Personality types for librarians let s get in your head
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Personality Types for Librarians: Let’s Get In Your Head…. Dan Chaney Humanities & Social Sciences Inquisitor General. Understanding Personalities . Allow us to: Understand ourselves and our behaviors Appreciate others Approaching problems in different ways can be healthy and productive.

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Personality types for librarians let s get in your head

Personality Types for Librarians: Let’s Get In Your Head…

Dan Chaney

Humanities & Social Sciences

Inquisitor General


Understanding personalities

Understanding Personalities

Allow us to:

  • Understand ourselves and our behaviors

  • Appreciate others

  • Approaching problems in different ways can be healthy and productive.


Knowing our personality

Knowing Our Personality

Can help us to:

  • Communicate more effectively

  • Assist in professional development

  • Improve teamwork

  • Understand and adapt to differences in management style

  • Understand contributions to the library

  • Conflict resolution


The myers briggs type indicator mbti

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)

  • Developed by an American mother and daughter team, Katharine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers.

  • Based on the work of Carl Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist who had studied people’s behavior for many years.

  • The MBTI provides a useful measure of personality by looking at eight personality preferences that all people use at different times.

  • These eight preferences are organized into four bi-polar scales.

  • When you take the MBTI, the four preferences that you identify as most like you (one from each scale) are combined into what is called a type.


Understanding the mbti

Understanding the MBTI

  • Describes rather than proscribes; it feeds back to you in organized form the preferences you indicated when answering the questions.

  • Describes preferences, not skills or abilities.

  • Says that all preferences are equally important.

  • Well documented and researched with hundreds of studies over a forty-year period.


The four dimensions measured by the mbti

The Four Dimensions Measured by the MBTI

ScaleRefers toKey Activity

Extraversion – Introversion How we interactEnergizing

with the world & where

we direct our energy

Sensing – INtuitionThe kind of Attending

information we

naturally notice

Thinking – Feeling How we makeDeciding

decisions

Judging – Perceiving Spontaneous vs.Living

structured life style


Energizing dimension characteristics

Energizing Dimension Characteristics

Extraversion – Preference for drawing energy from the outside world of people, activities or things. They prefer interaction with others and are action oriented. Extraverts are interactors and “on-the-fly” thinkers. For the extrovert, there is no impression without expression.

Introversion – Preference for drawing energy from one’s internal world of ideas, emotions and impressions. Can be sociable but need away time to recharge their batteries. Introverts want to understand the world. They tend to be concentrators and reflective thinkers. For the introvert, there is no impression without reflection.

A majority (56-58%) of typical undergraduate students are extraverts.

Meanwhile, a majority (~55%) of university faculty are introverts.


Attending dimension characteristics

Attending Dimension Characteristics

Sensing – Preference for taking information through the five senses and noticing what is actual. Detail oriented, they want facts and trust them. Example: Joe Friday (Dragnet) only wanted “just the facts.”

Intuition – Preference for taking in information through a “sixth sense” and noticing what it might be. Tend to seek out patterns and relationships in the facts they have gathered. Trust their “hunches” and their intuition and look for the big picture. Example: Albert Einstein could see patterns where others only saw randomness.

A majority (56%- 75%) of undergraduates are sensors. (Side note: 83% of national merit scholarship finalists and 92% of Rhodes Scholars are intuitives.)

The majority (64%) of faculty are intuitives.


Deciding dimension characteristics

Deciding Dimension Characteristics

Thinking – Preference for organizing and structuring information to decide in a logical, objective way. Thinkers value fairness, and nothing is more fair than focusing on a situation’s logic and placing great weight on objective criteria in making a decision. Example: Mr. Spock had a distinct preference for thinking.

Feeling – Preference for organizing and structuring information to decide in a personal, value-oriented way. Feelers value harmony. They focus on human values and needs as they make decisions. Tend to be good at persuasion and facilitating differences among group members. Ex. Dr. McCoy (Star Trek) demonstrated a preference for feeling.

Unlike the other scales, this one breaks along gender lines:

  • Among undergraduates: 64% of men have a preference for thinking, while only about 34% of women have a preference for thinking. (That sounds worse than I mean it….) Ergo, 36% of men are feelers, while 66% of women are feelers.

