Big Five Personality Test

The Big Five personality test is also known as the OCEAN model or the Five-Factor Model (FFM). This test will give you a more detailed perspective of your personality based on five categories of traits.

Read on to discover more about the most accepted and researched model available.

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What is the Big Five personality test?

For decades, researchers from all over the world put their heads together to find out which words people use to describe themselves or another person. The researchers discovered that each time they did describe someone, they used traits or characteristics that could be clustered. Eventually, they came up with the Big Five personality test and clustered all of these traits into five categories: Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Neuroticism.

For each category, you are able to score high, low or somewhere in between. There is no such thing as a bad answer. Eventually, the goal of this test is to find or create a working environment that fits your personality best.

What are the five different personality traits?

There are exactly five categories of traits. In each category, we can fit a bunch of characteristics and traits that are related to that specific category. For example, characteristics such as self-discipline and the tendency to be organized are related to the category “conscientiousness”.

Let’s take a look at each category of the Big Five personality test.


Openness measures to what extent people are open to experience new things.

People who have a high level of openness are relatively imaginative, full of new ideas and curious about new experiences or unconventional ideas. People who have a lower level tend to prefer the same way of working and avoid any unfamiliar situations.

Some examples of common traits:Imaginative, intellectual, curious, adventurous, daring.


Conscientiousness can be described as the tendency to act socially acceptable while being mindful of the people all around you. Therefore, people who are conscientious are often capable of taking a management (leadership) position within a company.

People who have a high level of conscientiousness tend to be more organized and are determined to pursue a certain goal. People who are more unconscientious are more likely to procrastinate, be disorganized and tend to make impulsive decisions.  

Some examples of common traits:Organized, persistent, controlled, self-disciplined, structural.


Extraversion means that people feel more socially comfortable. They prefer variation in many situations and are often spontaneous. By contrast, we have introversion. People who are introvert tend to be quieter and reserved. They prefer to work on their own and don’t feel a specific need for social contact as much as extravert people do.

Some examples of common traits:Talkative, spontaneous, socially confident, communicative, vivid.


This category shows how well people get along with others. It determines the “friendliness” of a person. People who score high on this category tend to be more friendly to others and are capable of working with others in a respectful and mannered way. People who score low on this category are often more competitive and can be more straightforward.

Some examples of common traits:Kind, sympathetic, trusting, unselfish, cheerful.


This last category of the Big Five determines the emotional stability of a person. People who score high on this category are neurotic people. They tend to get angry or worried more easily. In general, it shows lower confidence and comfort in one’s own skin. People who score low in this category are emotionally stable and therefore more relaxed. They feel a lesser impact of any negativity and deal with it better.

Some examples of common traits:Unconfident, sensitive, worried, self-critical, unstable.

The benefit of the Big Five personality test

Everyone is born with a certain set of traits. There are no bad nor good scores in this test. This means that for every person, there is a certain path in their career that fits their personality best. With this test, you can determine the many possibilities in your future career. For example, if you score high on extraversion, don’t choose a job with little social contact like an accountant. Being a representative or salesperson is most likely a better match for you looking at your traits and capabilities.

For an employer, it’s important to use the Big Five personality test as a guide to filling in a certain position in the organization. You will need to find a person that fits your business culture and the respective position. Doing this will benefit your organisation and besides that, the employee itself by adapting the working environment to their needs.

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