For people with the INTP personality type (Logicians), the ingredients for workplace satisfaction are fairly simple, at least on paper. INTPs crave intellectual stimulation, freedom to pursue their ideas, and opportunities to solve challenging puzzles. And if they can fulfill these needs with minimal social obligations and humdrum administrative tasks, even better!
Though some people with this personality type may scoff at the notion, they often do their best work in collaboration with others. INTPs tend to live in their heads, coming up with thoughts and insights faster than they know what to do with them. They may sometimes feel irritated when managers or coworkers force them to slow down and figure out how to implement their ideas – but in the long term, such colleagues can be the secret to INTPs’ success.
Under the right conditions, INTP employees are innovative and resourceful, easily wrapping their mind around whatever complex problems are placed in front of them. Their distinct ability to immerse themselves in tasks and their knack for conceptualizing innovative solutions can make them invaluable assets to their workplace. However, their preference for solitary work and their sometimes forgetfulness of routine tasks or details can occasionally be seen as a drawback.
INTPs are often tempted to put off tasks that seem boring or beneath them, but until they “pay their dues” by doing these tasks, their bosses probably won’t grant them the freedom and latitude that they crave. Although people with this personality type might wish that they could just skip ahead to the interesting stuff, they need to prove themselves to their managers first.
There’s good news, though: Their time at the bottom of the job ladder can actually help them build new skills and habits that will help them succeed later on. These personalities have many strengths, but completing projects doesn’t tend to be one of them. INTPs can chafe at the oversight and limitations that they encounter early in their careers – or they can use the additional accountability and structure to their advantage, learning to become more effective at turning their ideas into reality.
At times, INTPs may see their colleagues not as a group of people to socialize and work with but rather as a series of potential distractions who sometimes provide useful knowledge. This isn’t to say that these personalities never enjoy their coworkers’ company, but the prospect of watercooler chitchat isn’t going to get them out of bed in the morning.
That said, they can benefit from their colleagues more than they might realize. By surrounding themselves with people who challenge them, INTP personalities can make sure that they’re actually doing their best work. And although they aren’t exactly social butterflies, they often find that the workday goes by a little faster when they have a chance to bounce their ideas off of coworkers they respect.
INTPs who build positive relationships are more likely to get asked to contribute their ideas and expertise to new projects. If they want to stay on the cutting edge of the most interesting new things happening at their workplace, these personalities would do well to establish themselves as helpful collaborators, not lone wolves.
INTPs generally don’t care about having power over others, but they often enjoy management positions. When they’re in charge, people with this personality type can delegate the administrative tasks that make their eyes glaze over and focus on the good stuff: coming up with new ideas.
As managers, INTPs tend to be tolerant and flexible. They’re open to suggestions (as long as those suggestions are logical, of course), and they allow their employees a fair amount of freedom. But this freedom comes at a cost – INTP managers have high standards, and they expect others to grasp their insights instantly and provide their own in equal measure.
Bosses with this personality type can have a reputation for being exacting. They quickly pick up on discrepancies in their employees’ work, and they may not hold back when it comes to doling out negative feedback. As they gain experience, INTP managers often discover that balancing criticism with praise and encouragement allows their team to enjoy higher morale – and, just as importantly, better results.