In developing the Myers-Briggs assessment, Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother, Katharine Briggs, aimed to make Carl Jung’s theory of psychological type understandable and useful in people’s everyday lives.
The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the ways individuals are oriented toward the external world, take in information, and draw conclusions about what they perceive.
The MBTI® assessment help people identify their preferences on four dichotomies:
- Extraversion or Introversion (focusing attention and getting energy)
- Sensing or Intuition (taking in information)
- Thinking or Feeling (making decisions)
- Judging or Perceiving (dealing with the external world)
The various combinations of those four preferences result in 16 distinct personality types – all of which bring an equally valuable perspective and equally important contributions to human interactions. But a type is more than just the sum of four preferences. People’s four-letter MBTI® type code is a simple way of signifying the interaction of the preferences. Learning about this interaction, known as type dynamics, is an important part of understanding and make the best use of MBTI® results.
Used with permission from Consulting Psychologist Press.