ESTJs are strong, driven types who like to know where they’re going and why. Because of this, they often have little patience for typing mistakes and would prefer to know exactly where they fit. The best way to ensure this is to type based on how they use their cognitive functions rather than some of the other methods commonly and erroneously used with the MBTI system.
ESTJ General Strengths and Weaknesses
ESTJs are loyal and dependable people who can always be counted on to do things correctly and to the best of their ability. This makes them uniquely suited for the business world or any other field where they can use their logical, organized minds to bring order to chaos and focus on accomplishment. This type uses extraverted thinking as their dominant function, which gives them the ability to understand and design massive systems that make everything run smoothly and efficiently. These kinds of tasks are what this type excels at and what they enjoy to do, and this preference often makes them the backbone of any field in which they find themselves.
There are a number of weaknesses associated with this type too, most of them caused by their lack of emotional intelligence. ESTJs have introverted feeling as their inferior function. This means that their emotions are often unconscious, buried and a little uncomfortable for ESTJs to think about let alone experience. Because of this lack of understanding, they often don’t have more than a basic understanding of their own emotional life and have little interest in learning more. This weakness translates to other people as well. Most ESTJs have little idea of what others are feeling at any moment, and this can create a barrier to their business success and their personal life. It can also make them seem insensitive, blunt and even rude to the people around them when the ESTJ is just trying to get things done in the quickest and most logical ways.
Common Type Confusions
The most common type confusion that occurs for ESTJs is when they’re mistake for ENTJs. These two types can look very similar from the outside. They both lead with extraverted thinking, which is an extremely dynamic and practical function that drives them to get everything done in the most efficient way possible. Because of this function, both ESTJs and ENTJs are usually powerhouses when it comes to work and task accomplishment. These two types also have the same function as their inferior, introverted feeling. This means that these two types are very similar in their lack of understanding about their own emotion and the emotions of others. The mistyping usually occurs when people try to type themselves or others based on their behavior. Because they’re so similar in terms of how they make decisions and their lack of emotional intelligence, it often results in this error.
Common Confusions Comparisons
Distinguishing between an ESTJ and an ENTJ is a matter of looking at the functions. ESTJs use introverted sensing as their auxiliary function. This is how they learn and it determines what they value and how they structure their lives. This function gives ESTJs a strong attachment to the past. They make most of their decision and structure their lives according to what worked previously. It also gives them a strong attachment to institutions and symbols of authority from the past. Because of this function, ESTJs are usually perfectly willing to obey authority figures or to work for well-established companies in a way that matches with how things were done in past generations.
In contrast, ENTJs use introverted intuition as their auxiliary function. This function is future focused and has no interest in how things were done in the past. In fact, introverted intuition is more likely to study the patterns of the present and use them to design new and innovative ways of doing things. Evaluating these two types according to this auxiliary function shows how really different they are and illustrates the impossibility of typing someone properly based purely on behavior.
Unusual Type Confusions
Less commonly, ESTJs can mistype as ISTJs. This may seem fairly strange, because ESTJs are focused on the external world rather than the internal world. It’s the stereotypes that surround introverts and extroverts that often causes this mistyping. ESTJs enjoy other people’s company at times, but they’re far more focused on getting things done. They often don’t enjoy socializing for its own sake and would rather have a set agenda for the encounter. Because their extraversion is focused on task accomplishment rather than people, they often prefer to work alone so that they can be sure that everything gets done properly. This tendency for solitary work often results in this mistyping.
Unusual Confusions Comparisons
It’s easy to tell an ISTJ from an ESTJ as long as you’re typing based on function rather than behavior. They’re both analytical types but ESTJs have a strong tendency towards action that ISTJs lack. They may prefer to work alone, but at the same time they will be busily imposing order on the external world. ISTJs usually prefer to work alone too, but they have less interest in the external world. What ISTJs prefer to do when they work alone is to go inward and organize data and information. They do this using their introverted sensing function, which compares and rates new information based on the past. This usually makes them very thoughtful and insightful types who don’t have the same drive towards action and accomplishment that characterizes the ESTJ type.
ESTJs are some of the most dynamic people you’ll ever meet. They’re rational and driven and have little patience for systems that don’t work properly. Because of this they may quit using the MBTI system if they’re typed incorrectly, believing that it’s inefficient. However, if they can see past the typing mistakes they will find a lot of information on how to grow using this system, as well as how to structure their lives to best fit their own unique preferences and tendencies.
- Storm, Susan. “How You Use Extraverted Thinking – Based On Its Location in Your Function Stack“. Jan 20, 2017. (Retrieved Apr 2019).
- Dr. Drenth A. J. “The Inferior Function: An Overlooked (But Potent) Personality Factor“. (Retrieved Apr 2019).
- “Podcast – Episode 0030 – Introverted Intuition vs Extraverted Intuition“. Sep 8, 2014. (Retrieved Apr 2019).
- ESTJ – The Supervisor.
- ISTJ – The Inspector.
- ENTJ – The CEO.