How Where You Fall on the '5-Factor Model' of Personality Influences Your Work Persona

Woman and man looking at a computer screen


Profile Picture
Heather K Adams734
Content + Copy Writer
April 14, 2024 at 8:45PM UTC

Personality tests abound on the internet, from the official (Myers-Briggs) to the fizzier ("What Your Favorite Boy Band Says About You”). With countless tests to take and even more results to receive, some psychologists are making the argument that a more minimalist approach to personality types is needed.  

Known as The 5-Factor Model, this categorization of personality types, as recently depicted in Inc., groups test takers into one of five possible categories. We’ve summed up the different archetypes below; although it’s possible you may feel like a combination of types, how strongly you lean toward one versus the other might just determine what kind of work suits you best.

The 5-Factor Personality Types (And Their Ideal Work Environment) 

1. The worker bee

You folks share a hard-working, organized sensibility that serves you well in life as well as at work — as long as you keep it in check. Don't try to force your list-making habits onto others. Instead, let this quality work for you. You excel in careers where being hardcore about the details is essential. Avoid jobs that play more fast and loose with scheduling, too. You love structure.

2. The hostess

While extroverts don't always have to be the star of the show, you certainly don't mind if that's the way the cookie winds up crumbling. You love to talk and socialize, and you make friends wherever you go. Find work that lets you put this trait to good use, like in sales or customer service roles, rather than something that keeps you tied to a desk or screen all day. 

3. The bleeding heart

You're the one a friend knows to call when her car breaks down because you're always happy to lend a hand. You probably seek getting involved with  the causes you like to support versus viewing work as simply a check to cut. Being in a job that feels meaningless in terms of helping people would no doubt make you miserable. Your ideal career involves serving others. Non-profits and charity organizations are the way to go.

4. The free spirit

You love traveling, creating, exploring new interests and growing your mind through experience. While to some you might seem flaky as you move from job to job or even from country to country, you know what you're doing. You love work that engages your curiosity, and you do great in careers that involve wearing a lot of hats and learning new things. Try to avoid jobs that bore you and instead seek work that lets your creative brilliance shine.

5. The worrywart

You like to double check your to-do list. Fine, triple check. But you know what? You've never botched an assignment or missed a deadline. You shudder at the idea of even being late to work. If you can channel your natural anxiety into a healthy outlet, such as a career that involves an aptitude for precision and an ability to navigate red tape, you're golden. Working for the government or similar official agencies is right up your alley.


Don’t miss out on articles like these. Sign up!

Why women love us:

  • Daily articles on career topics
  • Jobs at companies dedicated to hiring more women
  • Advice and support from an authentic community
  • Events that help you level up in your career
  • Free membership, always