  • A majority (54%) of faculty have a preference for thinking.


Living dimension characteristics

Living Dimension Characteristics

Judging – Preference for living a planned and organized life. Tend to be decisive, planned, and self-regimented. They focus on completing the task, only want to know the essentials, and take action quickly (perhaps too quickly.) They plan their work and work their plan. Deadlines are sacred. Their motto is “Just do it!”

Perceiving – Preference for living a spontaneous and flexible life. Tend to be curious, adaptable, and highly spontaneous. They start many tasks, want to know everything about each task, and often find it difficult to complete a task. For them, deadlines are just ballpark dates. Their motto is “On the other hand…”

A majority (46%-60%) of students are judgers. Interestingly, almost 64% of all Rhodes Scholars are perceivers.

The majority (65%) of faculty also have a preference for judging.


Extraverts at work

Extraverts at Work

Their motto is “Ready, Fire!, Aim”

Like variety and action

Often impatient with long, slow jobs

Are interested in the activities of their work and how other people do it

Often act quickly, sometimes without thinking

When working on a task, find phone calls a welcome diversion

Develop ideas by discussion

Like having people around

Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Introverts at work

Introverts at Work

  • Their motto is “Ready, Aim, Aim, Aim.....still aiming”

  • Like quiet for concentration

  • Tend to like working on one project for a long time without interruption

  • Are interested in the facts/ideas behind their work

  • Like to think a lot before they act, sometimes without acting

  • When concentrating on a task, find phone calls intrusive

  • Develop ideas by reflection

  • Like working alone

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Sensors at work

Sensors at Work

  • Like using experience and standard ways to solve problems

  • Enjoy applying what they have already learned

  • May distrust and ignore their inspirations

  • Seldom make errors of fact

  • Like to do things with a practical bent

  • Like to present the details of their work first

  • Prefer continuation of what is, with fine tuning

  • Usually proceed step-by-step

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Intuitives at work

Intuitives at Work

  • Like solving new complex problems

  • Enjoy learning a new skill more than using it

  • May follow their inspirations, good or bad

  • May make errors of fact

  • Like to do things with an innovative bent

  • Like to present an overview of their work first

  • Prefer change, sometimes radical, to continuation of what is

  • Usually proceed in burst of energy

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Thinkers at work

Thinkers at Work

  • Use logical analysis to reach conclusions

  • Can work without harmony

  • May hurt people’s feeling without knowing it

  • Tend to decide impersonally, sometimes paying insufficient attention to people’s wishes

  • Tend to be firm-minded and can give criticism when appropriate

  • Look at principles involved in the situation

  • Feel rewarded when job is well done

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Feelers at work

Feelers at Work

  • Use values to reach conclusions

  • Work best in harmony with others

  • Enjoy pleasing people, even in unimportant things

  • Often let decisions be influenced by their own and other people’s likes and dislikes

  • Tend to by sympathetic and dislike, even avoid, telling people unpleasant things

  • Look at the underlying values in the situation

  • Feel rewarded when people’s needs are met

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Judgers at work

Judgers at Work

  • Work best when they can plan their work and follow their plan

  • Like to get things settled and finished

  • May not notice new things that need to be done

  • Tend to be satisfied once they reach a decision on a thing, situation, or person

  • Reach closure by deciding quickly

  • Seek structure and schedules

  • Use lists to prompt action on specific tasks

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Perceivers at work

Perceivers at Work

  • Enjoy flexibility in their work

  • Like to leave things open ended for last-minute changes

  • May postpone unpleasant tasks that need to be done

  • Tend to be curious and welcome a new light on a thing, situation, or person

  • Postpone decisions while searching for options

  • Adapt well to changing situations and feel restricted without change

  • Use lists to remind them of all the things they have to do someday

    Adapted from Introduction to Type by Isabel Briggs Myers, Consulting Psychologists Press, Inc., 1987.


