What is the difference between an INTJ and an ENTJ personality type? A lot of people get confused over whether they are an INTJ or ENTJ. Luckily, I’ve grown up with an ENTJ brother, and I’m an INTJ. So, hopefully this post will help you learn some of the basic differences and similarities between the two types.
INTJ vs ENTJ
First, let’s talk about some similarities:
- ENTJs and INTJs share the same cognitive functions, but they are stacked differently. The INTJ’s cognitive functions are Ni—Te—Fi—Se. The ENTJ’s cognitive functions are Te—Ni—Se—Fi. The INTJ’s dominant mode is one of perceiving information and making connections. The ENTJ’s dominant mode is one of using objective logic to make decisions, to organize, and to control their outer world.
- Both have a very logical thought process. David Keirsey called all of the NT types “rationals.” It’s easy to talk to or joke with an ENTJ. You will likely understand each other quite easily. My ENTJ brother will often blurt out something that I’m actually thinking, and we’ll laugh or think of the same jokes or point out the irony in a situation.
- INTJs and ENTJs both hate inefficiency. If we see something that is inefficient, we have a strong drive to make it more efficient.
Both are relatively rare types. CAPT.org has INTJs at 2-4%, and ENTJs at 2-5% of the population. Both are also very rare types for females.
- INTJs and ENTJs both hate blatant ignorance. We can both see through a stupid argument immediately.
- Both ENTJs and INTJs are good at planning and strategy. INTJs are the best planners, but ENTJs aren’t too far behind.
- INTJs and ENTJs are capable of achieving a lot in life. ENTJs tend to earn one of the highest salary figures, INTJ usually comes in at a few points lower. This is likely due to the fact that ENTJs are more willing to be social, are natural leaders, and they are very forceful in pushing their plans through.
ENTJ vs INTJ Differences
Okay, so those are some of the similarities you’ll notice between the two types. However, what are some of the differences? How can you tell if you’re an ENTJ or INTJ? Here are some considerations:
- ENTJs can tolerate much more social interaction. They’re stimulated by it. INTJs resist social interaction and are greatly drained by it. My ENTJ brother works as a manager at a retail store, and he also works part-time as a security guard in a mall (sometimes he works 50-60 hours!). In his off time, he is usually going on a date with some girl, going to a party, or hanging with a friend. If I had to be in the public that much, it would take a pry bar to pry me out of my house. In fact, most INTJs won’t like working retail very much or managing people directly.
- ENTJ better speakers, whereas INTJs better writers. ENTJs think as they speak and are very quick-witted. INTJs think before they speak, and they can lose their train of thought easily. (Dr. Adrian Rogers is my favorite preacher, and I think he was an ENTJ). According to the book Personality Type and Religious Leadership, ENTJs were listed as one of the types most likely to be a strong preacher. INTJs were likely to have more spiritual depth. Both were listed as good potential leaders (p. 55).
- ENTJs talk in commands. They are natural leaders, and their dominant function (Te) leads them to be blunt and directive in their speech. INTJs have Te as a secondary function, so they are also blunt, but it is much less than the ENTJ. My brother will walk into a room and say, “Fix me a plate of food.” I’ll walk into a room and ask, “Will you make me a plate of food?”
- ENTJs seem to enjoy exerting influence over people directly. They like to boss people around. INTJs like to exert influence over people indirectly. We like to have control, but we don’t get as much of a thrill out of telling people what to do.
- ENTJs are more adventuresome and thrill-seeking, INTJs more reserved. My brother is willing to try new things, fly in a helicopter, etc. My brother likes to take a cruise, go to football games, etc. I like to stay in my comfort zone and tend to take less vacations or go to fewer social events. In fact, I mostly like to stay at home and read, surf the internet, and write articles like this.
- ENTJs are bolder leaders. You don’t have to ask the ENTJ to lead people. They’ll start bossing people around on their own (which can be obnoxious). INTJs lead from behind the scenes. We may start a large business, yet you’ll never know who we are. If an ENTJ starts a business, they’ll let you know they are in charge.
- ENTJs tend to have more dating partners and friends. INTJs have fewer dating partners and friends (or no friends).
- ENTJs don’t plan as extensively as INTJs. They will plan some, but they feel more comfortable putting plans into action due to their dominant extroverted thinking. INTJs will spend more time planning and strategizing and looking for possibilities in a situation due to their introverted intuition.
- ENTJs are more likely to brag about accomplishments or possessions, whereas INTJs will conceal their accomplishments or possessions due to their private nature.
- ENTJ confrontational, loud, and have a short fuse to anger. INTJs are quiet and have a long fuse with a big bomb is at the end of it (it takes a lot to make them truly angry). INTJs can clam up when annoyed. They can also be confrontational, but they’re more likely to get annoyed and cut you out.
- Introverted Feeling is the ENTJ’s least developed function, and therefore, they have trouble understanding their own morals, values, and feelings. An INTJ is usually quite in tune with their own feelings and stances on things.
How Do You Know if You’re an INTJ or ENTJ
The biggest thing to consider is the extroversion and introversion part, because I do think that is quite a big difference between these two types. You have to remember that INTJs are, for the most part, loners. They are one of the most independent and introverted personality types. ENTJs are not. They are bold leaders who aren’t afraid to hang out, start a conversation, etc.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
- Which cognitive function do you use most? Are you quick to put things into action (ENTJ), or do you spend lots of time planning and thinking first (INTJ)?
- Do you think quickly on your feet (ENTJ), or do you need to time sit and collect your thoughts (INTJ)?
- Are you the first to volunteer for something (ENTJ), or do you sit quietly and like to observe people (INTJ)?
- Were you outgoing in school, taking charge of group projects, captain of the football team (ENTJ), or were you quiet, reflective, and spending much time reading, studying, playing games (INTJ)?
- Do you have a lot of friends and acquaintances (ENTJ), or are you somewhat of a loner (INTJ)?
- When you give a presentation, are you good at thinking of things as you talk and working from a basic outline? Or are you more likely to need a lot of prep time and/or read from a manuscript.