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Architect Personality Type (INTJ): Description & Characteristics

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What Is an Architect Personality?

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) system divides everyone into one of 16 personality types.

While these are most commonly known by their four-letter identification labels, each also has a more descriptive noun giving a general idea of what that personality is like.

Architects, otherwise known as INTJs, are intelligent, analytical and decisive. They are strategic thinkers and set themselves high standards.

This article details the key characteristics, strengths and weaknesses of the Architect personality type. It includes some scenarios to show how to get the best out of an Architect in different situations.

What Test Identifies the Architect Personality Type?

The Architect, or INTJ, is one of 16 distinct personalities as defined by the Myers-Briggs personality test. It falls within the ‘Analyst’ group.

The Architect personality is also referred to as the Intellectual or the Strategist.

The MBTI is a useful personality test for understanding a person's character as well as their strengths, weaknesses and motivations.

The MBTI is designed as a series of statements. The participant selects the extent of their agreement or disagreement towards them.

The results determine a person's attitude to various situations as well as their values.

The Architect is considered as one of the rarest personality types. It accounts for less than 2% of the population.

What Does INTJ Stand For?

The initial letters represent four core personality traits based on the work of the psychologist CG Jung.

  • I (Introverted) – INTJs prefer time alone over the company of others. Social situations can be draining.
  • N (Intuitive) – Intuitive people tend to look at the bigger picture without getting caught up in the details. They can process a lot of information almost unconsciously.
  • T (Thinking) – These people make decisions based on facts, not emotions. They follow their head over their heart. Decisions can be made quickly and decisively.
  • ** J (Judging)** – They are organized and carry out activities in a structured, methodical manner.

The 16 personalities identified by the MBTI are split into four categories:

  • Analysts
  • Diplomats
  • Sentinels
  • Explorers

The Architect is an Analyst type personality along with the Logician (INTP), Commander (ENTJ) and Debater (ENTP).

Key Characteristics of an Architect Personality

Observant

Architects are lovers of learning and will master any subject they focus on.

They are single-minded and focused. They set plans and projects in motion with little regard for others.

They are often avid readers and absorb new information easily. Architects question everything about the world around them.

Single-Minded

Analytical and determined, Architects set out to achieve their goals. Their strategic approach is possible due to their ability to see 10 steps ahead. This is why the Architect is often linked with the image of a chess player.

Architects are strategists. They plan things carefully and logically, and achieve what they set out to achieve.

Others are attracted to their confidence and self-assurance.

Logical

Problem-solving can be a very deliberate process. Architects place their emphasis on looking for patterns and determining the cause and effect of all possible actions.

INTJs’ decision-making is logical and they take a methodical approach. They choose options based on what makes sense rather than what feels right.

Architects are drawn to hobbies such as playing chess. Strategy games suit their analytic personality.

Reserved

They may appear aloof and disinterested in social interaction. This is because they consider small talk frustrating, preferring to get straight to the point.

As an introverted personality, they are energized by time spent alone. They are self-sufficient and happy to work independently.

They often appear quiet and reserved. They can find it difficult to express or communicate their emotions to others.

Although logical and critical, they may also have a sarcastic sense of humor. They tend to form relationships with those with similar values. Connections are often formed as a result of shared interests or activities.

Critical Thinkers

Rules will not be followed blindly, and will be broken if deemed necessary. Architects can come across as critical as they take a direct, no-nonsense approach to communication.

They will thrive in a structured, logical and organized environment. This allows them the freedom to think expansively and creatively within a solid framework.

What Jobs Are Architects Suited To?

Although INTJs aren't always literally architects, it is certainly a career they would be able to excel at.

Their superior ability to handle complex information and analyze facts makes careers in finance, research and the sciences particularly suitable.

Some popular options for Architects include:

Careers that involve a lot of social interaction with people, such as many customer-service jobs are less suitable for the Architect.

Famous INTJs

Once an INTJ has defined a goal, they will set out doggedly to achieve it.

Some INTJs who have gained fame from their success include:

  • Stephen Hawking, theoretical physicist
  • CS Lewis, writer and theologian
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger, actor and bodybuilder
  • Thomas Jefferson, former president
  • Andy Warhol, artist and director

Strengths and Weaknesses

INTJ Strengths

Confidence

Interestingly for an introvert personality type, INTJs have confidence in themselves that makes them very independent.

The interaction of their thinking and judging traits combine to create a strong self-belief.

They are more than happy to work alone on tasks. They are also capable of making decisions without consultation.

