Introverted (I), Intuitive (N), Thinking (T) and Judging (J)
The INTJ personality type is nicknamed the "Strategist" and belongs to the NT Intellectual temperament. INTJs are private, independent and self-confident. They strive for perfection and achievement. They are gifted strategists with analytical, conceptual and objective minds. They are flexible and like to formulate contingency plans. Strategists are able to see the reasons behind things.
INTJs direct their energy inward. They are energized by spending time alone. They typically have fewer friends and prefer small groups. They are private, quiet and deliberate. Strategists are Intuitive people that are always thinking and analyzing. Strategists are very deep and abstract. They are complex on the inside and see endless possibilities. Strategists are Thinkers that make decisions with their head. They are objective and logical. They are critical, impersonal and thick-skinned. INTJs are structured and scheduled. They are controlled and responsible. They seek closure and enjoy completing tasks.
Social interaction is often the Strategist's greatest challenge since it requires setting aside their strategic thinking. They are not affectionate unless they feel very safe. They do not always know how they affect others and can appear insensitive. Since Strategists enjoy deep conversations, more shallow forms of social interaction are often seen as a waste of time. They want their relationships to serve a good purpose. Strategists honor commitments.
"I cannot live without books." — Thomas Jefferson
INTJs love to learn. They often excel in school and achieve all their goals. They are driven and self-disciplined. They thrive with the most theoretical and complex subjects. INTJs are in a constant quest for self-improvement, growth and self-competency. They are usually voracious readers.
Describing an INTJ
INTJs can often be described with these words. They commonly posess the following strengths and weaknesses.
Characteristic of an INTJ
- Good at listening
- Highly intelligent
- Takes criticism well
- Honors commitments
- Dislikes communicating feelings
- Can come across as arrogant
- Unwilling to take blame
- INTJs make up 1.5% of all 16 personality types. INTJs are the second most rare personality type. Of the NT types, INTJs are the least common.
- 1 in every 40 males is an INTJ (2.5% of all males). 1 in every 200 females is an INTJ (0.5% of all females). Female INTJs are the least common type-gender combination (along with male INFJs).
- There are significantly more male INTJs than there are female INTJs, with males outnumbering females nearly 5 to 1. One reason there are more male INTJs is that males tend to be Thinkers (T) while females are more often Feelers (F).
Introversion is characterized by a preference to focus on the inside world. As introverts, INTJs are energized by spending time alone or with a small, familiar group. They find large group gatherings draining because they seek depth instead of breadth of relationships. Like other introverts, INTJs process information internally. They are often great listeners.
Thinking prioritizes objectivity. As Thinkers, INTJs make decisions based on facts. They are ruled by their head instead of their heart (but are not without emotion). INTJs judge situations and others based on logic. They value truth over tact and can easily identify flaws. They are critical thinkers and oriented toward problem solving.
People with Intuition live in the future. They are immersed in the world of possibilities. They process information through patterns and impressions. As Intuitives, INTJs value inspiration and imagination. They gather knowledge by reading between the lines. Their abstract nature attracts them toward deep ideas, concepts and metaphors. They can see the "big picture".
As Judging people, INTJs think sequentially. They value order and organization. Their lives are scheduled and structured. INTJs seek closure and enjoy completing tasks. They take deadlines seriously. They work then they play. The Judging preference does not mean judgmental. Judging refers to how a person deals with day-to-day activities.
INTJ Cognitive Functions
Every person engages the world through four Cognitive Functions. The INTJ's primary function is Introverted Intuition and secondary is Extraverted Thinking.
Introverted Intuition (Primary)
INTJs use this function most often. With Intuition (N), INTJs process data through impressions, possibilities and meanings. Introverted Intuition enables Strategists to have a sense about the future. It is the ability to grasp a pattern or plan. Information that is commonly hard to understand and dissect is more easily processed through Introverted Intuition.
Extraverted Thinking (Secondary)
INTJs use of this function is somewhat high. While Thinking (T), INTJs make decisions based on logic. The Extraverted Thinking function enables them to organize and categorize items such as thoughts and arguments. It is the ability to see the logical consequences of actions. It follows sequence and organization.
Introverted Feeling (Tertiary)
INTJs use this function but to a lesser degree. When Feeling (F), Strategists make decisions based on feelings, so the Introverted Feeling function allows them to know what they value. It is the ability to see through others and know what they are really like as if the INTJ had internal radar. When they identify a person with similar values, there is a desire to connect.
Extraverted Sensing (Least)
INTJs use this function least of the four. Through Sensing (S), INTJs process data with their five senses. The Extraverted Sensing function allows them to process life through their experiences. It is being aware of what is seen, smelled, touched, heard and tasted. It is being energized by experience and living "in the moment."
INTJs and Work
INTJs analyze and strategize before they act. In their work they are organized and structured. They can be counted upon. They set high standards for themselves and believe they can achieve them. Coworkers find them private and hard to get to know. Others may perceive INTJs as aloof or annoyed when in reality they are serious and intense.
INTJ Career Matches
People with the INTJ personality type may find satisfaction with the following careers which tend to match well with their Strategist personality.
- Systems Analyst
- Computer Programmer
- Computer Specialist
- Corporate Strategist
- Medical Doctor
- Business Administrator
- Military Officer
- Organization Founder
- Dwight D. EisenhowerAmerican President
- Thomas JeffersonAmerican President
- Augustus CaesarRoman Emperor
- Sir Isaac NewtonAstronomer
- Susan B. AnthonyCivil Rights Leader
- Jane AustenAuthor (Pride and Prejudice)
- Angela LansburyActress (Murder, She Wrote)
- Peter JenningsJournalist
- C. S. LewisApologist, Author
- Martina NavratilovaTennis Champion
- Rudy GiulianiNew York City Mayor
- General Colin PowellU.S. Secretary of State
- Lance ArmstrongCyclist
- Katie CouricTelevision Journalist
- Dan AkroydActor, Comedian, Musician
- Woodrow WilsonAmerican President
- William F. Buckley, Jr.Journalist
- Maria ShriverJournalist
- Josephine TeyEnglish Author
- Chester A. ArthurLawyer, American President
- Arnold SchwarzeneggerActor, California Governor
- Mr. DarcyPride and Prejudice
- GandalfLord of The Rings
- Mr. MiyagiThe Karate Kid
- Professor MoriartySherlock Holmes
- Ellen RipleyAlien
- ViciousCowboy Bebop
- Dr. Robert StonehillExtraordinary Measures
- Michael CorleoneThe Godfather
- Marsellus WallacePulp Fiction
- Mr. BurnsThe Simpsons
- Dr. Jonathan CraneBatman Begins
INTJs are gifted theorists. They thrive on understanding and formulating complex systems. Of all the personality types, Strategists are the most penetrating in thought and insight. Their greatest contribution is their desire to produce mastery and achievement that reflects their brilliance.