ENTP vs INTJ – these two personality types sound pretty different just by looking at their acronyms.
But are they really, though?
As an INTJ, I can testify there are some key differences between the two MBTI types.
But there are also some important ways they’re rather similar.
And today, we’ll cover both.
So let’s dive straight in.
What’s ENTP like?
This personality type is communicative, curious, and impulsive. They enjoy a good debate, which allows them to showcase their knowledge and perspectives.
ENTPs are pretty rare. They make up just about 2–5% of the population. So good chances are, you might have never met one.
Now, if you did, how would you know?
Let’s take a closer look at its cognitive functions. Here they are, sorted in the order they’re most used:
- Extroverted intuition – ENTPs are brainstormers, and they express their ideas out loud. They search for patterns and connections to create theories and predict outcomes. Before settling on the right one, ENTPs like exploring their options first.
- Introverted thinking – ENTPs apply logic and reasoning to understand a situation or a problem. Because it’s introverted, it’s focused on bringing order to their inner worlds.
- Extroverted feeling – this function focuses on values. It helps ENTPs consider other people’s emotions and priorities when assessing their actions. However, it’s often undeveloped, which is why ENTPs might appear unkind.
- Introverted sensing – rather weak in ENTPs. This function helps with storing information in an organized way for future use. That’s why ENTPs might appear inconsistent and unreliable.
How about INTJ?
INTJs are very logical and analytical. They’re not afraid of an intellectual challenge. In fact, that’s what pumps them up.
INTJs are just as rare as ENTPs. That means chances are even slimmer of knowing both of them in real life.
But let’s decipher which personality traits make INTJs what they are. To do that, let’s take a look at their cognitive functions in the order they’re used:
- Introverted intuition – INTJs see patterns in things, which helps them see the bigger picture. This allows them to stay focused on the goal, even if it’s a long-term one.
- Extroverted thinking – this function makes INTJs very objective and efficient. It allows them to apply logic and rational reasoning when making a decision.
- Introverted feeling – this is a relatively undeveloped function for an INTJ. But when it’s used, it helps INTJs act in accordance with their morals and values.
- Extroverted sensing – this function helps INTJs stay focused on physical presence. It’s undeveloped, which is why INTJs tend to get lost in their thoughts.
ENTP vs INTJ: What’s the Difference?
These two personality types, as you can notice, don’t share any cognitive functions. In fact, ENTP and INTJ are complete opposites in terms of them.
Despite that, there are times when they’ll act in a similar manner. But if you try analyzing their actions deeper, you’ll notice their reasonings are entirely different.
How they communicate
Both ENTP and INTJ tend to be precise and objective when communicating.
But between the two, one tends to take it too far sometimes. That’s INTJ.
INTJs always say what they mean, regardless of whether that will upset someone. For them, putting the truth across is more important than feelings. They don’t see the point in saying something they don’t mean for the sake of sparing others the harshness of the truth.
ENTPs, on the other hand, find it important to see different perspectives, so they’re no strangers to placing themselves in others’ shoes. This makes them more empathetic to others, so they’re more tactical when giving constructive criticism.
They won’t sugarcoat it, though. ENTPs will still serve you the facts, but with more consideration of how you might take it.
How they approach work
ENTP and INTJ – these two personalities have different working methods. Together, they create balance in the workplace.
ENTPs approach tasks at hand in a rather disorganized way. While that might be a very confusing method to others, it makes perfect sense for an ENTP. People with this personality type are most creative when improvising.
INTJs are able to see the bigger picture, which helps them turn their visions into reality. And their secret weapon to achieve that is – planning.
INTJs want to do things as rationally and efficiently as possible. That’s why they make strategies with measurable goals. And INTJs believe that the key to success is to stick with the plan.
This brings us to my next point.
How adaptable they are
ENTPs are always open to change. They don’t like when things get too boring, so pushing boundaries is something they’re always open to.
ENTPs aren’t afraid of the unknown – they always go with the flow.
That might mean ordering questionable dishes for dinner. Or, it might mean buying a plane ticket to Paris for a little one-day shopping trip. Tomorrow. Even though that might mean they’ll eat instant ramen for the rest of the month.
