What character traits characterize the ESTJ personality?

Reading time 9 minutes
What character traits characterize the ESTJ personality?

The analysis of your own personality is not only exciting, but also contributes fundamentally to your inner growth. Every person is unique. Nevertheless, there are certain behavioral patterns that can be observed again and again in different people. There are various concepts to divide people into personality types. One of them is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator differentiates between 16 different personality typeswhich also includes the ESTJ. The ESTJ is one of the most common characters. About 11 % of the total population can be classified as ESTJ personality. In the following, we will take a closer look at the characteristics of this widespread personality type.

What does the abbreviation ESTJ stand for?

The abbreviation ESTJ stands for the following characteristics:

  • E: Extraverts (Extroversion)
  • S: Sensors (Receiver)
  • T: Thinkers
  • J: Judgers

Let's look at the character traits detail:


Extroverted personalities need other people around them to feel happy and satisfied. They are expressive and enthusiastic. Extroverts have no difficulty in quickly making friends in a (new) group. It is not uncommon for them to become the centre of attention within their circle of friends and colleagues within a very short time.


Sensitives don't like to speculate. If they have a make a decision they rely exclusively on provable and measurable facts. Sensitives live in the present. They ponder neither reflect on the past nor fear the future.


As the name suggests, thinkers are absolute head people. Instead of listening to their heart, they make decisions exclusively with the help of their razor-sharp minds. They have the talent to grasp facts quickly and analyze them precisely.


Appraisers lead an orderly daily life. Without structure, they feel lost. Therefore, they are meticulous about maintaining control in all areas of their lives. Like Thinkers, Evaluators base their decisions exclusively on provable facts.

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The ESTJ personality at a glance

ESTJ people are a prime example of the good citizen. They place great value on order, traditions, and orderly hierarchical relationships. ESTJs have a precise idea of what is wrong and right. ESTJ personalities have little sympathy for people who hold different moral views. Because of their characteristics, ESTJ people are also known as executives.

For the ESTJ, respect, honesty and social commitment represent the most important values. When problems arise, people of this personality type readily step forward to guide and inspire others. Despite their social conformity - or perhaps because of it - ESTJs possess excellent leadership skills. Their greatest goal is to unite the community - professionally and personally.

ESTJs do not tolerate laziness and lying. They believe that you have to earn your authority with honest work. According to this guiding principle, the ESTJ shapes his life. ESTJs therefore often hold high office in politics and business. Privately, they are not infrequently active as community organizers. They are committed to bringing social concerns closer to the people.

Strengths of the ESTJ personality

ESTJ personalities possess the following strengths:


The ESTJ does not give up when things get difficult. On the contrary, people of this personality type see it as their duty to finish a task once it has been started. The prerequisite for this, however, is that they consider the task at hand to be morally right. With his own determination, the ESTJ finds a practical solution even to difficult problems.


ESTJ people are convinced of their values and defend them with fervor. They do not consider alternatives just because they might be easier to implement. ESTJs know how to convince other people of their high moral principles as well. They see challenges as a welcome opportunity to demonstrate their skills and talents.


ESTJ personalities rely exclusively on provable facts. They speak only proven facts rather than speculate about contingencies. ESTJs prefer clear statements that those around them can relate to. This straightforwardness makes them very popular among friends and colleagues.

Loyalty, patience and reliability

ESTJ people always keep their promises. If an ESTJ person has promised to do something, they can be trusted without a doubt to get it done. Furthermore, ESTJs are loyal and faithful contemporaries, which makes them valuable members of the community. Even if a goal cannot yet be achieved immediately, they never lose patience.


For ESTJs, life must be clearly predictable and predictable. For this reason, they do not like any kind of disorder. Their workplace and home are always meticulously tidy, and their daily routine is structured down to the smallest detail. In this way, ESTJs achieve the stability and security they need to be productive and succeed. Other people also benefit from the love of order.

Organizational talent

Their love of truth and clear structure makes ESTJ personalities excellent leaders. On the job, as a supervisor, they can coordinate the concerns of a large team without ever losing sight of the big picture. They distribute all pending tasks fairly and objectively. In this way, they achieve perfect work results.

clear structure ESTJ

Weaknesses of the ESTJ personality

ESTJ personalities struggle with the following weaknesses:

Lack of flexibility and stubbornness

ESTJ people's entrenched beliefs prevent them from trying new solutions that might work better. In this way, they block valuable opportunities for growth. Until a fact is clearly proven, ESTJs consider it merely an opinion. They are so stubborn about breaking new ground that any attempt at persuasion is futile.

Conservative behaviour

The rigid moral concepts prevent ESTJ people from thinking outside the box. When confronted with new ideas, ESTJs first feel insecure and uncomfortable. For these types, it feels as if their entire concept of life is being questioned.

Impaired judgement

ESTJs divide the world into black and white. In their opinion, nothing exists in between. For them, there is always only one way to solve a problem, which is basically based on their moral convictions. This behavior can sometimes seem almost obsessive and limits the neutral view that would be necessary to make a fair judgment.

Too much focus on social status

ESTJ personalities make their personal happiness strongly dependent on the opinion of their environment. The desire to be integrated into the community is overpowering. However, ESTJs often forget to consider their own needs. They prefer to please everyone else.

Difficulties to relax

ESTJ personalities have trouble relaxing. They work so doggedly for their social approval that the Joie de vivre and looseness fall by the wayside. People of this personality type attach great importance to always appear competent. In the long run, this can be quite exhausting.

