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Work Motivation - ENTP and ENFP Occupations and Careers Advice

Deidre has a Masters in applied linguistics and translation for her 20 years overseas. She's worked as a certified provider of the MBTI®.

We have the choice of situations that energize us and drain us. Certain things or occupations can build us up or tear us down. Such knowledge, often determined in career or personality tests, can help guide us in team building at work or in managing our own lives. Employee engagement and motivation can be better encouraged by considering individual personality types. Let's look at the ENTP and ENFP personalities.

Two similar personalities

by joshdeweese

by joshdeweese

Why Personality Type?

Personality type is a way to understand what keeps us going and what energizes us. We have a natural inborn preference that determines certain kinds of work situations as more comfortable and therefore more enjoyable. Careers and occupations with these work situations are more ideally suited for us and provides some of the how to motivate employees.

Each of the 16 Myers-Briggs® personality types uses mental energy in a unique way. This is an important element behind employee productivity.

What personality type is

Our 4 Mental Functions

There are four mental functions, or processes, according to Jung's typology; two opposite ways of gathering information and two opposite ways of making conclusions. The two ways of gathering of information has to do with how we Perceive, and the two ways for making conclusions has to do with how we Judge.

 4 Mental Functions  



Through detailed facts from experiences 

ways we gather information 


Through global wholes of possible interrelationships 






On objective logical analysis of the information

ways we make conclusions


On the value of the information


We all use each of these four mental functions. A basic way we differ from each other, though, is how we use each of the four. Ever wonder why siblings brought up by the same parents in the same household in the same location can still be so different? You've got it! The way each uses the four mental functions can make huge differences!

The Favorite Mental Function

Each person uses one of the four mental functions as their favorite. This favorite (or dominant) mental function uses the lion's share of a person's psychological energy. This favorite mental function is therefore the most conscious of the four -- the one we are most aware of and can most readily control, or direct.

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This is how we can know what energizes us mentally! We very much enjoy using our favorite mental function and tend to acquire a lot of experience and competence with it. We naturally tend to choose to take on tasks, relationships and even careers, that energize us in this way

ENTP and ENFP Energizers

Let's look at what energizes the ENTP and ENFP Myers-Briggs personality types. You share the same favorite mental function, iNtuition, to gather information as patterns or global wholes. As extraverts you use this in the outside world.

Here are the iNuition activities, environments and resources you ENTPs and ENFPs most enjoy and derive benefit from, and therefore are what energize you at work.

Energizing environments and resources

Activities You Enjoy Environments You Enjoy Resources 

Challenge & variety!

Autonomy in doing tasks 

Say ‘no’ selectively 

Create innovative & effective solutions 

Be taken seriously 

Prioritize tasks and delegation of them 

Aesthetic self-expression 

Competence and skills appreciated 

Plan, make lists 

Cooperative working together in a supportive way 

Can delegate implementation of solutions

Attention to physical needs; rest, exercise


Enough unstructured time


How the Likes of the ENTP and ENFP Differ

In addition to these common features, you ENTPs tend to have a natural ability to keep different parts of your lives separated, having Thinking as your second favorite mental function. You tend to experience greater work stressors, particularly incompetence of others, than ENFPs, but find it easier to balance work and home lives. You ENTPs also tend to be the most dissatisfied of all types with the opportunities to use your talents and training.

By contrast, you ENFPs seem to find your work to be minimally stressful. However, you tend to find it difficult to balance your work and home lives. You ENFPs find satisfaction in the people you work with, having Feeling as your second favorite mental function. You find, however, conflicts and lack of support to be quite stressful.

Sensing vs Intuitive

Typical Resources and Remedies

You ENTPs and ENFPs will know you have become a veteran of life's struggles by having learned to

  • Better structure & plan
  • Broaden perspective
  • Appreciate the value of facts & details

Realizing what energizes you, in particular, is a way to grasp what it is that you can do to counteract many of life's energy drainers. You managers may find, when you know an employee's personality type, you can better motivate your staff through engaging them in work activities and environments that energize, rather than drain.

Managing our own activities, environments and resources, or that of our staff, may help avoid low morale and even staff attrition more often than not. I encourage you to give this a think, and a try!

© 2010 Deidre Shelden

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