Guide: 16 Personality Types
Updated 20 March 2023
When searching for a job, many factors might affect your decision on where to apply and accept an offer. You might consider the industry, salary, role and responsibilities, culture, work-life balance or core values. Your personality type is another factor you might consider. This encompasses how you interact with others, process information and make decisions in the workplace.
One personality test many people use when making decisions about career opportunities is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). The MBTI questionnaire provides a general framework for understanding your personality, including how you perceive the world and your decision-making process.
Your personality type is made up of four letters, one chosen from four categories:
Introverted vs extraverted: How you expend energy
Sensing vs intuition: How you receive information
Thinking vs feeling: How you make decisions
Judging vs perceiving: How you see the world
This guide will briefly describe each of the 16 personality types, followed by jobs that might be a good fit for each.
The 16 personality types
ISTJ: Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Judging
The ISTJ personality type is generally practical and responsible. They rely on logical decision-making, accomplishing tasks in an orderly and organised fashion. ISTJs typically enjoy a neat and arranged space at home and work. ISTJs highly value traditions, loyalty and order, making it sometimes difficult to be flexible during times of change.
Best careers for ISTJ personalities:
ISFJ: Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Judging
Conventional and grounded, ISFJs respect and strive to uphold established structures and create and maintain orderly environments. They have a strong work ethic that includes serving others and are dedicated to their duties. ISFJs are conscientious and methodical workers unsatisfied until the job is done.
Best careers for ISFJ personalities:
INFJ: Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Judging
This is the rarest of the 16 personalities. The INFJ type is highly insightful about people’s needs, motivations and concerns. INFJs often find value in relationships with others. While often artistic, creative and complex, INFJs are also deeply caring and gentle. Often referred to as an advocate, INFJs find meaning in work that directly helps others.
Best careers for INFJ personalities:
INTJ: Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking Judging
The INTJ type is guided by reason and logic. They are driven by gaining and using knowledge. They are highly confident and want to reform and improve the world around them. While self-confident, INTJs can be uncomfortable in large groups or among people they don’t know well. They prefer to discuss ideas and facts rather than engage in superficial small talk.
Best careers for INTJ personalities:
ISTP: Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving
The ISTP personality type is typically quiet and observant. When a problem arises, they are tolerant, flexible and quick to find a solution. Organised and practical, the ISTP values data, logic and facts to understand issues. ISTPs often find meaningful work making and creating things, finding ways to make things work and learning along the way.
Best careers for ISTP personalities:
ISFP: Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Perceiving
The ISFP personality type is usually friendly and quiet. They enjoy observing and taking in the environment around them. ISFP typically prefer autonomy, working in their own space and completing tasks on their schedule. ISFPs highly value loyalty and commitment in their relationships. Harmony is also important to ISFPs, avoiding confrontation and keeping their opinions to themselves.
Best Careers for ISFP Personalities:
INFP: Introverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Perceiving
Because INFPs are highly curious, inquisitive and innovative individuals, they are usually optimistic in their worldview and can be inspiring team members. INFPs comprise just 2% of the population. They are highly creative, easily find connections in hidden patterns and enjoy abstract thinking.
Best careers for INFP personalities:
INTP: Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Perceiving
The INTP personality type tends to be quiet and contained. They enjoy abstract ideas and deep thought about theories over interaction with others. INTPs desire logical answers to questions or problems that arise in their environment. Often sceptical and analytical, INTPs are great problem-solvers, helpful when certain business issues present themselves. They are often highly creative, intelligent and attentive.
Best careers for INTP personalities:
ESTP: Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving
The ESTP personality type is often referred to as entrepreneurial. They are energetic, pragmatic and flexible. They eagerly search for fast results, often taking risks to come up with the best solutions. ESTPs often do before they think, fixing and adapting their processes as they go. ESTPs enjoy a fast-paced lifestyle by living “in the moment” and spending time around groups of people.
Best careers for ESTP personalities:
ESFP: Extraverted, Sensing, Feeling, Perceiving
Often seen as the entertainer, the ESFP personality type is outgoing, friendly and generous. They enjoy spending time around others and spreading excitement and joy at home and work. While practical and realistic in their work, they also value having fun achieving their goals. They are energetic and flexible, encouraging others along the way.
Best careers for ESFP personalities:
ENFP: Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, Perceiving
The ENFP personality type can be powerful in many workplaces. The ENFP type is generally innovative, inspiring and often unafraid of taking risks. ENFPs comprise approximately 8% of the general population and include more women than men. They are highly perceptive when understanding how individuals and groups function, making them natural leaders inside organisations. ENFPs want excitement, enjoy abstract and experiential learning, and look for maximum potential in their career experiences and others.
Best careers for ENFP personalities:
ENTP: Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinking, Perceiving
The ENTP personality is ideal for entrepreneurial thinking, whether ENTPs own their own business or innovate within an organisation. ENTPs often struggle to meet deadlines and find it difficult to work within hierarchies, which can restrict their innovative talents. ENTPs prefer to focus on the “big idea” and resist routine and repetitive tasks. Instead, they prefer highly conceptual work, problem-solving and leaving the details to others.
Best careers for ENTP personalities:
Related: Psychometric Testing: What to Expect
ESTJ: Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Judging
ESTJs make great executives, valuing tradition and order. Strong character traits are important to ESTJs who respect honesty and dedication in themselves and others. ESTJs are practical decision-makers looking for ways to quickly and effectively see results. Organised and logical, ESTJs are good at both creating and implementing plans. They do not shy away from difficult plans or decisions and work to bring others together toward a common purpose.
Best careers for ESTJ personalities:
ESFJ: Extraverted, Sensing, Feeling, Judging
ESFJs are serious and practical, committed to their responsibilities, and sensitive to the needs of others. They strive for harmony, are generous with their time, efforts, and emotions, and are eager to please at work and home. ESFJs value loyalty and tradition and hold to a strict moral code. They typically enjoy their routines and maintain a regular schedule that allows them to stay organised and productive.