Your personality can not only affect your career choice but also how you perform and interact with others at your workplace.
To help you have an in-depth understanding of how your personality affects your career, here is an overview of the five personality traits and their influence on your career.
What's in this guide?
The Five Big Personality Traits and How They Can Affect Your Career
1. Openness to Experience
People high on openness to experience are creative, curious, and open to change. They have diverse interests and are constantly scanning the environment for innovative ideas. They tend to focus more on how much a job is fulfilling rather than how much they earn. Leaving a dissatisfying job for a new adventure or in search of more fulfilling opportunities is not a big deal for people open to experience.
This group has a balanced life. They put as much effort into their career development as they do in their hobbies and passion. For this reason, they are more likely to be disadvantaged than those who are completely work-oriented.
When this personality trait is too strong, an individual tends to frequently share ideas without thinking them through. They might introduce a change without a concrete plan for its implementation. They’ll avoid questions, warnings, or even suggestions aimed at grilling their ideas and assessing their project’s feasibility.
Also, high levels of openness to experience have a challenge with saving money. Because they make decisions on impulse without really giving their ideas a thorough thought, they tend to spend impulsively on things they are passionate about.
Conscientious individuals are achievement-oriented. They are highly organized, detail-oriented, and highly productive. This personality trait is exhibited by people who are dependable and careful planners.
They undertake a systematic approach to accomplish tasks. Once they set a goal, they don’t take their eyes off it until they achieve it. For that reason, highly conscientious people make good employees.
People high on this personality trait rarely achieve extraordinary results. This is because they stick to the plan to the latter without taking into consideration any emerging evidence. Since they rush towards achieving results, when new evidence comes up, there are high chances that they’ll disregard it since changing the plan is not an option.
Individuals low in conscientiousness are more likely to earn more than those high in conscientiousness. In addition, they are more likely to ask for a salary raise than those with high levels of openness to experience, extraversion, and agreeableness.
Extraverted individuals are social and outgoing. They are more likely to impress the interviewing panel, connect with colleagues fast and stand out to their supervisors. This group is socially confident, assertive, talkative, and outgoing.
Usually, they renew their energy by interacting with others. They jump on any chance to mingle with others and often grab any opportunity to participate in social events.
High-extraverted individuals yawn for approval and acceptance. They love attention and public acknowledgment of their efforts at work.
People with a high score on extraversion work well as salespeople and even managers as they enjoy meeting new people, establishing relationships, and persuading and influencing others. Naturally, they are team players at the workplace.
An extroverted employee needs to be reminded of deadlines constantly. They rarely pay attention to details. There are high chances that they’ll be carried away with social events like meetings, parties, or committees. Thus, they must be checked on frequently.
Because of their chatty nature and need to be liked, colleagues may perceive them as insincere and even superficial.
Highly agreeable individuals are easily liked and admired by others. They are easy to get along with in work projects. Also, agreeable employees are sympathetic towards their colleagues.
Agreeable individuals follow the rules and regulations to the latter. They are well-mannered and have higher job performance. They are also less likely to be involved in any at-work conflict or workplace accidents.
Those who score high on agreeableness are very positive. This tends to hinder them from exploring the negative aspects of a situation. Thus, this could lead to flawed decisions that don’t take into account both the negative and positive aspects of a problem.
Highly agreeable team leaders tend to jump into helping team members accomplish a task without giving them the opportunity to explore and work through a challenge. Team members might take it that they are incapable of solving complicated challenges. They might interpret the behavior as a lack of trust in their abilities.
Also, agreeable individuals trust easily, and hence there are high chances they’ll overlook contracts or work agreements. They always assume that people have good intentions. This could lead to challenges later on.
Neurotic personality in moderation is a desirable trait. However, people with high levels of neuroticism exhibit a lack of focus. They also find daily life schedules extremely stressful. They are prone to worry a lot and find it hard to settle in one job.
Neurotic employees have negative thoughts, which lead to negative emotions. These individuals experience low job satisfaction. They also can’t cope with workplace demands, especially the fast-paced work environment. This makes neurotics more susceptible to employee burnout.
On the bright side, neurotics obsess ceaselessly. This makes them hard workers who anticipate challenges. They can easily project outcomes, meet deadlines and deliver projects successfully.
Apart from these personality traits, other factors like work ethic, training, performance on the job, and skill set also affect your career. Therefore, attending programs that empower you in your field of interest can go a long way in building your personality and equipping you for the job market. If you are in the health and fitness niche, training such as health coach programs can build your skillset, which equally plays a big role in your career growth.
The five personality traits above affect your career in different ways. The point is not how much you rank in each but how each of the traits complements each other. When you are aware of the interplay of the five traits in building your personality, you can actively work towards building your strengths and modifying negative behaviors to help grow your career.
The overall goal is to be aware of the traits that are detrimental and those that are beneficial to your work. With this awareness, you can find positions that better suit your personality, which will lead to job satisfaction and even more success.