Every individual makes hundreds if not thousands of decisions every day – from what to have for breakfast to how to optimize a business to when to discuss sensitive issues with a friend or partner. However, most of us pay little attention to how we make our own decisions or how others make theirs, unless, of course, we disagree with them. Fortunately for us, Hirsh and Hirsh (2007) have not only divided decision making into five core processes (approaching a decision, generating options, committing to an option, implementing a decision, and reflecting on the decision), but they have also analyzed how Myers-Briggs® Personality Types (MBTI® Types) can affect how and why people make decisions. With these insights, we can learn more about how we make our own decisions and how others make theirs, depending on their personality type.
For instance, when faced with a new decision-making opportunity, INTP personality types eagerly investigate every detail of an issue, and attempt to find any flaws in logic or unexamined assumptions as they do so. They tend to ask many questions, which may come across as argumentative or confrontational, but often, their inquiries are rooted in genuine curiosity. As they begin to generate options for different courses of action, they enjoy exploring each idea’s potential, its consequences and its implications, regardless of how unusual or seemingly absurd the idea may be. Because of their introverted nature, INTPs may have a difficult time carefully considering others’ input or involving others in the brainstorming process—instead, they prefer to brainstorm and think alone. As a result, they may wish to try to systematically ask for input and try to ask others for their positions, opinions, and ideas.
When it comes to committing to a course of action, INTP Personality Types tend to be highly rational, using objective criteria to determine which possibility out of multiple options is optimal. They focus more on practicality and results than on how others may feel about particular topics, and as a result, they may come across as stubborn, especially when some do not understand the logic of their decision, or if they have different values when making decisions. However, INTPs would also do well to try to understand the subjectivity inherent in any decision-making process as well as how any decision has a real, material impact on people. Not every situation can be fully anticipated, and there cannot be infinite contingency plans. While INTPs are heavily risk-averse, they need to learn to accept that sometimes the risk associated with an action (even if it is not ideal) is preferable to the consequences of inaction. Furthermore, most decisions are not final and unchangeable – often, courses of action can be modified to consider new information or changes in the decision.
As INTP Personality Types reflect on their decisions after the fact, they tend to be honest and open. They see decisions as opportunities for learning from mistakes, and continuing to find areas of improvement. They are also heavily invested in their own place – how they influenced the success or failure of a decision. That said, they tend to be perfectionists, sometimes focusing on minor issues rather than the “big picture”. They can learn a lot from more macro-level or optimistic personality types that find it easier to zoom out and see the greater impact of their decisions.
Click on one of these corresponding popular INTP Careers for detailed information including Career Stats, Income Stats, Daily Tasks and Required Education: Actuary/Risk Professional, Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators, Architectural Drafters, Archivists, Art Directors, Food Science Technician, Geographer, Geoscientist, Librarian, Network and Computer Systems Administrators
Learn More About the MBTI® INTP Personality Type
Explore Our INTP Personality Type Page For Detailed Information on The INTP Personality Type
Explore additional information that delves deeper into the INTP Personality Type by examining various personality and career based subjects:
- How the MBTI INTP Type relates to Innovation
- How the MBTI INTP Type relates to Project Management
- How the MBTI INTP Type relates to Emotional Intelligence
- How the MBTI INTP Type relates to Leadership
- How the MBTI INTP Type relates to Communication
- How the MBTI INTP Type and Learning Styles
Click on a link below to read more about different MBTI Personality Types
Introduction to Type and Decision Making. (Hirsh, K., & Hirsh E. CPP. 2007)