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Our personalities often dictate the way we live our lives. They can impact the career paths we choose, who we date, and even the hobbies we enjoy. So, it's no surprise that many people are interested in learning about their personality type and how it affects their day-to-day.
Some of us may be painfully shy, some of us are the life of the party, while many of us may have a blend of these elements. Sometimes our personalities may change over time or based on the situation.
For example, the late musician Prince was an outgoing firecracker on stage but very introverted and low-key in real life.
As we look at ourselves and others around us, we may find some INTJ personalities and some ENTJ ones. These two types represent levels of introversion and extroversion.
Let's explore the key differences between these Myers-Briggs defined personalities and how they approach life, work, and relationships.
What is an INTJ personality type?
INTJ stands for Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Judging. People with this personality type are often seen as quiet, logical, thoughtful, and analytical. They like to spend time alone to process their thoughts and often have a strong and imaginative inner world.
Do you prefer to think before you speak or have vivid day fantasies about what could be? If so, you may be an INTJ.
They are often drawn to solitary careers like writing or inventing. You may see many people with this personality in the world of science, mathematics, or engineering. One famous INTJ was Isaac Newton, who discovered gravity.
What is an ENTJ personality type?
ENTJ stands for Extroverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Judging. People with this personality type are outgoing, analytical, and often find themselves in leadership roles. They are quick thinkers and often have a lot of energy. These types of people are “doers” and are often very action oriented.
People with ENTJ characteristics are natural-born leaders and are often drawn to careers in business or politics. Famous ENTJs include Hilary Clinton and Naomi Campbell.
What Do ENTJ and INTJ Personalities Have in Common?
While one is introverted and the other is extroverted, ENTJs and INTJs actually have quite a bit in common. They both use intuition as their primary way of processing information and they are both logical thinkers.
They are also both judging personalities, meaning they like structure and order in their lives.
Both of these personality types are good at details and getting things done. And, perhaps most importantly, they are both incredibly intelligent.
13 Key Differences between INTJs and ENTJs
Now that we've explored the basics and similarities of each personality type, let's take a closer look at the key differences.
1. Introverted Vs Extroversion
The first key difference between these two personality types is that INTJs are introverted while ENTJs are extroverted. This means that ENTJs are more likely to enjoy being around people and seek out social interaction. They are often the life of the party and enjoy being in groups.
INTJs, on the other hand, may prefer to spend more time alone. They are often introspective and like to have time to process their thoughts. When they are around people, they are more comfortable in small groups or one-on-one interactions.
In other words, your INTJ friend would feel more comfortable engaging at an intimate dinner party or grabbing a drink with you (and maybe one more person) at Happy Hour.
Got an invite to the biggest party of the year and need a companion? Save the invite for your ENTJ buddy. Your INTJ pal would be bored with the small talk.
2. Intuition Vs Sensing
INTJs use more intuition compared to ENTJs. Intuition is all about understanding the world around us and making connections between seemingly disparate ideas. This is the type of thinking that leads to big-picture thinking and creative problem-solving.
ENTJs often prefer to work with tangible evidence based on concrete facts and actionable items. This is the type of thinking that has the goal of seeing immediate results even if they are not fully fleshed out yet. Their sensory characteristics make them crave worldly experiences and activities.
An INTJ might come up with a new business idea and an ENTJ will be the one to help make it a reality. Picture how ENTJ Steve Jobs was able to successfully be the face of Apple while leaving the actual product development to his INTJ friend and co-founder Steve Wozniak.
Jobs was known for his dynamic presentations, while Wozniak was the mastermind behind the scenes making it all work.
3. Trying New Things
ENTJs are more likely to try new activities whereas INTJs may prefer to stick with what they know. This difference can be traced back to the previous point on intuition vs sensing.
Because ENTJs use more sensing, they crave new experiences and things. They are more likely to pursue new challenges and adventures. However, an INTJ can deal with a new challenge or complex problem when it comes to them – just give them time to sort out the details.
4. Leadership Style
Both personalities can make great leaders who use different methods. Sure, an ENTJ is more likely to seek out leadership roles, but an INTJ can be a great leader too. The main difference is one must be out front while the other type is more comfortable behind the scenes.
ENTJs are more likely to take a more hands-on approach to leadership. They are often the type of people who like to be in charge and give orders. You won't ever question who the boss in the room is when they have an ENTJ personality. This person has no problems running for President or taking on a CEO position.
Your INTJ boss isn't likely to micromanage any subordinates. They may not be as visible, but they are often the ones thinking two steps ahead, leading the team to success. While this person won't volunteer to take charge, they can handle the job if it falls into their lap.
5. Learning Style
Both types have a great deal of intellect, but they go about acquiring knowledge in different ways. ENTJs are more likely to want to learn by doing. They thrive in group brainstorming sessions or hands-on projects.
INTJs, on the other hand, often prefer to learn by observing, collecting data, and researching. These independent thinkers like to take in information and process it on their own.