Communicating with extraverts

Communicating With Extraverts

  • Communicate energy and enthusiasm

  • Respond quickly without long pauses to think

  • Focus of talk is on people and things in the external environment

  • Need to moderate expression (kept quiet)

  • Seek opportunities to communicate in groups

  • Prefer face-to-face over written communication

  • In meetings, like talking out loud before coming to conclusions

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with introverts

Communicating With Introverts

  • Keep energy and enthusiasm inside

  • Like to think before responding

  • Focus is on internal ideas and thoughts

  • Need to be drawn out

  • Seek opportunities to communicate one-to-one

  • Prefer written over face-to-face communication

  • In meetings, verbalize already well thought out conclusions

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with sensors

Communicating With Sensors

  • Like evidence (facts, details, and examples) presented first

  • Want practical and realistic applications shown

  • Rely on direct experience to provide anecdotes

  • Use an orderly step-by-step approach in presentations

  • Like suggestions to be straightforward and feasible

  • Refer to a specific example

  • In meetings, are inclined to follow the agenda

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with intuitives

Communicating With Intuitives

  • Like global schemes, with broad issues presented first

  • Want possible future challenges discussed

  • Rely on insights and imagination to provoke discussion

  • Use a round-about approach in presentations

  • Like suggestions to be novel and unusual

  • Refer to a general concept

  • In meetings, are inclined to use the agenda as a starting point

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with thinkers

Communicating With Thinkers

  • Prefer to be brief and concise

  • Want the pros and cons of each alternative to be listed

  • Can be intellectually critical and objective

  • Convinced by cool, impersonal reasoning

  • Present goals and objectives first

  • Consider emotions and feelings as data to weigh

  • In meetings, seek involvement with tasks

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with feelers

Communicating With Feelers

  • Prefer to be sociable and friendly

  • Want to know why an alternative is valuable and how it affects people

  • Can be impersonally appreciative

  • Convinced by personal information, enthusiastically delivered

  • Present points of agreement first

  • Consider logic and objectivity as data to weigh

  • In meetings, seek involvement with people

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with judgers

Communicating With Judgers

  • Want to discuss schedules and timetables with tight deadlines

  • Dislike surprises and want advance warning

  • Expect others to follow through, and count on it

  • State their positions and decisions clearly

  • Communicate results and achievement

  • Talk of purpose and direction

  • In meetings, focus on the task to be done

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Communicating with perceivers

Communicating With Perceivers

  • Willing to discuss the schedule but are uncomfortable with tight deadlines

  • Enjoy surprises and like adapting to last-minute changes

  • Expect others to adapt to situational requirements

  • Present their views as tentative and modifiable

  • Communicate options and opportunities

  • Talk of autonomy and flexibility

  • In meetings, focus on the process to be appreciated

    Adapted from Talking in Type by Jean Kummerow, Center for Applications of Psychological Type, 1985.


Preference order for each type

Preference Order For Each Type

  • Your “type” is determined by the four preferences that you voted for when answering the questions.

  • Each of the eight preferences can be represented by a letter (E or I, S or N, T or F, J or P) a four-letter code can be used as shorthand for indicating type.

  • For example, ESTJ indicates a person who is energized by the external world (E), whose preferred way of attending to incoming information is sensing (S), whose way of deciding is thinking (T), and who adopts a judging (J) style of living.


Dominant function

Dominant Function

  • The middle two preferences (SN and TF) are called functions in MBTI language.

  • For each type, one of these four functions takes the lead, or is most preferred – this is called the dominant function.

  • Analogy: no organization can function well without a sense of direction and purpose. The same is true for personality: no person can be effective or consistent without one of the functions taking the lead.

  • People use their dominant function most in their favorite world. For example, if you are more energized by the external world (Extraversion), then that is where you use your dominant function. If you are more energized by the internal world (Introversion), then you use your dominant inside.

  • Extraverts use their dominant in the extraverted world, and Introverts use their dominant in their introverted world.


Auxiliary function

Auxiliary Function

  • The other function in the code type (the other two letter combinations) is called the auxiliary function because it helps out and supports the dominant function.

  • Analogy: all organizations need at least two things to survive and be effective: good information, and someone to make decisions about that information. The same is true of personality. That is why if the dominant function is an attending function (S or N) then the auxiliary, or secondary function, will be one of the deciding functions (T or F) and vice versa.

  • Besides balancing attending and deciding, the auxiliary function helps to provide balance to the personality in another way, because dominant and auxiliary functions are used in opposite worlds. That us, if the dominant is extraverted, the auxiliary will be introverted. If the dominant is introverted, the auxiliary will be extraverted.

