Career Tips for ENFP Personality Types (Extroverted-Intuitive-Feeling-Perceiving).
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) can organize the career exploration process by assisting with answers to questions regarding goal setting, gathering information, networking, and decision making based on personality behavior. This assessment’s roots can be traced back to Carl Jung’s theory of psychological personality type. It classifies individuals into 16 different categories based on various aspects of personality. These categories include characteristics such as how extraverted or introverted an individual is, whether they tend to be more logical or sensitive to others when making decisions, and more. The value comes from the Myers-Briggs® Test’s ability to condense trends into comprehensible data.
ENFP Personality Types (Extroverted-Intuitive-Feeling-Perceiving) and Career Choice.
ENFPs are enthusiastic and imaginative individuals. They see life as being full of possibilities, and often approach opportunities by committing themselves quickly and effortlessly to new initiatives and courses of action. They quickly make connections between events, information, and people, and use this deep understanding to generate progress quickly towards their goals. ENFPs are extraordinarily insightful about people, and use their creativity to reach advanced, creative solutions to unforeseen circumstances. Unlike their more Thinking counterparts (ENTPs and ENTJs), they tend to avoid debate, conflict, and intensive problem-solving, and instead gravitate towards opportunities to build relationships with others. ENFPs are also able to use their keen insights about other individuals and social relationships to persuade others to pursue courses of action that they support or find appealing. For example, if an ENFP is trying to launch a new initiative, whether it be a musical in a theater organization, a menu item in a restaurant, or a counseling approach in a psychiatrist’s office, they will likely be able to convince other stakeholders to support their ideas and efforts.
ENFPs are also highly creative, adaptable, innovative people. They love to initiate new projects and work tirelessly toward successes. Similarly, they are inspired and stimulated by new opportunities, people, and ideas. If they find themselves forced to repeat a seemingly interminable task without any variation, they may become bored, resentful, and even depressed. ENFPs, should consider careers and workplace environments that offer flexibility to exercise their creativity. Outsiders often perceive ENFPs as lively and sociable, with a large and diverse circle of friends. While they have a broad range of interests, ENFP personality types still value deep, authentic relationships that allow them to express themselves openly and honestly.
Perhaps the greatest challenge for ENFPs in a professional environment is their distaste for routine and schedules. They often find it difficult to be punctual for meetings and to meet internal or external deadlines, and they are always experimenting with new, innovative ways to approach old problems. They find sticking to the “tried-and-true” incredibly boring and are constantly looking for ways to accomplish the same goals more efficiently, more effectively, or even just in a more enjoyable way. However, sometimes this creativity can go too far, and ENFPs can get a reputation for becoming scattered, easily distracted, or having trouble focusing. They might even be perceived as being difficult to work with, especially if they do not pay enough attention to deadlines or procedures. ENFPs should take steps to avoid this perception by setting reminders for themselves or by reaching out to a friend or coworker to assist with accountability.
There are two significant sectors of occupations that are most prevalent among ENFPs. The first involves working closely with people by providing counseling, teaching, or other services which help others become the best versions of themselves. Other examples might include fitness trainers or photographers. The second group of occupations involves the arts. ENFPs are often successful as musicians, dancers, painters, or in positions in the visual arts because of their passion and creativity. They tend to be free spirits, and enjoy freelancing, rather than being bound to an office environment. ENFPs need to have ways to release their creativity and energy in their professional lives. Another category of occupational success for ENFPs are those which involve caring for the environment, such as in forestry. Some common occupations ENFPs are known to enjoy are Bartender, Counseling Psychologist, Director of Religious Activities or Education, Fitness Trainer or Aerobics Instructor, Hairdresser, Hairstylist, or Cosmetologist, Psychiatrist, Public Relations Specialist, Recreation Worker, Rehabilitation Counselor, and Reporter or Correspondent.
ENFP Personality Types Goal Setting and Gathering Information.
Start Here ENFPs are dreamers. When it comes to setting goals, they often have many long-term aspirations, which may coincide with one another. For example, an individual may want to be a restaurateur and a performer, providing their guests with dinner and entertainment. However, ENFPs may have difficulty coming up with a detailed action plan for how they intend to reach their goals and may even lack long-term direction. They should establish specific, achievable objectives and then identify specific steps to achieve them. For example, if an ENFP wants to be a novelist, they should start, not by writing the first chapter, but by coming up with an outline of a story. Then, they can elaborate on each plot point and weave them together. It may also help to come up with intermediate plans. For instance, setting target dates for having each chapter completed, or even writing a certain number of words each day or each week. While this kind of schedule or routine may seem boring or even impractical for the creative process, it can help focus individuals with this personality type. They can also make the process more enjoyable by rewarding themselves at each milestone, for instance with a special treat.
