On June 24, 2005, I wrote — Mark of the INTJ Rational-Mastermind — and today, that article has over 440 comments:
My temperament type is INTJ or Rational-Mastermind and I’ve known that over many tests over the arc of my life and here is a fun link to a fancy online report on my personality type that makes it really easy and clear to understand how your type affects you and others around you.
Living as an INTJ can be challenging because so few people really understand how you think or where you’re coming from, and in a business setting, we INTJs really need to be careful because our comments are so often negatively misunderstood as we operationally make our way through the world.
INTJs are rarely free to share what we know because people don’t speak directly and bluntly in the USA. People soften, prevaricate, and allude when they speak to each other and that, unfortunately, leaves things open for interpretation and, perhaps, purposeful misdirection.
I find it helps the INTJ personality to have an “interpreter” available — either in person or offline — who can better parse the indirect meaning of what others are saying in consequential situations and to help “soften” how the INTJ chooses to respond. An interpreter can help save time and heartache and also assist the INTJ in achieving our communication mantra — “Be blunt and cruel, it saves time;” — but without offending anyone on the way.
The interpreter — a “feeler” or a “guardian” personality type works best — can suggest word replacements for the INTJ: “Yes” for “No” and “Of, course!” for “Never!” and to let us know “Speak Your Mind” really means, “Say Nothing!” In a pinch, another INTJ can have the necessary distance and scope to help an INTJ survive under a communication gun with an adversary personality.
The reverse translation also helps the INTJ: “If you wouldn’t mind” becomes “Do it now” and “We’ll see” becomes “No” while “What do you think?” is revealed to mean, “Tell me what I want to hear;” and suddenly the world is a cleaner and clearer place for the intransigent INTJ trapped in the business wilds.
INTJs do a lot of hiding and coping in the workplace, and that can be a painful experience, because our vision and our knowing of the future are rarely valued and often mocked. We take refuge in understanding we’ll eventually be proven right — even if that confession is never made by others in the public square.