Find a Career to Match Your Personality


Are you ready for a new job? Consider preparing for a career that better complements your interests.

By Charyn Pfeuffer    

Are you thinking about pursuing a new career but don't know where or how to begin looking?

Assessing your personality traits could be a great first step.

In her book, "Career Match," career coach Shoya Zichy, notes that identifying your specific personality type can help you:

  • Identify the type of work that will inspire and exhilarate you
  • Determine the kind of boss and work environment you need to thrive
  • Confirm the rightness of the path you're on - or help you find a better one

Asking yourself questions like "What are my strengths and weaknesses?" and "What kind of work will best complement my personality?" could be key to finding the right career for you.

To assist in your career hunt, we've highlighted five personality traits with corresponding career matches and education options.

#1 - You are a Stickler for Details

Possible career match: Are you a conscientious number cruncher? If so, a career as an accountant could be a great match for your interests. Accountants work heavily with numbers and spreadsheets in order to ensure that a company's financials are in order. This career might also involve offering budget analysis and financial and investment planning.

Recommended degree: If a career as an accountant is appealing to you, you may want to consider earning a b

Click to Find the Right Accounting Program.

Average earning potential: The average annual salary for accountants is $68,960.*

#2 - You Enjoy Being Part of a Team

Possible career match: Health care is a team effort and registered nurses (RNs) are compassionate players in the field of providing medical care. Beyond the scope of bedside care, nurses usually work with physicians and colleagues to help treat patients, perform diagnostic tests, and follow up with patients.

Recommended degree: Earning an associate degree in nursing (ADN), which could take as little as two years to complete, could help you pursue this team-friendly career. As a nursing student, you might study anatomy and physiology, nutrition, and pharmacology.*

Click to Find the Right Nursing Program.

Average earning potential: The average annual salary for registered nurses is $67,720.*

#3 - You Want to Make a Difference

Possible career match: If you want to make a difference in people's lives, consider a career as a K-12 teacher. Using classroom presentations or individual instructions, teachers develop student's minds and habits to help them succeed in both academic and social environments. Teachers also plan, assign lessons, grade tests, and maintain classroom discipline.

Recommended degree: If you're interested in molding the minds of today's youth, consider earning a bachelor's degree and completing an approved teacher education program, which is a typical requirement for K-12 teachers.*

Click to Find the Right Education Program.

Average earning potential: The average annual salaries for elementary, middle, and secondary school teachers are $54,330, $54,880, and $55,990, respectively.*

#4 - You Like Working Alone

Possible career match: If you're a motivated self-starter and can work with minimal supervision, consider a career as a medical transcriptionist. Medical transcriptionists generally pore over dictated recordings created by doctors and other health care professionals. Paying close attention to detail, medical transcriptionists usually transcribe the recordings into a variety of reports.

Recommended degree: If you'd like to make a difference in the lives of patients, think about an< associate's degree in medical transcription. If you're not well-versed in medical terminology 101, don't be deterred - this program generally covers anatomy and medical terminology and could take as little as two years.*<

Click to Find the Right Medical Transcription Program.

Average earning potential: The average annual salary for medical transcriptionists is $33,530.*

#5 - You Like to Figure Out How Things Work

Possible career match: If the thought of sloppy code makes you cringe, a job as a software developer may be a good match. These analytical thinkers generally use math and computer science to find and fix tech problems and create computer applications.

Recommended degree: There are several educational paths to this career - a bachelor's in IT is one of the options. For those who wish to specialize, there are niche courses available in computer programming to supplement a degree.*

Click to Find the Right IT Program.

Average earning potential: The average annual salary for software developers (applications) is $90,410.*

*All salary information, educational requirements, and recommended degrees are provided by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2010.

Next Article: Earn a degree without quitting your job »

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