If you want to find out about a range of subjects, an INTJ would be the perfect person to ask. An INTJ stays hungry for knowledge and can quickly assimilate new information to the point where they are known as walking encyclopedias.
6. Communication Style
When it comes to good communication, the INTJ vs ENTJ debate is a close one. However, ENTJs may have an edge because of their extroverted nature. They are better at drawing people out and getting them to open up.
INTJs, on the other hand, are better at giving advice and listening more. They often have a more detached perspective, which allows them to see the situation more objectively. This is why INTJs make great problem-solvers.
When it comes to communicating, both types are likely to be concise and direct. However, the ENTJ may be blunt while the INTJ is more likely to consider your feelings as they choose their words.
For example, an ENTJ boss may say your performance “sucks”, but the INTJ will be able to present you with an accurate yet diplomatic assessment.
7. Work Environment
The ideal work environment for an INTJ vs ENTJ can also differ. ENTJs often prefer a more fast-paced work environment with plenty of opportunities for social interaction. They like to be kept busy and may feel antsy if they have too much free time.
INTJs, on the other hand, often prefer a more calm and quiet work environment. Remote work can be ideal for them since it allows them to work independently with minimal distractions.
When it comes to making decisions, ENTJs are more likely to rely on their gut instinct. They are often spontaneous and may not spend a lot of time mulling over their options. An ENTJ has no problem making a plan and adding details later.
INTJs, on the other hand, are more likely to analyze all the available data before making a decision. They often need time to process their options before they can commit to a course of action. Such critical thinkers make great leaders since they are less likely to make impulsive decisions.
The INTJ aims for perfection as they analyze and plan their projects to the smallest detail. This can be a strength when it comes to getting things done but it can also be a weakness. In the wrong environment, their methodical planning can make them seem inflexible and unyielding.
ENTJs also strive for perfectionism but in a different way. They are less likely to get bogged down in the details and more likely to focus on the big picture. This can help them stay motivated and see a project through to the end.
10. Handling Stress
The ENTJ personality type is more likely to thrive in a high-stress environment. They are often able to stay calm and collected in the face of adversity. Having a lot of self-confidence in their abilities usually helps them.
INTJs, on the other hand, may get nervous under pressure. They may have a hard time thinking clearly and making decisions when they are feeling stressed.
Such individuals need time to process information and they can be perfectionists. Once they get over the hump, they are often able to work through stress more effectively.
11. Coping with Change
ENTJs are often able to adapt to change easily since they are spontaneous and thrive in a fast-paced environment. They are also good at making quick decisions, which can help them deal with change in a calm and collected manner.
An example of this would be an ENTJ wedding planner that won't skip a beat due to rain at an outdoor wedding.
INTJs often need time to adjust to new situations beyond their control. An example of this would be an INTJ who is a teacher that suddenly had to teach their classes online due to the pandemic.
Of course, over time, that same teacher may end up creating a whole new online teaching platform or method based on their research and experience in the new environment.
INTJs and ENTJs often approach relationships in different ways. ENTJs are more likely to be the ones to take the lead in a relationship. They may be more likely to initiate contact and they are often good at planning dates or other outings.
If you are in a relationship with an INTJ, they are more likely to be the one to want some alone time. They may not be as spontaneous as an ENTJ and often need time to process their emotions. However, an INTJ can be a very loyal and supportive partner. Unlike an ENTJ, the INTJ may take a while to make the first move, but they are often worth the wait.
When it comes to parenting, ENTJs are often the ones to take charge. They may be more likely to be authoritarian and they are often good at making decisions quickly.
This can be a strength when it comes to dealing with tantrums or other problems, but it can also be a weakness if the ENTJ is too strict. A fictional character example of an ENTJ parent is Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones.
INTJs often prefer a more relaxed parenting style. They are often good at giving their children space to grow and they are often patient. However, they may struggle with being assertive unless they feel it is absolutely necessary.
A fictional character example of an INTJ parent is Professor Charles Xavier from the X-Men.
Which One Is More Common?
The INTJ personality type is rarer than the ENTJ personality type. INTJs make up about 2% of the population while ENTJs make up about 3%. However, both personality types are considered to be very rare.
Final Thoughts About INTJ Vs ENTJs
Don't assume that introverts and extroverts can't have overlapping qualities. As you can see, the INTJ and ENTJ personality types have a lot in common. Even their key differences can be complementary (for instance, both make great leaders with different methods).
If you are lucky enough to know someone with either one of these personality types, cherish them. Whether the person is a vibrant CEO or an unassuming teacher, INTJs and ENTJs often have a lot to offer society.
For another interesting read, be sure to check out ISFJ Vs INFJ: Six Differences For These Personality Types to understand more about the intricacies of two different introverts.
Finally, if you want to identify YOUR personality type, then take one of these 11 personality tests to better understand what makes you tick.