The ESTJ Personality Type
ESTJs are hardworking traditionalists, eager to take charge in organizing projects and people. Orderly, rule-abiding, and conscientious, ESTJs like to get things done, and tend to go about projects in a systematic, methodical way.
ESTJs are the consummate organizers, and want to bring structure to their surroundings. They value predictability and prefer things to proceed in a logical order. When they see a lack of organization, the ESTJ often takes the initiative to establish processes and guidelines, so that everyone knows what's expected.
What does ESTJ stand for?
ESTJ is an acronym used to describe one of the sixteen personality types created by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Myers. It stands for Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Judging. ESTJ indicates a person who is energized by time spent with others (Extraverted), who focuses on facts and details rather than ideas and concepts (Sensing), who makes decisions based on logic and reason (Thinking) and who prefers to be planned and organized rather than spontaneous and flexible (Judging). ESTJs are sometimes referred to as Supervisor personalities because they tend to take charge and make sure things are done correctly.
ESTJ Values and Motivations
ESTJs are conventional, factual, and grounded in reality. For the ESTJ, the proof is in the past: what has worked and what has been done before. They value evidence over conjecture, and trust their personal experience. ESTJs look for rules to follow and standards to meet, and often take a leadership role in helping other people meet expectations as well. They concern themselves with maintaining the social order and keeping others in line.
ESTJs often take on a project manager role at home as well as at work, and excel at setting goals, making decisions, and organizing resources to accomplish a task. The ESTJ wants to achieve efficient productivity and typically believes this is best accomplished when people and systems are well organized.
How Others See the ESTJ
ESTJs command a situation, with the sense that they know how things should go and are ready to take charge to make sure that it happens. They are task-oriented and put work before play. Confident and tough-minded, the ESTJ appears almost always to be in control. ESTJs appreciate structure and often begin to organize as soon as they enter a room. They want to establish the ground rules and make sure everyone does what they’re supposed to.
ESTJs are often involved in institutions: clubs, associations, societies, and churches, where they usually take a leadership role. They typically connect with others through sharing ritual and routine. Social interaction for ESTJs often means following an established tradition to engage with others in a structured way. ESTJs tend to respect and seek out hierarchy. They want to know who’s in charge, and will assign levels of responsibility if none exist. Once a structure is in place, ESTJs typically trust authority figures and expect obedience from people of lower rank.
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How rare is the ESTJ personality type?
ESTJ is the fifth most common type in the population, and the second most common among men. ESTJs make up:
- 9% of the general population
- 11% of men
- 6% of women
Famous ESTJs include Colin Powell, Judge Judy Sheindlin, Dr. Laura Schlessinger, George Washington, Sandra Day O’Connor, Mike Wallace, and Vince Lombardi.
"The ESTJs solve problems by expertly applying and adapting past experience. They like work where they can achieve immediate, visible, and tangible results."
- Isabel Briggs Myers, Gifts Differing
"These Supervisors are eager to enforce the rules and procedures, and they can be serious about seeing to it that others toe the mark—or else face the consequences."
- David Keirsey, Please Understand Me II
"As a general rule ESTJs will rise to the top of almost any organization."
- Otto Kroeger, Type Talk at Work
Facts about ESTJs
Interesting facts about the ESTJ:
- On personality trait measures, likely to score as Contented, Energetic, Prejudiced, Self-Satisfied, and Practical
- More likely than other types to exhibit Type A behavior
- Of all types, scored highest in coping resources (with ENFP)
- Ranked 3rd highest in marital satisfaction among all types
- Among top four types in college GPA
- Least likely of all types to think about suicide in college
- Among most likely to stay in college
- Among types most satisfied with their work
- High-ranking personal values include Health, Financial Security, Achievement, and Prestige
- Overrepresented among bank officers, financial managers, and business owners
Source: MBTI Manual
ESTJ Hobbies and Interests
Popular hobbies for the ESTJ include building and repairing things around the home, gardening, volunteering, community service, and playing and watching sports.