“I am a Creative Architect.”
I remember the day I opened the results from the MAPP Assessment I had completed. Someone had recommended it to me as I considered potential career paths. “Trust me,” they said, smiling. “It takes a bit of time to complete, but the assessment is pretty cool. It’s not a test or anything—it just looks at the way you think and the things you like to do. Then it provides a list of careers that might be a fit for you.”
I laughed at the thought of a simple set of questions being a shining light into my future. But before long, my fingers were tapping away on the keyboard, working through the “this or that” scenarios.
The results fascinated me. The careers suggested intrigued me (in fact, the #1 suggestion is what I’ve been doing successfully for more than 30 years). And with that, MAPP sold me on the value of assessment tools when it comes to learning more about the way we’re wired spiritually, intellectually, and culturally.
Assessments can provide unique perspectives into both the way we process the world around us and the way we are naturally designed to respond to it because of our gifts, talents, and strengths. They can help us understand why we naturally gravitate to certain styles or people, why some of us need more structure while others can “shoot from the hip,” and how we view things like conflict or opportunity.
Best of all, when used rightly, assessments can help us learn to live and work
together more effectively.
Here are twelve great assessments to provide insight on career paths, communication styles, and spiritual gifts. Most are either free or inexpensive, and only a few take more than a few minutes to complete. Remember, assessments can’t read minds or override your overthinking. When taking assessments, respond honestly. Before you take an assessment, get to know a bit about the methodology behind it, and how its creators intended it to be used. And don’t stop with just one assessment. Taking more than one allows you to see themes and patterns emerging.
As I shared, I’m a Creative Architect in MAPP language. Since I’ve taken each of the following assessments, I’ll share my results with you (you’ll see my themes and patterns). I’d love to know yours as well – along with other assessments you’ve found to be worth the investment!
1. iPersonic Assessment
Four questions. That’s all they ask. And the results are impressive. The methodology draws from Meyers-Briggs and Jung, so you’ll likely see a lot of cross-over if you also do the assessment from 16 Personalities. But the iPersonic assessment language is warm, readable, and straight to the point.
My results: The Engaged Idealist.
MAPP is one of the oldest assessments around, using 71 “most/least” questions to determine best possible career paths. The assessment takes 22 minutes, and you’ll receive basic information absolutely free. More robust reports include top 20 general career matches, and start at $89.
My results: Creative Architect. #1 Career Path: Marketing, advertising, public relations.
This simple assessment invites you to select from four possibilities, choosing a most likely and a least likely from the images shown. The results are basic and directional but are a fun accompaniment to other assessments. I must admit, I was disappointed when “choreographer” wasn’t listed in my top three careers. This woman LOVES to dance.
My results: Social, Artistic, Enterprising.
Personality/Communication Style Assessments
1. Keirsey Temperament Sorter
I was introduced to this assessment by colleagues at Coca-Cola USA. It measures how people communicate and what their actions tend to be. There are 71 questions to answer, so it does take a bit of time. But the insights are well worth the investment.
My results: Idealist Teacher.
2. Meyers-Briggs/16 Personalities
16 Personalities begins with Myers-Briggs and then adds a lot of descriptive flavor (you might be “The Protagonist” or “The Virtuoso.”) The assessment provides wisdom on where you gain your strength, how decisions are made, and what type of structure is best for you to thrive.
If you’d rather take the classic Myers-Briggs assessment, it can be found here:
My results: ENFJ, The Protagonist
Currently, the assessment receiving the most press is Enneagram, which explores nine different types or styles that each represent the way you think, feel, and respond to the world around you. There are a number of assessment tools and resources currently available online, along with a growing number of books, studies, and coaches. Some assessments are free, and some coaches suggest not taking an assessment at all, but rather reading one of the many books and then determining which of the nine types best describes you. If you want to better understand Enneagram from a practical standpoint, follow YourEnneagramCoach on Instagram.
Two assessments that provide good insight are:
My results: 4w3, the Aristocrat. Top personality traits: More extroverted, competitive, upbeat, ambitious.
My tri-type results: Primary Type 4, Tri-Type 4-7-9. Top personality traits: Individualist, Enthusiast, Social, Intimate.
4. DISC Assessment
DISC (which stands for Dominance/Influence/Steadiness/Conscientiousness) measures your behavioral tendencies in different situations. It’s often used to help strengthen work environments by helping employees better understand their coworkers. The assessment is 28-questions long, and takes just a few moments to complete.
My results: (very) HIGH I, (not quite as) high D, flatlined S/C.
5. Clifton Strengths
Clifton Strengths (also known as StrengthsFinder) focuses on discovering the strengths you bring to bear when responding to the world around you. The assessment reveals the top five strengths (unless you want to pay to see all 37) that create the lens by which you see problems and opportunities.
My results: Strategy, Ideation, Connectedness, Relator, Achiever.
6. Kendall Life Languages
This is a comprehensive assessment that focuses its attention on your emotional response to the world around you. It ranks your “life languages” in seven categories, and then provides insight into how you interact with others, manage stress, moderate feedback, and learn.
My results: Primary Life Language is Influencer. Second life language is Responder. Interactive style is balanced. Learning preference is physical.
Spiritual Gift Assessments
Of all the spiritual gift assessments out there, this is by far the most comprehensive and unique. Created by the folks at LifeChurch (the same ministry that launched YouVersion), this free resource provides a complete roadmap for understanding personal ministry.
Results: Spiritual gifts include exhortation, leadership, teaching and wisdom. Writing is noted as an expressive outlet.
This assessment takes only five minutes to complete, and provides a top five list of spiritual gifts, along with some thoughts about how best to use them in ministry and an opportunity to compare your results with the average.
My results: Top five gifts are exhortation, leadership, discernment, intercession, hospitality.
SHAPE stands for spiritual gifts, heart, aptitude, personality, and experience. This uses a variety of assessments and self-self-reflection tools to help you better understand how both your style and story shapes your ministry. The personality assessment is very similar to the DISC assessment.
Results: Spiritual gifts include exhortation, teaching, and evangelism. Personality style: Otter and Lion (DISC equivalent: Influence, Dominance)