourself [I].

  • Gathering information: Sensation (S) or Intuition (N)

-Sensation or Intuition

-How do you process information?

-Through your physical senses [S] or intuitive senses [N]

  • Decision Making: Thinking (T) or Feeling (F)

-How do you make your decisions?

➙ Conscientious, you think before you act [T] or feel [F].

  • Mode of action: Judgment (J) or Perception (P).

-How do you take action?

➙ In a planned way [J] or in an improvised way, taking opportunities that come your way [P].

These values are represented by a letter that corresponds to the initial letter of the English term. This is why there is not always a link between the symbolic letter and the word it represents in French. The 4 letters correspond to 4 cognitive functions or behavioral preferences:

Here is the explanation of each axis of the scale:

1. Extraversion (E) – Introversion (I):

The Extraversion-Introversion dichotomy was first explored by Jung in his theory of personality types to describe how people react and interact with the world around them. Although these terms are familiar to most people, the way they are used here differs somewhat from their common usage.

2. (S) – Intuition (N):

This scale involves looking at how people gather information from the world around them. As with extraversion and introversion, all people spend time sensing and understanding, depending on the situation.

3. Thinking (T) – Feeling (F):

This scale focuses on how people make decisions based on information gathered from their sensing or intuition functions. People who prefer to think place more emphasis on facts and objective data. They tend to be consistent, logical and impersonal when evaluating a decision. Those who prefer to feel are more likely to consider people and emotions in reaching a conclusion.

4. Judgment (J) – Perception (P):

The final scale is about how people tend to deal with the outside world. Those who lean toward judgment prefer structural and firm decisions. Those who tend to perceive are more open, flexible and adaptable.

Each personality type is then listed by its four-letter code:

  • INTP: the researcher
  • INTJ : the organizer
  • ENTJ : the entrepreneur
  • ENTP : the inventor
  • INFP : the idealist
  • ENFP : the psychologist
  • INFJ : the counselor
  • ENFJ : the animator
  • ISTP: the craftsman
  • ISTJ: the administrator
  • ESTP: the promoter
  • ESTJ : the manager
  • ISFP : the artist
  • ISFJ : the protector
  • ESFP : the actor
  • ESFJ : the bon vivant

Why take the MBTI test?

The MBTI is an excellent tool for self-knowledge and self-assertion. It allows you to acquire a deeper understanding of your mode of functioning, as well as your strengths, weaknesses, character traits and defects.

Within the framework of a professional project, the realization of an introspection with the help of the MBTI personality test allows you to better define your project.

Where do I find the MBTI test?

Take the test here online for free

⌛ Duration: 10-15 minutes

Our advice: answer spontaneously and authentically 🙂

The limits of the MBTI test

Despite its popularity in the business sector today, the MBTI personality test has its limitations. Its reliability has been questioned, due to the inherent biases of the personality questionnaire.

The first reason why this test is being questioned is the training of the creators of the model. Neither Isabel Briggs Myers, nor her mother “Katherine Cook Briggs”, have the necessary training to set up such a personality analysis device.

The second reason is the variability of the results over time, some opponents have relied on studies about the stability of the test. According to this research, half of the people who answered the questionnaire twice received different answers after only five weeks. This would call into question the relevance of the analysis.

Some researchers are opposed to the idea of classifying individuals into boxes, such as the MBTI model, which aims to classify individuals into sixteen personality types.

Some observers have been uptight about the fixed number of categories, objecting to the concept of such a classification. Thus, the human being would be too complicated to be given a really relevant label by a simple questionnaire.

All the more so since this label could, as we have seen, vary with time. And it would be very dependent on the environment, the answers of the same individual being able to evolve according to what (and those) surrounds him.

Finally, the MBTI test presents a blurred image of a person’s personality at a given time. It should not be considered as an absolute and immutable fact, but rather as an indicator, a vector of precious information, to be verified and reaffirmed over time.

Our human resources teams in Pentabell also use reliable tests: psychological, psychotechnical ….etc, to decipher the different aspects of the personality in order to recruit profiles that match the needs of our various client companies.

Now that you’ve learned about the MBTI test, here are some articles that might interest you.

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9 Tips to prepare for a successful job interview.

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