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The ESTJ at Work

At work, the ESTJ excels at organizing—people, projects, and operations. ESTJs like to be in control and often seek out management positions, preferring to be in a role where they can make decisions and enforce policies and procedures.

ESTJs quickly develop a reputation in the workplace as people who can be trusted to deliver, on time and as requested. They are unfailingly reliable and gain satisfaction from bringing a project to completion. Because of their eagerness to take on responsibility, they sometimes become overworked.

The ideal work environment for an ESTJ is highly structured, with a clear set of expectations and an organized authority structure. The ideal job for an ESTJ allows them to use their organizational skills within a set of standardized procedures to efficiently produce a tangible product.

The ESTJ on a Team

ESTJs are take-charge types who bring order and industrious energy to a team, focusing on opportunities to implement structure and take decisive action. ESTJs don’t mince words, sharing their objective evaluation of the situation directly and honestly. They are hard workers, productive and oriented to results, and expect others to fall in step with their methodic determination.

ESTJs are very task focused and may become impatient with colleagues who want to discuss things for too long before deciding on action steps, especially if the discussion is overly abstract or theoretical. They will tend to try to take the lead in making a decision and moving on with a concrete plan of action. ESTJs are consummate planners with respect for schedules and deadlines, and are reluctant to stray from the plan. They want to know the established procedure, and may be annoyed by team members who don’t follow the rules.

The ESTJ as a Leader

In leadership positions, ESTJs make sure that things are done correctly, results are reliably produced, and standards are met. They make expectations clear to their teams, not only what needs to be done but how and when to do it. When managing a project, they are typically methodical and detailed in their plans, and make sure that the end product is delivered exactly as expected.

ESTJs tend to uphold the traditional way of doing things and may not recognize the need for innovation. They tend to trust their past experience, and may not be comfortable leading into an uncertain future. Vision can be a challenge for ESTJ leaders, who are often better at implementing changes than conceiving of them.

ESTJs trust the structures of authority, and typically seek to establish a clear hierarchy. They are comfortable with taking orders from superiors and expect their reports to respect their authority in turn. They are typically decisive and may show little flexibility after they have arrived at a conclusion.

ESTJ Careers to Avoid

It is important to note that any personality type can be successful in any occupation. However, some occupations are well suited to the natural talents and preferred work style of the ESTJ, while other occupations demand modes of thinking and behavior that do not come as naturally to the ESTJ. Occupations that require the ESTJ to operate outside their natural preferences may prove stressful or draining, and often sound unappealing to ESTJs who are choosing a career.

The following occupations have been found to be unpopular among ESTJs, based on data gathered from surveys of the general population.

About the Author

Molly Owens is the CEO of Truity and holds a master's degree in counseling psychology. She founded Truity in 2012, with the goal of making quality personality tests more affordable and accessible. She has led the development of assessments based on Myers and Briggs' personality types, Holland Codes, the Big Five, DISC, and the Enneagram. She is an ENTP, a tireless brainstormer, and a wildly messy chef. Find Molly on Twitter at @mollmown.

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