How Is Good&Co Different From Myers-Briggs?

myers-briggs personality test
/ by Good&Co Team

Chances are, you’ve probably heard of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). It’s used in everything from corporate recruiting to conversation fodder on an awkward first date. In fact, you may have even taken the test once or twice.

If you are indeed familiar with the assessment, then you may be wondering if Good&Co’s free personality test is different from Myers-Briggs. The short answer is yes, Good&Co is absolutely different from MBTI! To learn how and why we’re different, keep reading.

About MBTI

In 1944, Katherine Cooks Briggs and her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers published the Briggs Myers Type Indicator Handbook which explained the philosophy behind the MBTI test. Their theories derived from Carl Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist who was affiliated with Austrian neurologist Sigmund Freud. Myers and Briggs classified people into one of 16 types.

These types are measured along four binaries:

• Extraversion/Introversion
• Sensing/Intuition
• Thinking/Feeling
• Judging/Perceiving

According to Myers-Briggs, we all possess one of four binary traits, resulting in 16 possible personality types.

For example, ENFJ represents an extroverted (E) individual, who relies on intuition (N) and emotions (F – Feeling) when making decisions and solving problems. The J (Judging) pertains to the individual’s tendency for forward planning and dutifulness. Guess who’s an ENFJ? Jennifer Lawrence!

So, how exactly is Good&Co different from Myers-Briggs? You both have 16 personality types!

While it’s true that MBTI groups people into 16 personality types and we also have 16 different individual Personas, there are a few significant differences between our assessment and MBTI.

The MBTI classifies humans into binary categories: either extroverted or introverted, sensing or intuitive, thinking or feeling, and finally, judging or perceiving. However, as you’re undoubtedly aware, humans are much more complex than that. Here at Good&Co, we see each of the measured traits as a continuum that has a space for a wide-range of distinct personalities.

Just like snowflakes, each one of us is unique, special and beautiful. Why shouldn’t we have a personality test that reflects that?

We’re not just interested in whether you’re an extrovert or introvert. Instead, we’re interested in what kind of extrovert or introvert you are. Our tests are designed to measure what you contribute to specific situations, asking subtly in-depth questions that lead to a more holistic assessment of your personality.

myers-briggs free personality testNow, back to the number 16.

While Good&Co has 16 unique individual personas, we firmly believe that no single descriptor could possibly give a faithful account of a person’s character. Humans are simply too complex for that! That’s why we give you a trio of personas – we’ve determined that providing a blend of three personas offers a more detailed, concise and accurate overview of your personality.

Sure, 3 out of 16 may not sound like much, but it works out to a heck of a lot of permutations. 560 to be exact! In case you’re wondering, that’s 3200% more than the MBTI can give you.

You’re right! I am unique, special and beautiful. But how does your science compare to Myers-Briggs?

We’re glad you asked! Drawing on cutting edge developments in psychometrics, psychology, and behavioural neuroscience, our science team has developed a complex 8-dimension model comprising more traits than we can possibly count! While the MBTI often draws assumptions about how an individual’s personality impacts their work style, at Good&Co, we do not settle for vague speculations.

When designing our test, we were conscious of the fact that not all companies and people are compatible, and so we included the scientifically proven notion of culture fit into our algorithm. Our model incorporates crucial work-relevant elements of personality – things like emotional intelligence or attention to detail. These are traits that most other models, including the MBTI, fail to assess.

Our test aims to not only show you your ideal job, but more importantly, what kind of company you should be working for.

The MBTI entirely ignores an extremely important aspect of a person’s character: their natural tendency to experience emotions like anger, anxiety, or depression. Framed as neuroticism, this personality dimension constitutes one of the five pillars of another extremely popular psychometric model, the five factor model (FFM), sometimes referred to as the Big Five.

Given that these traits are quite relevant to your workplace needs, Good&Co’s model measures people’s natural inclination to experience a variety of emotions, not only those that are potentially negative, but also the positive ones, such as cheerfulness.

Hm. I’m almost convinced that you guys are better than MBTI… I want more science though.

Okay! In addition to the aforementioned differences, Good&Co’s psychometric model differs from MBTI on many other technical levels. Case in point: the Myers-Briggs duo created the MBTI drawing solely from their day-to-day observations and an in-depth analysis of Jung’s work.

While there’s certainly nothing wrong with daily observations and literature reviews per se, conclusions reached by these means need to be properly evaluated to be considered scientifically valid. Thanks to the joint efforts of Good&Co’s experienced psychometricians, skilled techies, and quirky content gurus, our approach to measuring both human personality and organizational culture is both scientifically robust and accessible to the general public.

“Most personality psychologists regard the MBTI as little more than an elaborate Chinese fortune cookie.” —Robert Hogan

By drawing from the latest developments in psychometrics, organizational psychology, and behavioural neuroscience, we have made our test as comprehensive (and approachable!) as possible.

So are you trying to say that the MBTI is misleading?

The MBTI has been widely criticised for the predictability of its questions and a lack of test-retest reliability, meaning that individuals completing the test at two different times might obtain two different results. Some have also questioned its construct validity, positing that the MBTI scales do not measure what they’re designed to measure. Famous psychometric specialist Robert Hogan has said, “Most personality psychologists regard the MBTI as little more than an elaborate Chinese fortune cookie.” While we certainly love fortune cookies, we definitely don’t want them to determine the results of our quizzes! For this reason, we always validate our questions, ensuring that our quizzes produce consistent, reliable results.

Woah! Myers Briggs is totally a relic from World War II, like a rotary phone or my grandmother’s perfume! I’m going to join the 21st century and download the Good&Co app!

Excellent! We’re thrilled to have you join the Good&Co community.


Agnieszka Zbieranska is a business psychologist and psychometrician based in London.

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