Up to Feety's Place

Mastermind (INTJ) Temperament

Both the Keirsey Temperament Sorter and Keirsey Character Sorter evaluated me as having the Mastermind (INTJ) temperament. Please see the Keirsey site for the descriptions of all four of the Rational (NT), temperaments: Architects (INTP), Masterminds (INTJ), Inventors (ENTP), and Fieldmarshals (ENTJ) temperaments.

The original form of this portrait comprised three paragraphs, but I've broken it up further by adding my comments.

The Portrait of the Mastermind (iNTj)
Copyrighted © 1996 Prometheus Nemesis Book Company.
Of the four aspects of strategic analysis and definition it is the contingency planning or entailment organizing role that reaches the highest development in INTJs. Entailing or contingency planning is not an informative activity, rather it is a directive one in which the planner tells others what to do and in what order to do it. As the organizing capabilities the INTJs increase so does their inclination to take charge of whatever is going on.

The last part of this is eerily accurate. In the fairly recent past (the last year or so) my organizational skills have gotten some exercise, and I've come to realize that I could have more imapct on things if I act as a leader, rather than a follower. And futher, I actually want to try taking charge, which I haven't really wanted to do before.

It is in their abilities that INTJs differ from the other NTs, while in most of their attitudes they are just like the others. However there is one attitude that sets them apart from other NTs: they tend to be much more self-confident than the rest, having, for obscure reasons, developed a very strong will.

I've never considered myself to have an especially strong will, but I can be stubborn about things I think are important. (Which means that although "strong-willed" may be part of what I am, it's not a part of my self-perception, or how I identify myself.)

They are rather rare, comprising no more than, say, one percent of the population.

Wow... I wonder if I count as a member of an endangered species?

Being very judicious, decisions come naturally to them; indeed, they can hardly rest until they have things settled, decided, and set. They are the people who are able to formulate coherent and comprehensive contingency plans, hence contingency organizers or "entailers."

On the contrary, I can postpone things extraordinarily well. But then, I have a well-honed sense of apathy which allows me to ignore the unsettled until it becomes an immediate concern.

INTJs will adopt ideas only if they are useful, which is to say if they work efficiently toward accomplishing the INTJ's well-defined goals.

Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't understand why anyone would adopt an idea which wasn't useful.

Natural leaders, INTJs are not at all eager to take command of projects or groups, preferring to stay in the background until others demonstrate their inability to lead.

This is right on the mark, despite the apparent conflict with the above comment about the increasing inclination to take charge. I can only assume that increased organizational abilities (as mentioned above) tend to be more "extroverted" qualities, which pushes a Mastermind (INTJ) towards the Fieldmarshal (ENTJ) personality type.

Once in charge, however, INTJs are the supreme pragmatists, seeing reality as a crucible for refining their strategies for goal-directed action. In a sense, INTJs approach reality as they would a giant chess board, always seeking strategies that have a high payoff, and always devising contingency plans in case of error or adversity.

Like the comment about ideas, it seems to me that this is the obvious behavior. What's the point in leading if you're not going anywhere? And if you want to lead well, isn't reality a good measuring stick?

To the INTJ, organizational structure and operational procedures are never arbitrary, never set in concrete, but are quite malleable and can be changed, improved, streamlined. In their drive for efficient action, INTJs are the most open-minded of all the types. No idea is too far-fetched to be entertained-if it is useful. INTJs are natural brainstormers, always open to new concepts and, in fact, aggressively seeking them. They are also alert to the consequences of applying new ideas or positions. Theories which cannot be made to work are quickly discarded by the INTJs. On the other hand, INTJs can be quite ruthless in implementing effective ideas, seldom counting personal cost in terms of time and energy.
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