The Sixteen Types…(of personality traits)

…from “Please Understand Me” by Keirsey & Bates

  1.  “Extroverted INtuitive Feeling Judging, known as “ENFJs,” are outstanding leaders of groups and growth groups.  They have the charming characteristic of seeming to take for granted that they will be followed, never doubting that people will want to do what they suggest.  And, more often than not, people do, because this type has unusual charisma.  ENFJs place a high value on cooperation from others and are most willing to cooperate themselves.”
  2. INFJs focus on possibilities, think in terms of values and come easily to decisions.  The small number of this type (1%) is regrettable, since INFJs have an unusually strong drive to contribute to the welfare of others and genuinely enjoy helping their fellow men [or women].  This type has great depth of personality; they are themselves complicated, and can understand and deal with complex issues and people.”
  3. “For ENFPs (, nothing occurs which does not have some significance, and they have an uncanny sense of the motivations of others.  This gives them a talent for seeing life as an exciting drama, pregnant with possibilities for both good and evil.  This [personality] type is found in only about 5% of the general population, but they have great influence because of their extraordinary impact on others.”
  4. “INFPs ( represent a calm, pleasant face to the world and are seen as reticent and even shy.  Although they demonstrate a cool reserve toward others, inside they are anything but distant.  They have a capacity for caring which is not always found in other types.  They care deeply–indeed, passionately– about a few special persons or a cause. One word that captures this type in idealistic.  At times, this characteristic leaves them feeling isolated, especially sin INFPs are found in only 1% of the general population.”
  5. “If one word were used to capture ENTJs style, it would be commandant (  The basic driving force and need of ENTJs is to lead, and from an early age they can be observed taking over groups.  This type is found in approximately 5% of the total population.  They have a strong urge to give structure wherever they hare–to harness people to distant goals.”
  6. “INTJs are the most self-confident of all they types, having “self-power” awareness.  Found in about 1% of the general population, the INTJs live in an introspective reality, focusing on possibilities, using thinking in the form of empirical logic, and preferring that events and people serve some positive use.”  (
  7. ENTPs wish to exercise their ingenuity in the world of people and things.  Found in about five out of every hundred people, ENTPs extravert intuition; thus they deal imaginatively with social relationships as well as physical and mechanical relations.  They are very alert to what is apt to occur next, and always sensitive to possibilities.”  (
  8. INTPs exhibit the greatest precision in thought and language of all the types; they tend to see distinctions and inconsistencies in thought and language instantaneously.  The one work which captures the unique style of INTPs is architect–the architect of ideas and systems as well as the architect of edifices.  This type is found in only 1% of the population and therefore is not encountered as frequently as some of the other types.”  (
  9. ESTJs are very much in touch with the external environment.  They know their community and usually are pillars of strength.  The best adjective to describe ESTJs would be responsible.  The represent about 13% of the general population.”  (
  10. ISTJs are characterized by decisiveness in practical affairs, are the guardians of time-honored institutions, and, if only one adjective could be selected, dependable would best describe this type which represents about 6percen of the general population.”  (
  11. ESFJs, the most sociable of all types, are energized by interactions with people, tending to idealize whatever of whoever they admire.  Harmony is a key to this type, which is represented in about 13 percent of the general population.”  (
  12. “Six out of every one hundred people are ISFJs.  Here the primary desire is to be of service and to minister to individual needs.  ISFJs carry a sense of history, a sense of continuity with past events and relationships.  Traditions and the conservation of resources are valued highly.  …ISFJs believe work is good, play must be earned.”  (
  13. ESTPs are men and women of action.  When someone of this personality is present, things begin to happen.  The lights come on, the music plays, the game begins.  And a game it is for the ESTP, the outstanding entrepreneur, the international diplomat, the conciliator, and the negotiator par excellence.  Approximately 13% of the general population are of this extraverted, sensing, thinking, perceiving type, and if only one adjective could be used to describe ESTPs resourceful would be an apt choice.”  (
  14. ESFPs radiate attractive warmth and optimism.  Smooth, witty, charming, clever, voluble, and open to the environment–this describes ESFPs who, like ESTPs, represent about 13% of the general population.  They are great fun to be with and are the most generous of all the types.  Performer would be the word which best describes an ESFP.”  (
  15. “Just as impulsive as other SPs, the ISTP’s life is artful action–and action is end in itself.  Action for the ISTP is more gratifying if it is born of impulse rather than of purpose.  If the action is in the service of an end or aim, let the aim look out for itself; it cannot be allowed to influence execution.  The act is self-directed, self-leading, containing its own imperatives which are egalitarian an can be fiercely loyal to “brothers,” but they can also be fiercely insubordinate, seeing hierarchy and authority as unnecessary and even superfluous.’  (
  16. Although all SPs (Sensuous Performers) are artisans in their nature, they usually do not pursue their artistry with the same devotion to grace and adornment as the ISFP.  For whatever reason, the ISFP seems more inclined to the “fine arts” than the other SPs; so when an especially gifted composer, painter, or dance shows up, he or she, more frequently than not, possesses the character of the ISFP.  Beethoven, Toscanini, Rembrandt, and Nijinski, as shown by typohistorical research, were clear-cut ISFPs.  But the ISFP temperament is very difficult to observe, even in the great artists, and so ISFP is probably the most misunderstood of all the types.”  (

From A. K. Buckroth, it’s fun to know, it’s fun to learn!  I hope you enjoyed reading this book excerpt.  I enjoyed sharing it with my readers.  Just sayin’….  #buckroth


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