Wherever they may be on the career ladder, Architects (INTJs) want to pursue their professional goals according to their own standards. And if any personality type has high standards for themselves, it’s almost certainly Architects.
In theory, this attitude makes for a model employee and coworker. And in many ways, Architects are exactly that. But people with this personality type may be harsh or dismissive toward coworkers they don’t respect – and unfortunately, losing Architects’ respect can be all too easy. In particular, Architects may struggle to work with colleagues who prioritize convenience over innovation or socializing over success.
Architects are known for their independence. Their worst nightmare would be a micromanaging boss who monopolizes their time with pointless meetings, insists on useless rules, or appraises employees’ performance based on how likable they seem rather than their actual merits.
Titles mean little to Architects, and they often struggle to defer to a manager they consider less intelligent than themselves. They might also find it difficult to restrain themselves from offering their bosses feedback and criticism – an approach that, depending on the boss, can backfire. In the real world, not all bosses will be as logical or open-minded as Architects might prefer. But that doesn’t mean that people with this personality type should allow a less-than-ideal manager to hold them back.
Architects can use their creativity and ingenuity to expand their responsibilities and develop their expertise – even if they don’t have the independence that they crave. To do this, they may need to prioritize building a productive and respectful relationship with their manager, no matter how far from perfect that person may be.
Few Architects choose jobs that require constant teamwork or social interaction. To these personalities, most team-building techniques and group meetings are a waste of time. And chitchat, gossip, and office politics – well, those can be nothing short of workplace plagues. Even a brainstorming session, normally a delight for Architects, can become tedious if it just goes in circles without leading to clear action.
Fortunately, their determination and focus often enable Architects to produce effective results, even without the help of others. That’s not to say that Architects can’t work with others – in fact, they may achieve some of their greatest successes this way. Relentlessly curious and capable, they can make for excellent collaborators. People with this personality type may never enjoy pairing up with just anyone, but if they look more closely, they often find that at least some of their coworkers deserve their respect. And in the company of trusted colleagues, Architects’ brainstorming sessions may become even more electric.
Though they may be surprised to hear it, Architect personalities can make great leaders. In the workplace, they rarely throw around their authority just to prove that they’re in charge. Instead, they look for ways to promote innovation and effectiveness – even if that means breaking with established hierarchies.
Generally speaking, Architects prefer to treat those who work for them as equals. Rather than micromanaging, these personalities aim to direct broader strategies while letting other people handle day-to-day activities. That’s not to say that they’re completely hands-off, however. Architect bosses want to know exactly what’s going on and when, and they're always ready to drill into any level of detail necessary to find out.
These managers respect and reward proactive behavior, delegating responsibilities to employees with the strongest critical-thinking skills. But this independence isn’t just granted – it’s required. Employees who struggle to direct themselves – who just want to be told what to do – may have a hard time meeting Architects’ standards. And anyone who tries to cover up bad results with flattery or excuses is likely to be disappointed, as those strategies almost never fool Architects.