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Strong Interest Inventory: Differences Between Adjacent Types

As you look at the hexagon for the Strong Interest Inventory, you'll notice that some letters are closer than others. This reflects Holland's theory that some occupations are more similar than others. So Realistic and Conventional jobs are more similar than Realistic and Social, for example. But what are the differences between those scales that are closest to each other on the hexagon?

This issue we'll look at two sets of adjacent occupations to see what's different.

Let's take Enterprising and Conventional jobs. Generally, Enterprising jobs require greater use of data, talking, hearing, dealing with people, and abstract and creative activities versus routine, concrete activities. Similarly, Conventional jobs rate higher in finger dexterity, repetitive or continuous processes, and seeing. Finally, they rate higher in activities involving set limits, tolerances, or standards, as well as scientific and technical activities versus business contact.

Conventional jobs score higher than Realistic jobs on clerical aptitude, dealing with people, repetitive or continuous activities, and communication of data versus activities with things.

If we compare Realistic to Conventional jobs, the former has higher ratings for specific vocational training, spatial perception, strength, and measurable or verifiable criteria.

As you can imagine, many jobs combine aspects from several scales, so they are a blend of types. Of course, none of the above means that only Conventional jobs require seeing or Enterprising jobs require talking. It merely shows some of the criteria that separate jobs into the different categories. Once again, the most important aspect is matching your interests and abilities to your job.


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