People who show the Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, Prospecting personality traits, or ESTPs, are often referred to as the Entrepreneur. They are outgoing, dramatic people who love to take action and just do things, rather than plan in detail. They excel at making friends and will usually have a large number of acquaintances and closer friends.
In addition to being gregarious, ESTPs are also very logical when assessing the world around them. From problems to decision making they take an objective view, and tend to pay little attention to personal feelings. They also prefer a less structured environment, preferring to improvise rather than be restricted by specific planning.
ESTPs in Teams
While ESTPs make friends easily, that does not necessarily translate into the team environment, and here the complete range of their emotional intelligence will have an impact, so what does it mean? In a team environment, ESTPs use their outgoing nature well, being seen as enthusiastic but logical, able to communicate specific facts with ease and provide realistic assessments of any given situation. They are likable and tend not to judge others, so make connections with ease, boosting team morale through spontaneous actions, injecting fun where appropriate and being flexible enough to fit within the group dynamic without causing friction.
They tend to enjoy casual environments that avoid traditional rules and hierarchies, and try to create that within the team, but this does not suit everyone. As such, ESTPs can be guilty of pushing some people further than they are comfortable with, while others can find the need for novelty and excitement disruptive rather than helpful. To combat these issues, ESTPs can work to enhance their emotional intelligence by working on communications in advance rather than simply ‘winging it’ and remembering the impact on others in the process.
In leadership roles, ESTPs adopt a collaborative approach, gathering opinions and facts, laying out the various alternatives and finding the right option for all. As outgoing and generally positive people, they are great motivators, and this can be especially useful as leaders during times of crisis or emergency, where their larger-than-life exuberance can help them take the lead during difficult times and keep the team positive, so that they will achieve the desired outcome.
But as leaders, ESTPs have some flaws too, and that reliance on excitement and motivation can lack substance, leading to a cycle of crises, with no tangible solutions ever completed. Their exuberance and sense of fun may elevate team morale, but for some it can seem like they don’t take the situation seriously, and that can have the opposite effect, harming morale within the group. The key here for ESTPs is to recognize the limitations of their approach and work on their emotional intelligence, finding a balance between creating a positive culture and being professional and realistic about the issues being faced.
When dealing with difficult situations, whether that is a challenge to overcome, conflict or other stressful situation, ESTPs look to be active participants in finding solutions. They use their ability to connect with others in a positive way, gathering opinions and ideas and then negotiating the best options to suit the team. They see the importance of compromise in these challenging situations, preferring to find a solution the majority can accept so that things are moving forward, rather than remaining stagnant while looking for the perfect option. This can be good, but also has the risk of being too focused on doing something, and ending up doing the wrong thing. Instead of finding the ideal answer, they can often take the easy route of doing something, but also often seem too indifferent to a successful outcome, preferring the flexibility of passing responsibility to others.
That desire for immediate action can also be problematic during change, where the desire to simply move forwards and rely on improvisation to deal with problems during the change process often delays change implementation instead. However, their logical side ensures that ESTPs are excellent in identifying and resolving difficulties with the change process, although again they often overlook the impact on other people, and as a result can find unforeseen problems as change progresses.
Practical, energetic, clever and realistic, ESTPs are a ball of positivity and an excellent addition to a team. They boost morale and naturally bring people together, but they can have problems with their need for instant action. Learning to stop, think and see what the implications will be for others is something that ESTPs need to work on, and with that can be extremely valuable members of any team.