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The Sherwood Career Fulfilment Inventory

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Technical requirements

This inventory is designed to consider personal characteristics that relate to an employees preferred ways of working. It is designed to assess their level of fulfilment in relation to their current job or work-based placement role.

Primarily it is used within FE, HE and by training providers or larger employers as part of their total skills programmes or recruitment drives. The TAPI can be used can help to determine how a candidates take in and process information within their peer group. Whether this be other members of their chosen course or other employees working in similar job roles. It allows you to evaluate the fit between a profile you choose and the functioning of the particular candidate and is web-delivered.

Profiles are typically built by testing groups of existing candidates who are already on a training course or working within a similar job role. For example, profiles can be built for existing high-flyers, the average and those who are not performing well.

The inventory been developed from the ideas of Carl Jung about normal personality functioning. This is concerned with the different ways people take in and process information, make decisions and respond to the situations in which they find themselves. The work was taken further by Myers and Briggs, leading to the development and refining of the MBTI (a complex and widely used inventory that leads to the categorisation of people into different types). This work has been particularly influential as a resource for personal development, to enable greater insight into one’s personality and interactions of this with work-related variables.

This short test is not intended as a replacement for the MBTI (and individuals wanting more in-depth understanding should be encouraged to see a consultant qualified to use this assessment tool). The Career Fulfilment measure is a screening tool to give individuals some first indications of the aspects of their personalities that they might wish to optimise in their occupations.

This test leads to scores on eight variables that indicate preferred ways of functioning. The eight scales may be represented as four pairs of scores, shown as follows:











Reflective (cool)




Emotive (warm)






On each continuum, the respondent’s relative weighting indicates his / her preferred style. If the person has a high score on one side, and low score on the other, she / he will be likely to ‘fit’ the descriptions below. High scores on both sides of a continuum indicate either a mature individual who is able to be flexible and modify his / her responses depending on the context and requirements of the activity, or in less mature individuals someone who is seeking to please rather than give an accurate response. Low scores on both sides of a continuum indicate either a person who lacks personal insight or someone with lower levels of self esteem.


Sub-Scale Definitions




Extroversion –


The first scale, extroversion – introversion, gives an indication of the person’s sources of energy. Respondents with high Extroversion scores gain energy from their social interactions with other individuals or groups of people. They are likely to choose activities that involve others, and if they are required to spend time working alone, will need to seek out others to counterbalance that. They are likely to find periods of isolation difficult, and may not like to be surrounded by relative silence. They will thrive in group discussions, may like to take the lead in activities, and would have the capacity to develop their public presentation skills. Respondents with high Introversion scores gain energy from sources within themselves and prefer to engage in more solitary activities. They tend to enjoy reading or craft-related hobbies where they work alone for periods of time. If they are required to spend time with others, they will need periods of quiet to counterbalance that. They will not necessarily participate actively in group discussions (though they might listen intently) and may find it difficult to do presentations on ‘sell’ their skills and attributes.




Practical -


The second scale is an indication of the way in which the person takes in first impressions of a situation, and the features of an environment that they are most likely to notice and respond to. Respondents with high Practical scores may be described as having their ‘feet on the ground’, and are more likely to enjoy ‘hand-on’ activities, with a focus on objective reality and getting on with tasks. They will do better with routine tasks where attention to detail is important. Respondents with high Imaginative scores are more likely to be the ‘ideas’ people who are creative and see possibilities or a variety of different ways of undertaking a task. They are likely to find routine tasks tedious, and may like more flexible working arrangements.




Reflective -


The third scale gives an indication of the way the individual typically makes decisions. The person with a Reflective style will tend to make decisions in a logical way, weighing up the facts carefully, and taking their time thinking about the options. A respondent with a very high score here (and correspondingly low score on the other side of the scale) may find great difficulty when needing to make decisions, leading to delays and the potential of missed opportunities. Respondents with high Emotive scores will tend to make decisions on what ‘feels right’ to them, and this may lead to quite speedy decision-making, without necessarily considering all options. These decisions will be made with more of a focus on the impact on or influence of people whom they value.




Organised -


The fourth scale indicates the level of organisation that would characterise the persons preferred way of working. Respondents with high scores on the Organised scale value attention to detail and careful planning. They are likely to prefer carefully arranged files and tools, and their workspaces are likely to be clear of clutter. Respondents with high scores on the Easygoing scale would find ‘organising’ tasks tedious and may be able to work in situations where there is less order allowing for flexible responses to task demands.





The higher of the two scores on each of the above four scales is used to create a four-letter code, indicating a personality type. Summary characteristics are available for each of the resultant 16 types, and these may then be used to identify career-related preferences.


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