Thursday, September 04, 2008

Myers-Briggs alphabet soup

So I went to a gathering with co-workers last night, and the subject of Myers-Briggs came up. Then, I logged into Meebo today, and the Meebo blog post of the day related to Myers-Briggs. I usually make an ugly face when someone mentions personality testing in general and M-B in particular, but since I got the M-B double whammy, I decided it was time to take the test again. I'm cynical about this test, because every time I take it, I get a slightly different result. Most versions of the test ask you to choose between opposites ("Would you rather go to a party or read a book?"), when I want to provide a nuanced answer ("It depends on my mood, what I've done all day, how tired I am, how good the book is, what kind of music will be played at the party, and how many hot guys will be there."). It's just like an English major to answer a yes/no question with an essay.

Anyway, the Meebo blog post included links to two different unofficial Myers-Briggs questionnaires: and I took both, and sure enough, I got different results. On the first one, which offered only yes/no options, I scored an ENFJ. On the other, which offered an "in between" option, I scored an ENFP. Based on the temperament descriptions, I think the ENFJ is more accurate. In each case, the strength of the preferences wasn't especially strong. That fits with what I already know about myself, that I seek the middle ground and am adaptable in most situations--or, as my critics would say, I'm wishy-washy and a flake. But I like my version better.

I wonder how I'll score the next time I take one of these silly things.

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