This could lead to problems if they are unwilling to collaborate to reach universal decisions. It could also lead to over-confidence or arrogance.

Architects rate their confidence highly, but not as highly as some others, the Commander personality type, for example.

The Commander (ENTJ) role embodies confidence and leadership qualities. They express the extraversion trait instead of the introversion of the Architect, but are otherwise similar.

Curiosity

Architects have a naturally inquisitive nature. They are fascinated with learning and making connections about the world around them.

They are open-minded and enjoy finding out about other perspectives.

Their theoretical learning style makes them ideal lifelong learners. They tend to absorb and assimilate new information more quickly than others.

They are keen to develop their understanding of subjects and enjoy opportunities to learn something new.

Architects often have high IQ scores. They are adept at analyzing patterns, abstract reasoning and understanding the bigger picture.

Their highly conceptual learning style is similar to the Mediator (INFP) personality. Both have a natural curiosity for alternative views and ways of comprehending the world.

Innovative

Architects are natural problem-solvers. Their ability to analyze things enables them to implement improvements and develop systems for the better.

Despite this, INTJs don't enjoy unpredictable situations. They prefer to work efficiently and process information fully before acting on it.

Their logical reasoning makes them particularly suited to situations that are structured and predictable.

Nevertheless, they are forward-thinking and can predict outcomes. They can assess options creatively and design strategies to improve systems.

Working towards improving standards is important for Architects. They design innovative systems that remove inconsistencies.

The INFJ (Counselor) personality is similar in that they envision a better future. They also take action to improve the world in line with their vision.

Ambition

INTJs are ambitious and set high standards for themselves.

They are motivated and driven to achieve their goals.

This doesn't just include goals for themselves – they are great encouragers of achievement in others.

Being ambitious for others means that they are supportive friends. They will hold others accountable for their actions, ensuring they meet their high expectations.

Their drive to achieve means the Architect is focused and determined. These are useful qualities in work and home life.

INTJ Weaknesses

Avoids Emotional Talk

INTJs may project an outward appearance of insensitivity.

This is because Architects avoid emotional talk. They prefer to stick to logical and factual information.

This can be a problem for people trying to get to know them.

Thinking personalities, such as the Architect and the Debater (ENTP) don't consider emotional points to be as valid as statements of fact.

They don't hold much value in expressing feelings. However, this can cloud their judgment and affect their decision-making process, especially when in social or people-focused settings.

However, it is a weakness that can be overcome with guidance and support.

Helping an INTJ become more self-aware will give them a better understanding of how they are perceived by others.

Judgmental

The Architect can be critical of others and judge them in relation to the high standards they hold for themselves.

They have complete belief in their view of situations. This can come across as a negative trait and can cause conflict with others.

Other people might perceive them as condescending. They might avoid the Architect, being made to feel less intelligent.

By judging other people, the Architect ignores other people's differences. This could lead to them being perceived as prejudiced.

Architects take a very different approach from the Campaigner (ENFP).

ENFPs are acutely aware of how they are perceived and will support others in expressing their ideas and opinions without judgment.

In the end, INTJs are open-minded, wide-reaching people, so a reminder to consider others can help them avoid being overly critical in different situations.

Arrogance

The Architect's overconfidence can lead to arrogance.

They hold great confidence in their own knowledge and understanding. They may tend towards an autocratic leadership style.

This can cause them to focus on trying to prove other people wrong.

Pointing out other people's errors can make them appear harsh and unforgiving. This can particularly flair up in performance reviews.

Their lack of empathy can lead them to seem selfish, which can cause problems in all types of relationships.

There is a big difference between confidence and arrogance. Reminding an INTJ of this could help them reflect on how they come across to others.

Other people may feel like their views are not respected as the Architect conveys an impression of always being right.

Developing communication skills can help overcome any negative consequences of this weakness.

Architect Personality Type (INTJ): Description and Characteristics
Architect Personality Type (INTJ): Description and Characteristics

Architect at Work vs Play

Architects may encounter challenges in work and at play.

However, these can be resolved by understanding how they interpret the world.

Architect at Work

Architects do well in structured work environments with logical rules where they can work independently and will avoid situations that involve lots of people or small talk.

At work, problems could be caused if an employer does not have an adequate understanding of the Architect personality type and what they need.

Here are two challenges that might arise at work and how best to respond to achieve a positive outcome.

1. At Networking Events

Architects prefer solitary work. The prospect of attending a networking event might feel unfamiliar or nerve-wracking.

As a result, they may feel out of their depth and misunderstand how to approach the event.

They may think their skills are not suitable for the task. Interacting with a large number of people and engaging with business small talk might be intimidating.

