Anyone just starting out in the working world or someone who has come to a crossroads in their career path will benefit from taking the Strong Interest Inventory assessment. The Strong Interest Inventory is the most accurate and the gold standard for career and occupational testing. The profile that results from this process will form a valuable guide to the steps you take and the decisions you will make regarding the future direction of your career.
The personal profile that is generated from the assessment will point you towards an occupational theme that is best suited to your personality, your interests and your strongest attributes. After being assessed with the Strong Interest Inventory, and being assigned a General Occupational Theme, you are provided with a wealth of information that describes what type of career categories you are most suited for as well as what most interests you and to whom and in what field of people you share the most interests.
6 General Occupational Themes (GOT’s) explained
- Realistic theme. Someone best suited to this occupational grouping includes people with interests in the trades like building, engineering and physical, outdoor activities. You enjoy working with tools and machinery rather than being desk-bound. If this theme sounds like you, explore its suggested Basic Interest Scales (BIS) to find the most interesting careers to investigate further.
- Investigative theme. The interests of investigative people include research in science, medicine and mathematics. People best suited to these types of careers have enquiring minds and problem-solving talents. The BIS applicable to this career path should guide you in your assessment of the best direction to follow.
- Artistic theme. Artistic personalities work best in careers like the performing arts, visual arts, design and literature. Your BIS suggests jobs in fields like cookery, the arts, journalism and architecture.
- Social theme. This theme will guide you towards careers in working with people. Your personal attributes are ideal for communicating with others in roles suggested by the BIS in social work, health care, religion, teaching, and counselling.
- Enterprising theme. People characterised by this job theme fall naturally into leadership roles, sales and promotion, and roles that influence or persuade others. The BIS job suggestions include politics, law, communications and management. You will have a propensity to become a business entrepreneur.
- Conventional theme. In this occupational theme, your interests will typically include work that requires attention to detail and accuracy, like data systems, finances, programming and design. You are drawn to work that will need your organisational skills.
The Strong Interest Inventory assessment will identify areas most suited to your personality and your interests and will help you find answers to those important questions concerning the direction of your career. Use the results to help manage the progression of your career. Review the GOTs and the BIS suggested in your profile to gain insight into what should be the next steps to implement.
Investigate the Personal Style Scales (PSS) on your profile to understand how you work best, what your interests are, and your orientation to learning. The PSS is broken down into five scales that include work style, learning environment, leadership style, risk-taking, and team orientation. Review your results to learn more about yourself, your preferences, your capabilities and your strengths. This insight will help guide you to your ideal occupation with the best fit for your personality.
Consider the additional occupational titles suggested by the ‘Strong’ and identify interesting job possibilities to explore further. For each listed occupation, find out more about the job description; its salary potential, what qualifications or training are applicable; the work environment; and any future employment avenues it may lead to. You need to assess how each suggested job measures up to your PSS results, including your motivators and values.
Tommy Williamson did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.
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