College career counselors often ask me to recommend assessments, which is kind of funny I never took any kind of test to inform the decision about a major or a career. I’d taken AP psychology in high school and did well in it, and so I picked that. I didn’t take a test when I graduated from Northwestern University either. I just knew that pursuing psychology would take at least four more years of school, and I wasn’t having any of that. I wanted to go into the business world right away, and since I wasn’t trained to do much, I landed in an entry-level public relations job at a large agency in New York City.
Fifteen years later, I received the opportunity to take YouScience’s two-hour online assessment, Latitude. Essentially, Latitude uncovers what you’re wired to do well and why. The assessment’s series of five to 12 minute exercises reveal 14 of the aptitudes most important to college and career plus the types of work you’ll find most satisfying.
Latitude provided me with loads of meaty material as well as a summary that included these highlights: When it comes to idea generation, I’m a brainstormer. I’m able to come up with multiple examples when describing something or with multiple activities to engage in. I’m also an investigator. This means that I enjoy acquiring new information and learning how facts influence each other. My high sequential reasoning ability lets me automatically shuffle and organize large amounts of information in my head and easily organize my thoughts and learned information in a methodical way.
Halfway between introverted and extroverted, I work best when I have a balance between collaborating with others and focusing on my area of expertise. I’m equally comfortable leading and following depending on the situation. Well, that explains why I always confused the Myers-Briggs folks!
Because I like to advise others and am apparently good at it, Latitude recommended that I pursue the fields of psychology, training and development, and communications.
Guess what? That’s pretty much how I’ve spent the last 20 years.
Latitude: Definitely Better Late Than Never
My career evolution was a happy accident, hitting all of the areas of natural strength that Latitude identified. But my life would have been much easier if I had taken Latitude sooner. I would have been able to make more confident, better informed decisions about areas of study and careers. Due to the assessment’s uncanny accuracy, I might have ended up in the same place – but I wouldn’t have had to rely on fate to get there.
Understanding why I am the way I am – why I find certain tasks invigorating and others frustrating, is helping me to even further hone my career aspirations. My career probably has a good 30+ years left and I’m going to be glad to have Latitude as a partner every step of the way.