How to Choose a Career or Degree That Suits Your Personality

What is the Holland Code Career Model?

In 1985 Dr John L. Holland, created the Holland Code Career Model, sometimes referred to as the Holland Hexagon or Simply Holland Codes. His theory explained that work and environments can be loosely divided into six groups as listed below.

  • Realistic (Doers): practical, physically active, hands-on, good with tools
  • Investigative (Thinkers):analytical, logical, scientific, inquisitive, explorative
  • Artistic (Creators): imaginative, creative, innovator, original, independent, impulsive
  • Social (Helpers): friendly, understanding, cooperative, generous, helping, patient, nurturing
  • Enterprising (Persuaders): Assertive, Self Confident, persuasive, extrovert, energetic, initiator, leader, leadership, persuading
  • Conventional (Organizers): Well-organized, methodical, conscientious, accurate, compliant
Holland understood that people might have interests in all these areas, but believed that people might primarily be attracted to 2 or 3 of the personality types.

These 2 or 3 letters would represent the Holland Code. Take the code 'RIE' for example. This would mean that you mostly resemble a Realistic type, while you are to a lesser extent Investigative type and to an even lesser extent Enterprising. You bear least resemblance to the other types not mentioned.

Why is knowing our Career Personality Important?

Holland believed that we are most satisfied when there is a degree of fit between our personality and the job we do and environment we work in.

So how can I establish my personal Holland Code or Career Personality?

If you want to take an in depth look at your Holland Code take an online assessment from a reputable provider of Career Interest Tests. I recommend the Career Interest Tests from

Once I have my Holland Code, how do I know which is the best career for me?

The report you receive from the Careerkey Career Interest Testmentioned above will include a list of specific careers and job titles that match your Holland career code. They also have a database and you can use your code to search through their list of 12,000 possible careers.



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