In this article, we will compile 20 unusual, out of the box personality questions you can use to get to know someone a bit better – and the best thing is you can use them both for employment and marketing purposes. You can also adjust them to any type of online quiz or questionnaire.
If you google a personality test you will get 354 million results. We solve these tests hoping to learn something new about ourselves – or more often, confirm our own beliefs about who we are. But how do you figure out another person?
There are dozens of scientific attempts at cracking the right formula for revealing other person’s capabilities, goals, and motives. Their reliability has been contested in the scientific community, but the consensus is that, while not 100% accurate, these tests can give you a general idea about the person you’re talking to.
Why You Need a Personality Test
If You Are an Employer
If you’re looking for ways to get to know your customers, scroll further down. If you run your own business and want to hire your first employees, stay here. In this situation, you probably feel an immense pressure to get it right. Your budget may be limited, the future is still uncertain, and you want to make sure that the newcomers are capable of helping you grow your business.
When you’re preparing an interview or questionnaire for your prospective employee, you want to figure out three things:
- Their capabilities
- Their ability to handle the workload
- Their ability to fit in or adjust to the company’s culture
There are no right or wrong answers to personality questions – at least not in general. But there are right or wrong personalities for specific companies, job positions, and teams. The way you are going to assess the applicants’ results depends entirely on you.
You can always use some of the proven and widely circulated personality tests.
Kolbe tests focus on person’s instincts and lead to a four-number result which is supposed to represent their natural way of taking action in four different behavior patterns.
- Fact Finder − gathering and sharing information
- Follow Thru − arranging and designing
- Quick Start − dealing with risk and uncertainty
- Implementor − handling space and tangibles
In this article, we explain why this type of test is great for hiring in the marketing sector.
The Myer-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)
This personality test is one of the most popular personality assessment tests. It focuses on Jungian principles of sensation, intuition, feeling and thinking to conclude how people perceive the world around them and make decisions.
This test focuses on the traits of dominance, inducement, submission, and compliance (DISC), and it is often used in the hiring process, especially in companies with large teams.
Process Communication Model
Developed by NASA, the Process Communication Model (PCM) personality questions group people into six personality types – harmonizers, thinkers, rebels, Imagineers, persisters, or promoters.
The Personality Assessment System
Developed by CIA psychologist, this test assesses personality profiles and focuses on person’s intelligence and skills.
However, these tests can be costly and their reliability may vary – so the best solution is to stick to your own customized personality questions.
If You Are Doing Market Research
Although they are not to be taken as seriously as science-based surveys and questionnaires, online quizzes and surveys are a great way to capture your customers’ attention, engage with them and get to know them better.
“Take this quiz and we’ll tell you which major pop star you are” can tell you a lot about people’s purchasing habits or taste in fashion – which can be incredibly useful for an online retailer. In this article, we look into some sample quiz questions that can lead your customers through the sales funnel. If you want to conduct a bit more serious research, consult this guide.
If you want something entirely new, continue reading.
How to Create a Personality Questionnaire
The greatest problem with any personality questions is that we are asking people to assess themselves. As we stated in the beginning, these assessments are not always realistic – some people think too great of themselves, some underestimate their capabilities. This is why it is important that you avoid questions where you directly ask people to rate themselves – covert personality questions are way more informative of the way people think and behave.
Personality questions can come in several forms:
Statement-based personality questions
With this type of question, you offer a respondent a statement, such as “I remain calm in stressful situations.” The answers are like a 5-degree scale, ranging from ‘strongly disagree’ to ‘strongly agree’. While these type of tests are great for producing quantifiable data, they won’t give you a deeper insight into the way a person thinks or behaves. So we’ll skip these.
Close-ended personality questions
With this type of questions, you offer several options to the respondents.
Open-ended personality questions
These questions are usually used in one-on-one conversations and interviews, and seldom in quizzes and online surveys and questionnaires. However, they are probably the most useful when you’re assessing the potential employee’s personality, because they offer a finessed insight into the way people reason.
