The ENTJ is one of the rarer personality types and one of the most misunderstood and vilified. People of this personality type are often thought of as soulless corporate types, people who have calculators where their hearts should be. But anyone who has been friends with an ENTJ will tell you that just isn’t true. ENTJs are as complex and as varied as any other type, and as friends they can be just as loyal and giving as anyone else.
ENTJs are blunt, assertive thinkers who like to get things done in the external world and don’t always consider other people’s emotions. In fact, ENTJs often aren’t aware of emotional needs at all and that applies to their own emotions as well as to the emotions of others. ENTJs have the introverted feeling as their inferior function. This usually means that they have very few skills in the emotional sector, aren’t really interested in it, and don’t pay attention to emotional cues. Some ENTJs may even be scared of the emotional realm, or find it uncomfortable enough that they generally avoid trying to understand that component. And the combination of those factors can make ENTJs seem lacking in empathy, too blunt, and even insensitive.
ENTJs usually have a plan for every part of their life, and that applies to their friendships as well. They’re much more likely to pursue the people they want to be friends with than let the friendships occur because of proximity. Instead, they choose people based on their ability to have the deep, abstract conversations that ENTJs love as well as a shared drive to learn and grow. When you first meet an ENTJ who wants to be friends with you, this focused attention can feel a little intimidating. But what it means is the ENTJ sees your strengths and has chosen you to enhance and challenge their life and thinking. And this is a great compliment to your own skills and drive.
Friendships with NTs
ENTJs match well with NT types. They both use an intuitive function, which means they can indulge in the long, abstract conversations they both love, and this will naturally draw them together. The shared thinking function is also important. 1 ENTJs can be blunt and too goal orientated, going after what they want without always realizing or understanding how their behavior and actions can affect others. NTs, with their reliance on rational thought rather than emotions, are one of the few personality types who can understand this way of seeing the world. And their natural bluntness means they can always confront the ENTJ when this behavior goes too far.
Friendships with NFs
ENTJs are blunt. Very blunt. They’re often too blunt and emotionally insensitive to have close friendships with sensitive NFs. Although they both use an intuitive function, which can make conversations between these types deep and satisfying, the emotional divide is often too great with these types. NFs use a feeling function as their strength, which makes them very aware of emotional currents and content. It also makes them naturally sensitive to emotions and easily hurt. ENTJs, with their almost complete blindness to the emotional implications of their actions, and the result afterwards, can be a risky friendship choice for NFs. On their part, ENTJs often find the NF focus on emotion confusing and impractical and may become impatient with the slower, more contemplative way of life that this type of intelligence encourages.
Another barrier to a friendship between an NF and an ENTJ comes from this emotional blindness. ENTJs usually don’t need emotional support from others, in fact they don’t really understand why others do need it. This is why the NF focus on supplying and getting emotional support through their relationships can seem completely incomprehensible to ENTJs. However, if the ENTJ and the NF can overcome these issues then a relationship between these types can be an incredible source of growth as well as deeply satisfying and challenging for both parties.
Friendships with SPs
A relationship between an ENTJ and a SP will be difficult. ENTJs love deep, abstract conversation above everything else, and SPs have little patience for them. This can create a divide that makes the friendship impossible. But there is a similarity between some SPs and ENTJs that can bridge this divide. SPs use extraverted sensing as their dominant or auxiliary function. This often makes them extremely busy people, with lots of projects going at the same time. It drives them to explore, to get out and do, and ENTJs greatly respect this focus and often share it. ENTJs sometimes seek out SPs for this adventurous, active lifestyle, using it to inspire and boost their own. And they can create a solid friendship on that basis, and get their need for intuitive conversations somewhere else.
Friendships with SJs
ENTJs don’t often seek out SJs as friends. SJs lack an intuitive function, which means they usually don’t enjoy the ENTJs conversational interests or style and can’t bond with them on this level. But perhaps more importantly, SJs have a deep respect for the past and for traditional authorities. This can result in them doing things just because they’ve always been done that way, or being reluctant to move out of already established routines. And that applies even if those routines and procedures don’t really work. To an ENTJ, with their natural disregard for authority and the rules of others, this kind of behavior can be absolutely infuriating. In fact, ENTJs and SJs are probably more likely to butt head than to become close friends.
ENTJs can be difficult to get close to. Their focus on completing tasks in the most efficient way possible often comes first, and it means they sometimes run over the top of people in their desire to get things done. But if they’ve chosen the right people as friends, those friends will remind them to slow down, to think about others, and forgive them any slip ups. And the ENTJ will reward them with loyalty and always push them to do better, and be better. And that’s one of the best ways to grow.
- Dr. Drenth A. J. “Introverted Feeling (Fi) vs. Ti, Ni & Fe“. (Retrieved on Jan 2018).
- Whincop Luke. “Manifestations of the Inferior Function, Part 1: Thinking and Feeling“. Aug 25, 2015. (Retrieved on Jan 2018).
- Moore Julie. “Introverted Thinking vs Extroverted Thinking“. Mar 4, 2015. (Retrieved on Jan 2018).
- “ENTJ – The CEO“.