Due to their adaptable nature, this type of personality will easily take advantage of unanticipated possibilities however they may not apply these circumstances toward their initial goals. They should use these opportunities to develop their established priorities by growing their ambitions. After establishing these goals and milestones, the next step is for ENFPs to gather information. In doing so, they might educate themselves about what steps they can take to achieve their goals. They might also find people who can encourage them and keep them accountable as they continue to make progress towards achieving this purpose. As ENFPs learn more about their options, they should ask themselves key questions – what is the work environment like? Who will they be working with and for? How is success measured? What key performance indicators will be expected, and how are raises structured? Ask about time off, health benefits, and any current projects that the team is working on. When preparing for interviews, ENFPs should write down a list of questions in order to not forget to ask these key questions. ENFP personality types enjoy speaking with others who are enthusiastic about career development and growth but should be aware to not be overwhelmed with options. This personality type has the tendency to overlook actualities and may miss relevant facts about a career. When gathering facts, it is important for ENFPs to widen their source of information. This could involve visiting a career library or reading statistical information perhaps at an online career government database regarding the potentiality of their options. ENFPs should also determine what is most important to them when choosing a career and create a “short list” of options which are most appealing to them. Narrowing their larger list of potentialities will provide this personality type with a more direct plan of action.
ENFP Personality Types and Networking.
It helps to have a network of contacts to reach out to and ENFPs typically have already established these connections. When speaking with other professionals, this personality type will have the ability to express their vehemence while communicating their strengths as an innovative collaborator. They are quick learners and will give the impression as such, but during interview sessions have a tendency to focus on potentialities. ENFPs should remember to emphasize how their people-oriented behavior can impact the organization immediately, and to keep potential successes to a minimal. ENFP personality types have also been known to be excessively communicative, resulting in ineffective networking. Taking the time to pause and give an interviewer time to explain the position thoroughly, will only allow for more information to be gathered, and increase the probability of an informed decision. Also, remembering the interviewer may be a part of an opposite personality dichotomy will also be useful. For example, a Thinking interviewer may view an ENFP as not possessing task-oriented skills. A Sensing interviewer could become vanquished by the amount of possibilities an ENFP has to offer. Finding information related to how different personalities react to others is a helpful tool when interviewing and during pre-interview network endeavors and can assist with personality development.
ENFP Personality Types and Decision-Making.
As ENFPs start to make decisions and commit to a course of action, they may have difficulty considering the rational repercussions of each option. This personality type will make decisions based on personal values and how the choice will affect close friends and family. Often the influence of these important people in an ENFPs life, will have an overwhelming effect resulting in choosing a career which may not be the best fit. This behavior will also have an effect on the length of time to which an ENFP makes a decision, hence repelling and postponing career choice.
A tool for ENFPs to utilize during this process is to create a cause and effect chart. This system allows these individuals to systematically consider the consequences of each opportunity by displaying how each will affect their own life. For example, if an offer is received which requires a lengthy commute, the effect will display the cost for travel or vehicle maintenance, and hours taken from personal downtime, which may not be beneficial if the original cause for new employment was to spend more time with others. This personality type often does not consider the logical repercussions of each opportunity presented and having this chart will assist with an educated decision. When making this chart, an ENFP may ignore information which is uncomfortable for them, so it is important to list as many cause and effect situations as possible. For example, this personality type may be offered a position of their dreams which is many miles away from their hometown, and they know that family and friends will find it upsetting for them to move. An ENFP often will negate the offer, simply because they do not want to upset their loved ones. Having any system to weigh pros and cons of alternatives will be key for ENFP personality types.
Another tool for an ENFP to speed-up their decision-making process is to set a deadline to which a decision must be executed and not stray from that date. This date should be one which was set during the goal setting phase of the process and should allow enough time for each step in the period proceeding. Many ENFPs have found that disclosing this “Decision Date” to family and friends can be a helpful way to see it through. Writing it down in an area which is seen daily can also be a helpful way to ensure a decision is made in a timely fashion. Most importantly, confidence in the decision made will improve career choice longevity and overall happiness. Taking the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) Assessment and knowing personality commonalities within particular dichotomies, can help guide the career exploration process by countering inherent behaviors which can lead to potential obstacles, allowing for the modification of these behaviors to secure occupational success.
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Learn More About the MBTI ENFP Personality Type
Explore additional information that delves deeper into the ENFP Personality Type by examining various personality and career based subjects:
- How the MBTI ENFP Type relates to Innovation
- How the MBTI ENFP Type relates to Project Management
- How the MBTI ENFP Type relates to Emotional Intelligence
- How the MBTI ENFP Type Relates to Leadership
- How the MBTI ENFP Type relates to Decision Making
Click on a link below to read more about different MBTI Personality Types
Introduction to Type (Isabel Briggs Myers, 1998, CPP Inc.)
Introduction to Type and Careers (Allen L. Hammer, 2007, CPP Inc.)