What is an ISTJ?
ISTJ is an acronym used to describe one of the sixteen personality types created by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Myers. It stands for Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, Judging. ISTJ indicates a person who is energized by time spent alone (Introverted), 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). ISTJs are sometimes referred to as Inspector personalities because of their focus on details and interest in doing things correctly.
How common is the ISTJ personality type?
ISTJ is the third most common type in the population and the most common type among men. ISTJs make up:
- 12% of the general population
- 16% of men
- 7% of women
The ISTJ Personality Type
ISTJs are responsible organizers, driven to create and enforce order within systems and institutions. They are neat and orderly, inside and out, and tend to have a procedure for everything they do. Reliable and dutiful, ISTJs want to uphold tradition and follow regulations.
ISTJs are steady, productive contributors. Although they are Introverted, ISTJs are rarely isolated; typical ISTJs know just where they belong in life, and want to understand how they can participate in established organizations and systems. They concern themselves with maintaining the social order and making sure that standards are met.
ISTJ Values and Motivations
ISTJs like to know what the rules of the game are, valuing predictability more than imagination. They rely on their past experience to guide them, and are most comfortable in familiar surroundings. ISTJs trust the proven method, and appreciate the value of dedicated practice to build confidence in their skills.
ISTJs are hardworking and will persist until a task is done. They are logical and methodical, and often enjoy tasks that require them to use step-by-step reasoning to solve a problem. They are meticulous in their attention to details, and examine things closely to be sure they are correct. With their straightforward logic and orientation to detail, ISTJs work systematically to bring order to their own small parts of the world.
How Others See the ISTJ
ISTJs have a serious, conservative air about them. They want to know and follow the rules of the game, and typically seek out predictable surroundings where they understand their role. You may find the ISTJ doing something useful even in social situations (for instance, organizing coats and hats at a party) as they’re often more comfortable taking charge of a task than they are chatting up strangers. When given something to do, they are highly dependable, and follow it through to the end.
ISTJs are practical and no-nonsense, and rarely call attention to themselves. Their clothes and possessions tend to be chosen based on utility rather than fashion, and they have an affection for the classics. ISTJs typically speak in a straightforward manner and have a good head for details. They are usually more enthusiastic about sharing factual information than exploring abstract concepts or unproven ideas.
Famous ISTJs include Queen Elizabeth II, Harry Truman, Warren Buffett, Queen Victoria, George H.W. Bush, and J.D. Rockefeller.
ISTJ Hobbies and Interests
Popular hobbies for the ISTJ include concentration games like chess and Trivial Pursuit, playing computer games, watching sporting events, pursuing physical fitness, and playing solitary sports such as golf.
Quotes About ISTJs
"All contracts should be cleared by ISTJs; they will overlook nothing that is in it and assume nothing that is not."
- Isabel Briggs Myers, Gifts Differing
"Whether at home or at work, ISTJs are nothing if not reliable, particularly when it comes to inspecting the people and things in their jurisdiction—quietly seeing to it that uniform quality of product is maintained, and that those around them uphold certain standards of attitude and conduct."
- David Keirsey, Please Understand Me II
"ISTJ is a no-frills, work-hard, play-hard type. They are seen as compulsive, hard-charging, capable, and true to their word."
- Otto Kroeger, Type Talk at Work
Facts about ISTJs
Interesting facts about the ISTJ:
- On personality trait measures, score as Calm, Stable, Steady, Cautious, and Conventional
- More likely than other types to experience cardiac problems and hypertension
- More likely than other types to experience chronic pain
- Among four highest types in college GPA
- More frequent among African Americans
- Personal values include Financial Security
- Most likely of all types to enjoy a work environment where “everything is done by the book”
- Overrepresented among bank officers, financial managers, MBA students, and small business owners
- Often found in careers in management, administration, law enforcement, and accounting
Source: MBTI Manual