Does Your Personality Type Predict Your Career Destiny?

Could your personality type affect how much money you'll earn, whether you're likely to become a leader, or even how much you like your job? Is it possible that your natural traits and tendencies are shaping your career path in ways you don't even realize?

If you've read a profile of your personality type, you've probably noticed that certain suggestions are made about your career path based on your type. ENTJs and ESTJs are usually described as ambitious natural leaders. ENTPs are invariably described as entrepreneurial. And other types, like ISFJs and ESFPs, are painted as devoted family members, not corporate killers.

But do these type stereotypes hold up to actual scientific study? Are ENTJs really more likely to be CEOs, while ISFJs keep the home fires burning? With the help of 25,759 volunteers, we decided to find out.

The infographic below summarizes our most interesting findings, but for all the nitty-gritty details, read the full report.


Michelle Fenske (not verified) says...

I would be interested to see the gender breakdown on this, given the low proportion of female INTJs (4 out of every 500 females) and the high proportion of stay at home parents that are female (98%). Could you please tell us for the female survey respondents, where does INTJ rank in likelihood of being a stay at home parent?

Guest (not verified) says...

I would like to know this too.

As a stay at home mum who is INTP I have made the decision to have children so while I am able to, financially, I will stay at home.  I am really struggling with wanting to rejoin the work force so will look at being self employed in the future (in what, I have no idea yet).

KM (not verified) says...

The answer to your actual question is unlikely available, given that basically all stay at home parents are female, and all INTJ Females are female, and no one knows how many INTJs are really out there. Let's face it, the only people taking these tests are of a certain type, and likely more driven, due to the nature of this particular test (ie, LOTS of questions, vs any number of lesser tests).

Even suggesting one can extrapolate proportions of general populations from such testing is unlikely, given that: 

* Respondents must know about personality testing at all.

* Respondents must have enough curiosity to take the test.

* Respondents must have access to the various tests, and then choose this one.

* Respondents must share their results, with someone able to extrapolate the correlations between females, and Stay at home Moms.

Absent a wide and varied test population, with many additional questions to see who is, or has been a stay at home Mom, it seems highly unlikely that anyone can provide that answer. Especially when financial concerns may have overridden people's desire to stay at home, so just knowing if they did or didn't, is not the full story. 


That said, as an INTJ female, and a Stay at Home Mom for many years, I don't see it as unusual, or even unlikely. 

As an INTJ, I do not like working around others, so staying at home was an ideal situation for me. I have little confidence in others to do any job as well as I would, so keeping and raising my own children seems like a natural for any INTJ, as well. 

Teaching my children to value logic, reasoning, and a variety of skills was a worthwhile endeavor for me, and I raised 2 highly intelligent, and successful male chidlren, who are happy and healthy, contributing members to society. Again, a worthwhile goal for any INTJ.

INTJs only "Seem" cold to others, because we are shy, and introverted. Not because we don't feel. We feel strongly - especially towards those we love. The love I felt for my children was overwhelming, and I never would have willingly trusted others to care for them, as long as it was in my power to raise them myself. 

I still love my adult children dearly, and my grandchildren every bit as much. Never feel like you are an oddball if you choose to raise your own children. You should raise them, if at all possible. I forfeited money I could have earned, had I worked, but I was more than willing to lose that money, to raise my own children. You won't regret it, if you can do so safely. (Ie, living in abject poverty to stay with the children may subject them to crime and diseases that money would raise them out of, so it is a tradeoff if you're at that edge financially, and only you can decide which is the better option for them, and you.)

I wish you well in childrearing, if that is your goal. I do think a more interesting question would be how many Home-schooled children are the offspring of INTJ Females. I did it for only one year, because I believe socialization matters, too, but I could see that being a thing, with INTJs and their children. (My 1-year adventure was forced, due to the inadequate management of the middle school, and I was not willing to continue sending them there, so we stayed home for a bit over a year, until it was time for High school, & then they went back to public school.)

SW (not verified) says...

My (INTP) hubby and I could afford me staying home with our 4 kids and now and again home schooling them. I earned a teaching degree and was self employed selling cosmetics, crystal, home decor, anything and everything. I couldn't settle on any one thing. Teaching was a so-so career for me. But, my time with my kids was wonderful. The education, "careers", and kids kept my creative, analytical mind busy. It forced me to be a little more sociable, too.

Jadedmermaid says...