We will give you suggestions in the form of open-ended questions and explain why each of them is beneficial for you, and we’ll offer you a few suggestions for the creation of a close-ended question. Before that, you can also learn more about other types of survey questions.
1. Who is your role model?
This answer will tell you a lot about a person’s priorities, aspirations, and motives.
You can ask a close-ended personality question by offering a choice and asking which person you appreciate the most? Each choice could direct towards a certain tendency or priority for a person.
2. Who knows you the best?
This answer will tell you a lot about the person’s openness and willingness to form close relationships. If their own mom knows them best, you are likely dealing with an introvert – if a sister and a friend know them best, you are likely talking to someone who is willing to get to know people and bond with them in spite of differences and disagreements.
3. What would your friends say about you?
This personality question reveals how other people perceive the person you’re talking to.
You can turn it into a close-ended question like this.
4. What is the question people ask you most often?
This is an interesting personality question that can reveal even more than the previous one. For example, if the person is often asked for advice, you can conclude you are talking to someone who is seen as helpful or reliable. If people are often asking them why they are so nervous, it could raise a red flag.
5. What is the thing you’d never say to another person?
This question reveals a person’s boundaries within the group.
6. What is your greatest achievement?
This tells you a lot about the things the person perceives as success and prioritizes in life. Turn it into a close-ended personality question like this.
7. What is your greatest failure?
This will tell you more about the respondent’s past, mistakes and the way they deal with them.
8. What did you learn from your greatest failure?
This personality question reveals whether a person deals with a failure in a constructive manner. If the question cannot be “downsized” to choices, feel free to add add it in open-ended form.
9. What is the thing you’re most proud of?
Similarly like the achievement question, this will reveal the way the respondent feels about themselves, their decisions and life in general.
10. What would you like to change about yourself?
This is an interesting question because it is basically asking the person about their greatest flaw – without sounding intimidating or potentially judgemental.
11. If something in your house breaks, what is the first thing you do?
This will show you how a person deals with problems and the way they are likely to act if they encounter an obstacle at work.
12. What is the greatest obstacle you’re facing right now?
This can provide you with valuable insight into the person’s current situation in life and the problems they are seeking to solve.
13. How do you like to “waste” your time?
Needless to say, what you do when you do nothing speaks volumes about your temper and personal interests.
14. What is the ritual that helps you calm down?
This could be useful if you want to check whether your office environment would be a fitting place for a prospective employee – or how to target customers with ads for tourist destinations.
15. What is your favorite place in town?
Do they like busy places or a quiet walk in the park? A person could lie if you ask them directly what kind of an office environment they prefer. This is a covert question seeking a similar answer, but the respondent is more likely to be honest.
16. What do you prefer – a book, a movie or a theater play?
This can reveal a person’s preferred method of communication and gathering information.
17. What was the happiest period of your life?
Reveals a person’s priorities and the measure of happiness and success.
18. What is your most treasured memory from childhood?
Is it a goal scored for their local football team, or time spent with the family at their favorite sea resort? This question is even more intimate and revealing than the one about the greatest achievements, because it looks into the experience that formed someone as a person.
19. What was your favorite game when you were a child?
Did they enjoy soccer or hide-and-seek? Did they rather spend time alone? Once again, this will tell you more than a direct question that could prompt a person to adjust the answers in accordance with the job requirements. This personality question reveals the challenge we enjoy the most, as well as the way we choose to deal with it.
20. What is the greatest injustice you’ve lived through?
This can also be a great question for determining whether a person is a cultural fit for you. It tells you something about their worldview, beliefs, attitudes, boundaries, and no-gos.
We got you covered – the only thing left is putting these questions into a quiz or questionnaire. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to take hours and days to create dozens of customized tests – all you need is a content builder with pre-designed templates and a simple menu. You can find it here!