  • Example: leadership in organizations. Some leaders focus primarily on the outer world; they concentrate on those people or things in the environment that might affect the organization. This kind of leader needs people to help maintain the internal functioning of the organization. Other leaders prefer to direct their energies primarily to the internal organization and delegate the external monitoring to others.


Note for introverts

Note for Introverts

Remember, Introverts are more likely to show their #2 (auxiliary) preference to others because their #1 preference is used mainly inside, in their favored introverted world.


Tertiary and inferior functions

Tertiary and Inferior Functions

  • Even though they do not show up in the type code, everyone also uses the other two functions at times. The third, or tertiary function, is the one opposite the auxiliary on the preference scale.

  • The fourth, or inferior function, is the one opposite the dominant on the preference scale. The inferior is most likely to show itself when people are under stress, ill, or otherwise not acting like themselves.


Example esfj

Example: ESFJ

This person’s dominant function is Feeling. Because they are an extravert, Feeling is used primarily in dealing with the outer world, so this person’s strength is in deciding about things in the outer world using person-centered values. This person’s auxiliary function is Sensing, which is focused primarily on the inner world. The auxiliary provides facts to help the person make decisions. The tertiary function is Intuition. The inferior function is Thinking, which means that this person might have difficulty bringing objectivity and logic to bear on decisions, preferring instead the subjective values of their dominant Feeling.

The order of Preferences for ESFJ:

  • Dominant = 1. Feeling

  • Auxilary =2. Sensing

  • Tertiary=3. Intuition

  • Inferior=4. Thinking

    Note: See the Supplemental Handout for your particular order of preference.


Dominant functions possible strengths

Dominant Functions: Possible Strengths

When Sensing is #1 (Dominant), as in ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTP, and ESFP, you are likely to:

  • Recognize the pertinent facts

  • Apply experience to problems

  • Notice what needs attention

  • Keep track of essentials

  • Handle problems with realism

    When Intuition is #1 (Dominant), as in INTJ, INFJ, ENTP, and ENFP, you are likely to:

  • Recognize new possibilities

  • Supply ingenuity to problems

  • See how to prepare for the future

  • Watch for new essentials

  • Tackle new problems with zest (note: not the soap)

    Remember, those with a preference for Extraversion (E) often show these strengths to others, while those with a preference for Introversion (I) often use these strengths inside themselves.


Dominant functions possible strengths1

Dominant Functions: Possible Strengths

When Thinking is #1 (Dominant), as in ISTP, INTP, ESTJ, and ENTJ, you are likely to:

  • Be good at analysis

  • Find flaws in advance

  • Hold consistently to a policy

  • Weigh “the law and the evidence”

  • Stand firm against opposition

    When Feeling is #1 (Dominant), as in ISFP, INFP, ESFJ, and ENFJ, you are likely to:

  • Be good at empathizing

  • Forecast how others will feel

  • Allow for extenuating circumstances

  • Be aware of values

  • Appreciate each person’s contributions


Inferior function possible consequences

Inferior Function: Possible Consequences

The inferior function shows itself typically in this form when the person is under stress, is ill, or is fatigued. These are only a few of the more common forms of the inferior function.

When Sensing is #1 (Dominant) and Intuition is #4 (Inferior), as in ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTP, and ESFP, someone might:

  • See the future in negative terms; be unduly pessimistic

  • Get stuck and not see possible ways out; get caught in a rut

    When Intuition is #1 (Dominant) and Sensing is #4 (Inferior), as in INTJ, INFJ, ENTP, and ENFP, someone might:

  • Get obsessed with unimportant details; be preoccupied with irrelevant facts

  • Overindulge in secondary pursuits; eat, drink, or exercise too much.


Inferior function possible consequences1

Inferior Function: Possible Consequences

When Thinking is #1 (Dominant) and Feeling is #4 (Inferior), as in ISTP, INTP, ESTJ, and ENTJ, someone might:

  • Have uncontrolled emotional outbursts; show anger or other emotions unexpectedly

  • Be hyper-sensitive; take criticism very personally

    When Feeling is #1 (Dominant) and Thinking is #4 (Inferior), as in ISFP, INFP, ESFJ, and ENFJ, someone might:

  • He hyper-critical; find fault with most everything

  • Be overly domineering; take charge without listening to others


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