Emotional coldness

Due to their strong fixation on clear facts, ESTJs have difficulty interpreting and expressing their own emotions. They simply do not attach any importance to them, but sooner or later this takes its revenge: at worst in the form of depression. They also often bring little to other people empathy and understanding as far as emotional issues are concerned.

Career of the ESTJ personality

The career paths of ESTJ personalities are often as straightforward and predictable as the people themselves. Although they have a wide range of options open to them, ESTJs almost always choose professions in which they can exercise their organizational talents. It usually doesn't take long for them to work their way up to senior positions. This is where their reliability and sense of duty come in handy.

Their strong sense of loyalty means that ESTJ people usually remain loyal to their employer for many years or even decades. They really identify with their profession. ESTJs often work in socially significant institutions such as the military, hospitals or law firms. Many ESTJs can also be found in the management of various fields.

If something displeases them, ESTJ people take stern action. They do not tolerate laziness or dishonesty. If a colleague or employee violates these values, the ESTJ reprimands the person sharply. As long as everyone follows the rules, a peaceful working environment is guaranteed.

How does the ESTJ behave as an employee, colleague and supervisor?

ESTJ people provide order and structure. Here it is completely independent in which professional position they are. They can adapt in any area, which means they are both loyal employees and leadership competent bosses. However, they expect all other employees to perform their tasks with the same high sense of responsibility.

As employees, ESTJs adhere precisely to the rules imposed on them by their supervisor. They do not develop new ideas on their own, but always follow proven methods. The prerequisite for this, however, is that they consider their superior to be morally irreproachable. If this is not the case, ESTJ people express their displeasure clearly and factually.

ESTJ personalities are extremely popular among colleagues. They socialize quickly and are on a first-name basis with everyone. However, ESTJs have difficulty with anyone who deviates from their worldview. Colleagues who have different ideas or look different are quickly judged. This creates a gap in the circle of colleagues that is difficult to close.

Relationships of the ESTJ personality

ESTJ people are looking for a stable and long-term partnership. All statements they make to their partner are serious and binding. The ESTJ would never promise something that he is not able to keep. What an important component honesty represents in the interpersonal sphere, proves following research.

The ESTJ is immensely committed to ensuring a working partnership. Mood swings and changing desires will not happen with him. ESTJ people know exactly what they expect from a romantic relationship. They stand by their partner faithfully and loyally in every situation. Difficulties are communicated openly and honestly.

As we have already discussed in detail, traditions play a crucial role in the life of the ESTJ. This also includes the area of love. Consequently, it is not surprising that ESTJ people strive for a classic family idyll with marriage, a family home and two children. Likewise, they find it difficult to break away from traditional role models.

The emotional component: a challenge for ESTJ people

When it comes to intimacy, ESTJ people also prefer to keep it classic. They are by no means the type to get involved in sexual adventures and experiments. Those who want stability in their love life will be very happy with an ESTJ partner. On the other hand, those who are looking for daring adventure should look for someone else.

A far greater hurdle than intimate closeness is emotional closeness. Emotions are something abstract, which is neither tangible nor measurable. The lack of ability to respond compassionately to the emotional needs of their partner sometimes makes ESTJ people seem cold. Grand declarations of love and romantic gestures are not in their nature.

Provided that the ESTJ finds other ways to express his love and affection, the latter is not a big problem. However, the partner must learn to interpret the expressions of affection correctly. This is by no means to say that the ESTJ should not try to be more tactful. Ideally, both partners meet somewhere in the middle.

Curiosities about the ESTJ

Even though the ESTJ is a common personality type, the following curiosities are probably new to you:

  • Of all personality types, ESTJs have the highest Satisfaction in marriage and in professional life.
  • ESTJ personalities are at the lowest risk of contemplating or carrying out suicidal acts.
  • ESTJs rarely drop out of school and are among the top four personality types with the highest educational attainment.
  • An above-average number of ESTJ personalities are found among bankers, financial managers and business owners.
  • Of all the personality types, ESTJs have the best resources for dealing with stress.

Source: MBTI Manual: A Guide to the Development and Use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, 3rd Edition by Isabell Briggs Myers.

Curiosities about the ESTJ

Famous ESTJ people

The following celebrities match the ESTJ personality type:

  • Vince Lombardi
  • Sandra Day O'Connor
  • Mike Wallace
  • Judge Judy Sheindlin
  • George Washington
  • Dr. Laura Schlessinger
  • Colin Powell
  • John D. Rockefeller
  • Sonia Sotomayor
  • Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Ella Baker
  • Laura Linnay
  • Frank Sinatra
  • James Monroe

Famous ESTJ people from film and television:

  • Ana Lucia Corez (Lost)
  • Claire Dunphy (Modern Family)
  • Boromir (The Lord of the Rings)
  • Dwight Schrute (The Office).
  • Robb Stark (Game of Thrones)
  • Porthos (The Three Musketeers)
  • Violet Crawley (Downtown Abbey)
  • Lisa Cuddy (House M.D.)

Want to find out more about your personality?

As mentioned at the beginning, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is only one of several options for personality analysis. Much easier to conduct and interpret is the scientifically based DISG personality test, which distinguishes between four different communication types.

That the DISC test is preferably used in large companies is by no means a coincidence. Where many people work together, a goal-oriented exchange is essential. In professional life in particular, successful communication is the key to success, which the following scholarly article clearly expressed.

Do you wish your improve your communication skills and your strengths fully exploit your potential? Then you should use the DISG test today to find out which of the four communication types you belong to. With us you can take the DISC personality test completely free of charge and without obligation now.

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Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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