I’m pretty sure INTJs would be disgusted by such a thought.
INTJs are more of a planner type of people. They like to know how their life and activities are structured, and they can address their tasks in a specific order.
Last-minute changes are very stressful to INTJs. Let’s say you had a Friday night planned for hanging out with an INTJ, but something came up. I strongly suggest you tell them by Monday, at most.
They probably have their whole week planned out already. So you want to give them time to adjust their schedule in a timely manner.
Their motivation to learn
Both of these personality types enjoy learning new things. But their motivations are rather different.
INTJs are very pragmatic and efficient. So if they spend time expanding knowledge on a subject, it better be something that’s applicable in real life.
Let’s say an INTJ wants to get a bank loan. They will spend their time reading all they can on the subject. They might even take up a banking course just to learn how loans work.
Was INTJ not in need of a bank loan, they would probably never spend time doing such extensive research on the subject. Not because it’s not interesting – but because they could spend that time learning something that’s more applicable in real life.
ENTPs aren’t so deliberate about how they spend every second of their life. If they’re interested in how something works, they won’t mind spending half a day researching it. Even if it’s a seemingly pointless thing like why flamingos only eat with their heads upside down.
Just because knowledge about something might not have much practical usage in the real world, that doesn’t mean it’s not worth knowing.
What they focus on
INTJs are goal-oriented people. They have a plan for everything they do, and they’re very serious about sticking to it. And if they get stuck on task #7, for example, they won’t move from it until it’s 100% accomplished.
ENTPs, on the other hand, prefer more fluidity in their focus. That’s why they won’t mind simply skipping the aforementioned task and dealing with the rest first. Then, once they have more time to spare, they’ll get back to task #7 and see if they came up with an idea to solve it.
Logically speaking, we could argue that focusing on one thing at a time is more efficient, but that’s not how ENTPs work. The chaotic organization actually makes sense to them, and it’s the environment they work best in.
Similarities Between ENTP and INTJ
Since their cognitive functions are inverted, ENTPs and INTJs can come off as quite similar on certain occasions. In a way, that’s because they each behave like the other when under stress and pressure.
So, let’s see what those similar behaviors are.
The thinking process
Both ENTP and INTJ are deep thinkers. They’re intuitive, which allows them to recognize patterns and connections in things. This makes them able to understand more complex concepts in a rather rational way.
These two personality types enjoy learning new things and expanding their knowledge. They absorb information like a sponge, and with the help of their logic, that info helps them form opinions and beliefs.
Neither of the two will enjoy being micromanaged by their boss.
These two personality types like to have independence in the workplace. They’re both very motivated and goal-oriented, so they don’t need anyone directing their every move. They’re perfectly capable of achieving what’s required of them on their own.
In fact, both of them would be rather successful as managers themselves. Their strategic thinking and problem-solving skills really shine in such situations.
ENTPs and INTJs aren’t afraid of speaking their minds. So they’ll gladly indulge in a debate, which can show off their logic and critical thinking skills.
Even a conflict doesn’t really need to be a conflict for these two. It’s mental sparring – it allows them to compare perspectives and challenge others to do the same.
What’s also true for both of them is that they don’t typically engage on an emotional level when debating. Debate is just that – a clash of thoughts, so there’s really no need to feel offended.
Plus, given they focus on using rational arguments and facts, it’s very unlikely either of the two loses in a debate.
Still have questions about either of the two MBTI types? Here’s a quick FAQ with some of the questions that weren’t previously answered in the article.
What INTJ thinks of ENTP?
Which MBTI is closest to INTJ?
What MBTI is opposite of INTJ?
To Sum Things Up
ENTP and INTJ have completely opposite reactions in many situations.
While ENTPs love spontaneity and flexibility, INTJs strive for order and strategy. This is true for both their personal life and career.
At work, INTJs prefer having a plan to stick to. ENTPs, on the other hand, like having more options available at all times.
But the two of them can be rather similar at times.
They both have a thirst for knowledge and won’t fret about sharing it with the world. They also like a good debate, as it lets them showcase their great critical thinking skills.
As you can see, these two personality types can really complement each other.
Can’t tell the difference between INTJ and INTP? Here’s our article on different ways to tell them apart.