However, there are approaches to persuade them they are a suitable candidate to pursue the task.

An Architect focuses on the bigger picture, so it could be useful to discuss what the wide-reaching benefits are of attendance.

Highlight the long-term goals of the company and how their efforts at the event will impact on the business as a whole.

An understanding of their part will enable them to see the value in attending.

Highlight their abilities of information-gathering and research. This can encourage their confidence in achieving the company goals.

Architects themselves could try and reframe the event in terms of a strategy. Consider the impact that networking can have on the organization.

This can help minimize their negative thoughts towards group interaction. Making connections with other organizations is necessary for growth and expansion.

2. In Staff Meetings

Staff meetings are an inevitable part of work and may cause frustration for an Architect.

Often used as an opportunity for staff to air their opinions, Architects can perceive them as unstructured and unnecessary.

They may feel that it is not worthwhile for them and refuse to attend.

In these situations it is important to appeal to the Architect's logical nature.

Set a strict agenda and monitor the meeting throughout to ensure that contributions by staff are related specifically to the agenda item being discussed.

When conducting a meeting with an Architect, make sure all information is delivered in a logical and direct manner.

Architects themselves should try to broaden their worldview and understand that different personality types welcome the opportunity to express their feelings.

They should develop an awareness that other people gain value from different situations. This will help develop a perception of why meetings are worthwhile.

Architect at Play

Architects are considered intellectuals. They value facts and logic above emotion.

This can make forming and sustaining relationships particularly difficult.

Here are two challenges that an Architect might face. One covers a friendship situation and the other a romantic situation.

1. When Meeting New People

When encountering new people for the first time, an Architect personality will confidently assert their views and disregard small talk. This can mean making new friends is particularly challenging.

Others are drawn to their personality as they are single-minded and confident.

However, they can also be blunt and direct. This critical approach might not be welcomed by those who don’t know them.

Architects do not see any value in small talk. Therefore, it is worth reminding them that other personality types use this as a way to get to know people.

Architects themselves need to be aware of how their direct approach might be interpreted by others.

They can learn to patiently allow others the chance to express themselves. This will be appreciated and it helps build connections.

It can be difficult for Architects to form relationships. They make strong bonds with a few select people. They will invest time and energy into making those relationships successful.

2. Misunderstanding a Partner

Misunderstandings can occur in a romantic relationship with an Architect.

Their difficulty in understanding and expressing their emotions can cause conflict with a partner.

Architects often have a low EQ (emotional intelligence) so will need guidance and support on understanding the emotions of their partner.

This is particularly the case if a partner is of a less logical and more feelings-based personality type.

In a romantic relationship, it is important to understand another person's views. If there is a lack of emotional talk about feelings, the partner of an Architect could struggle.

The benefits and long-term consequences of open emotional expression should be shared.

This will enable the Architect to understand the necessity of resolving misunderstandings before they escalate into conflict.

Architects themselves need to be aware of the needs of their partner. Developing listening skills and allowing time for emotional expression should be focused on.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Architect is one of the more intelligent groups of personalities. They think in analytical and abstract terms, and they are often several steps ahead of everyone else.

Architects fall into two categories: INTJ-A and INTJ-T.

The difference is how they express their ideas. The assertive Architect – INTJ-A – is more confident with their expressions whilst the turbulent Architect – INTJ-T – is more open and influenced by the perceptions of other people.

The Architect is one of the rarest personality types. They make up around 2% of the total population and they are quite contentious individuals.

Assertive Architects are more difficult to manage because they are so headstrong in their ideas. The likes of Nietzsche and Elon Musk fall into the assertive Architect category.

INFJ is the rarest personality type, and they only make up around 1% to 2% of the population. They are rare because of their emotional dependence and depth of emotional understanding.

INTJs are so rare because of their conflicting personality traits. On the one hand, they can map out the vision of a project several steps ahead of others, yet they are emotionally closed off. Their logical skills make them hard to talk to at times, and they can very impolite.

Changing the opinion of someone who has the personality type INTJ-A is very unlikely. They are willing to forego relationships and sometimes even their health in the pursuit of their vision.

Final Thoughts

Architects are strong personalities. Their confidence and independence can be a force to be reckoned with.

Architects themselves may need to work hard to understand how their personality is perceived by others.

In work situations, learning about team dynamics is useful when working with a range of people.

Dealing with these direct and forceful characters can be tricky, but taking the time to develop a deeper understanding of their character is worth the investment.

They are honest and supportive personalities and they encourage others to reach for their dreams.


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