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Career Planning: Personality & Careers: ESTJ


Extravert, Sensing, Thinking, Judging - ESTJs represent approximately 13% of the population. ESTJs live in the present world with a focus on facts and concrete needs. They are aggressive, analytic, conscientious, decisive and direct, efficient, fact-minded individuals. ESTJs are constantly scanning their personal environment to make sure that everything is running smoothly and systematically. They have a clear set of standards and beliefs and honor traditions and laws. They expect the same of others, and have no patience or understanding of individuals who do not value these systems. ESTJs like to see quick results for their efforts and they value competence and efficiency (1,2,8).

ESTJs are take-charge people, with a clear vision of the way that things should be, and leadership roles come naturally. They are self-confident and aggressive, talented at devising systems and plans for action, and at being able to see what steps need to be taken to complete a specific task. They can sometimes be very demanding and critical and they are likely to express themselves without reserve if they feel someone isn't meeting their standards. ESTJs are straightforward and honest and can be taken at face-value (1,2,8).


An ESTJs Career Choice Should Probably Include...

  1. Work that takes into account their breadth of interests, reliance on facts, and their logical and analytical thinking patterns.
  2. A chance to interact with people, and have fun, in a stable and predictable environment.
  3. An organized and efficient environment with explicit rules and expectations and standards to follow.
  4. The opportunity to have, or grow into, a leadership role.
  5. A busy and active workplace, where they work with many different people throughout the day and everyone works together to get things done.
  6. The opportunity to hold a high level of responsibility, where their experiences and opinions are respected.
  7. An opportunity to work with like minded people to create order and structure in their environment.
  8. Work that is of a practical nature, where they can see the results of their work and where their contributions are measured in fair, logical ways.
  9. Projects based in the here-and-now rather than abstract and philosophical projects.

An ESTJs Strengths are...

ESTJs are friendly, outgoing, and honest. They tend to be traditional and conservative in their views and are comfortable expressing their opinions. Because ESTJs trust their own personal experiences, they are most interested in working with real things, and solving immediate problems rather than dealing with theory or possibilities. Usually well-organized and efficient, ESTJs work hard to meet or exceed the expectations others have for them. They are practical and realistic and want everything to make sense and be in order (1,2,7,8).


ESTJs are direct and frank, liking to get busy, stay busy, and have a lot to show for their efforts. Using logic to draw their conclusions, ESTJs like to make decisions and get on with their next project. Responsible and conscientious, they enjoy being in charge and therefore are usually great managers, able to keep others organized and on track (1,2,7,8).


ESTJs are good at...

  • analyzing and bringing into logical order the outer world of events
  • working hard, doing their "fair share" of the work, and contributing to a team effort
  • communicating directly and honestly, without a hidden agenda
  • thinking logically and pragmatically
  • organizing projects and developing efficient systems
  • making tough decisions and giving constructive criticism
  • applying their clear standards of what is correct and right to what goes on around them
  • using available resources and solving problems as they arise
  • setting and meeting deadlines and goals

An ESTJs Weaknesses are...

Because ESTJs are comfortable with structure, they can sometimes try to impose it on others and be rather rigid in their style. Their strong opinions are sometimes communicated as judgments and harsh criticism, even if they are not intended to be. Without others telling them, they may not think about the impact their decisions have on people. They need to consider the feelings of people around them, even if they do not completely understand them (1,2,7,8).


Not particularly interested in possibilities, ESTJs sometimes resist considering anything other than proven experience. They don't naturally question what options may exist, if they aren't obvious at the moment. In their haste to make a decision, ESTJs sometimes don't wait to gather all the information they may need to make a sound choice. Taking time to look at all the information can help them be more effective (1,2,7,8).


Things to watch out for...

ESTJs fear a bankrupt nation that abandons its heritage and its obligation to a prescribed set of standards. Like all SJs, ESTJs feel the need to earn their place in a just society. ESTJs believe that membership is ensured through responsible serving and the threat of being forsaken or cast out will make them feel insecure. They will worry about dereliction of duties and betrayal. The resulting stress can cause ESTJs to redouble their efforts at controlling disorder. In an effort to correct what they feel is out of place, they will direct their anger and frustration at what they consider the irresponsible behavior of others. At these times, others may feel the ESTJ is not responsive to their point of view and is jumping to unjustified conclusions (1,2,7,8).


If stress continues, the ESTJ may become physically immobilized and experience illness, unpleasant bodily sensations, and fatigue. Feeling incapacitated, the ESTJ dreads the thought of being deserted and begins to feel increasingly unappreciated and left out. Their grievance list usually includes those to whom they are responsible; thus it may appear that the ESTJ is neglecting their own obligations by blaming others. While exempting themselves from their own responsibilities, the ESTJ may henpeck and nag others. This can cause those who feel hindered by the ESTJ's complaints to feel defiant and to rebel further (1,2,7,8). Other concerns to watch for:

  • the tendency to be too rigid, and to become overly detail-oriented
  • speaking over others or intimidating them with a forceful style
  • making decisions for others based on their own perspectives and observations
  • jumping to conclusions before gathering all the information
  • dismissing ideas as being implausible because they have not yet been proven
  • not seeing the long-term consequences of their decisions
  • holding others to their own high standards
  • only noticing and commenting on the flaws, rather than the positive attributes of projects or people

Developmental Needs: It is important for ESTJs to develop patience and a slower pace when dealing with others. Thoughtfully considering facts and the human side of concepts/plans is necessary before drawing conclusions to avoid erroneous decisions. It is important to acknowledge the contribution of others and ESTJs may need to develop this skill more fully. They need to work on staying open to new information and developing their intuition.


Careers ESTJs Might Consider

BulletElectrical Engineer

BulletMilitary Officer

BulletBudget Analyst

BulletInsurance Agent

BulletSocial Services Worker

BulletSchool Principal

BulletData Base Manager

BulletCity Works Technician

BulletBank/Loan Officer

BulletConstruction Worker

BulletPurchasing Manager

BulletProject Manager


BulletComputer Sales

BulletTeacher: Technical/Trades


BulletComputer Systems Analyst


BulletPolice/Probation Officer

BulletFuneral Director

BulletCommunity Health Worker

BulletApplied Engineer

BulletClinical Technician

BulletSecurity Guard


BulletPhysical Therapist



BulletReal Estate Sales

BulletGeneral Contractor





BulletStock Broker



BulletPhysician: General Medicine

BulletOffice Manager

BulletComputer Analyst

BulletPublic Relations Specialist

BulletFactory Supervisor

BulletCredit Analyst


BulletSchool Administrator

BulletMechanical Engineer


  1. Looking at Type and Careers, by Charles R. Martin, Ph.D., Copyright 1995 by Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT)
  2. Looking at Type: The Fundamentals, by Charles R. Martin, Ph.D., Copyright 1997 by Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT)
  3. Jedi Girl: Careers and Jobs - The Jedi Girl Internet Community - Concept and Design by Robert Jon Religa
  4. Career Manager (US Department of the Interior)
  5. The Virtual Office - may no longer be at this URL
  6. Hardcopies from an Internet resource based on the Kiersey Bates material - URL unknown/no longer available
  7. Personality Types Under Stress
  8. The Personality Page

    Bullet"What Can I Do With A Major In...?" Bullet Personality & Careers Bullet


Ron Vick, MA, LPC
Counselor / Academic Advisor
Int'l Student Advisor



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