I'm really scratching my head at this. The huge descriptive paragraphs scream INTJ but nothing else here does. I can't think of anything I would rather do LESS than be home with my kids day in and day out, providing their education, food, love, listening to non-stop thoughts of theirs, making it so I can't even think my own. No judgment, but it would appear that your entire identity is wrapped up in your kids and that's sad. Wishing someone well in childrearing has got to be the most bizarre thing I've seen in an MBTI discussion ever.  (there's a cool bar graph on this one)

The initial thing that caused me to open up another tab on my browser and do some research was your factless and old school opinion that " given that basically all stay at home parents are female", because that is absolutely not the case. (Again--INTJ would have fact checked first). According to every stastistic I looked at, women are now 4-to-1 to men in terms of being the primary caregiver. So, if I am at a store and I am charged $1 for something but only have $0.75, is the store supposed to then give me my items because I have "basically all" the money? Yeah, I doubt that also. However, yesterday I sent my daughter into the store with exact change including sales tax. When she came out I asked if she had enough money (she got a coke unbeknownst to me and that had a redemption value) and she said she was 3 cents short but the cashier said it was okay. I'm going to place my bets on 97% of something versus 75% as being "almost all". 

What does this even mean?? " I did it for only one year, because I believe socialization matters, too, but I could see that being a thing, with INTJs and their children." Have you done any research???? An INTJ would have. Seems like INTJ Is alluring for you and you are trying to fit a square peg into a very meticulously laser etched heptogram-shaped hole.. Moving on....What is this - " due to the inadequate management of the middle school". The management isn't educating my kids--the teachers are. Sounds me by the words and the tone like there was a personality clash and someone made a decision based in emotion and tried to pass it off as logic. That doesn't work when you're talking to a room full of logical people...

It seems to me based on a lot of your examples that you are more likely a control freak than an INTJ. INTJs love facts and research. We love the objective. The subjective is too unreliable and is driven by mood, feeling and whim. We don't work like that. We are also the second LEAST likely out of all 16 MBTI types to stay home and raise kids.

Idk...there's a lot I want to say but I think it will fall on deaf ears because it will be interpreted emotionally and seen as an attack. This is not an attack. I do, however, think that it might be a good idea to take the ego out ot it, be honest, take the test and see what your MBTI really is. If I can think of one overly annoying INTJ trait that I happen to love, it's that we research the things we are passionate about to death and we remain objective, presenting only fatcs, usually bookended with the opposing viewpoints (or pros/cons) to go with them.. I don't see any of that in your comment.


Please forgive any typos..

skills (not verified) says...

This sounds more like gatekeeping than a rational analysis.


It's more like you are focused more on the assigned, static tenets of the INTJ and the manner in which everyone must fit into it, or show themselves the door if they don't do so. People are not stereotypes though, and the form they take do not necessarily look the same.


I know ISFJs who could never be in healthcare, despite their natural inclination to care for others. They can't stand romance, despite being 'romantic' types. That doesn't make them mistyped, it just means people vary from the requirements for a personality test, even the 'absolutely essential' ones.


Not everyone expresses themselves in such a way that someone else can instantly recognize as an MBTI type. Look at INTJs: some love the dangerous, brilliant evil genius stereotype and write like bored supervillains on forums, lamenting all they have to put up with. Others cringe and say 'I'd like to be excluded from this logical villain narrative'. But they're still both INTJs. The traits are educated guesses about each type, not end all, be all requirements.

Heck, I HATE math and I like kids better than most people I've met, but I've still tested as an INTJ every time I've taken the test for 10+ years. Perhaps I'm just terribly, repeatedly mistaken.

Verabsmith (not verified) says...

I took this test so long ago, it was in the original book format. It was an exhaustive questionnaire- no stone left unturned.  If you're going to take this test, take the real one.  It might wear you out, but you'll know who you are by the end of it! BTW, the results are so exact that it matched the job I was currently in (legal secretary) .  I later went on to apply for and get accepted into law school.   However, plot twist, I made the decision to further my career as a paralegal rather than a lawyer.  In true INTJ fashion, it was a well thought out, objective long term plan as I had also just gotten married and knew that I would one day stay at home with children. My paralegal salary wouldn't cover daycare at all and a law career rarely gives enough time to new mothers.  The debt of law school would only burden the family more. So, in conclusion an INTJ female CAN  be consistent in her INTJness by staying in the "correct" career then calculating for the time she will need to be a stay at home mom.  INTJ isn't all WHAT you are but HOW you go about it;)

Take heart INTJ SAHMs . . If it was the most rational choice, that's what it's all about! 

bil (not verified) says...

wow this can really make certain types feel like useless garbage huh 

Wither (not verified) says...

Nobody's destined to be what the types say they should be. It's just something some people take to help themselves get on the right career path or figure themselves out. In the end it all depends on yourself.

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