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INFJ Careers

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The INFJ personality type is someone with Introverted, Intuition, Feeling, and Judging personality traits. These people are compassionate and altruistic. They are thoughtful with high levels of integrity.

INFJs have a strong sense of purpose. They care deeply about making a difference in the world. They are extremely conscientious and won't stop until they've done what they know is right. Their moral code guides their actions. 

People with the INFJ personality type are intensely principled. Their deep-seated personal values act as a compass, steering them through life.  INFJs are not motivated by power or success. They value meaningful work and deep connections with others.

The INFJ personality type is fairly common among the 16 personality types identified by Katharine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers. 5.3%  of the population are INFJs.

Illustration of a man who is dedicated to principles and values

The INFJ at work

INFJs advocate for projects that improve the greater good. Their vision for a better, happier, future influences their approach to work. INFJs use their creativity and insight to search for novel solutions to challenging problems.  

People with the INFJ personality type are excellent communicators. They are especially eloquent when campaigning for things they feel passionate about. INFJs don't have a manipulative bone in their body. But, they can often persuade people to follow their cause through their articulate speeches and the courage of their convictions.

INFJs are highly intuitive. This personality trait makes them incredibly perceptive about what they are experiencing in the world around them. They can often spot conflict brewing before anyone else and use their skills to smooth the waters. This is incredibly satisfying to INFJs. It allows them to make a positive contribution at a personal level.

INFJs also find their intuition helps them identify patterns that others may not notice. INFJs aren't afraid to tackle complex problems - whether process or person-driven. Solving problems provides an outlet for their considerable creativity. Often their solutions are novel and visionary. 

That doesn't mean they aren't practical, though. It would seem pointless to an INFJ to propose an answer that couldn't result in a tangible positive outcome. INFJs are extremely determined and will drive tasks through to the very end.

People with the INFJ personality type care deeply about others. They value genuine and productive relationships with their colleagues. Fairness and equality are important to INFJs. They work hard to create a harmonious work environment. If colleagues are struggling, INFJs will try and shoulder their burden. This means INFJs need to ensure they also take enough time to tend to their own well-being and resilience.

INFJs, like many people with the Introverted trait, can find socializing and small talk challenging. INFJs appreciate that YouTube funnies improve human connection. But, they aren't keen on the superficial nature of the conversation. They want to place their effort where it has the greatest impact. Purposeless meetings and workplace gossip feel like meaningless distractions to INFJs.

Like all of us, INFJ personality types have intrinsic traits that influence their motivation for working in a certain way and within specific work environments. 

At F4S, we've identified 48 different traits that can influence your motivation and energy levels. You'll naturally gravitate to some and reject others. Understanding your internal preferences can help you choose job roles, cultures, and workplace environments that will enable you to thrive. 

Despite this knowledge, we sometimes find ourselves having to work in a way that doesn't exactly match our needs. In this case, one-on-one coaching and personal development programs can help you build the skills and resilience you need to succeed.

Our nine-week development program, 'Vital Wellbeing', can help INFJs develop skills to increase their stress resilience. The program will help INFJs carve out time to focus on their own needs and well-being without feeling they are compromising their support of others.

Working with an INFJ

INFJs are compassionate and caring colleagues. They value authentic professional relationships. INFJs don't view themselves as superior to anyone, no matter their role or job title. 

People with the INFJ personality type can seem quiet or reserved. INFJs do enjoy collaboration within projects they are passionate about. They are driven to make the world a better place and appreciate the contribution others can make.

Feeling seen is important to INFJs. They want to create an environment where everyone feels comfortable. They reciprocate feeling valued by investing heavily in their teammates. Highly capable, INFJs are happy to pick up additional tasks if there are gaps or if colleagues appear overwhelmed. Sometimes this comes at the cost of their own energy and well-being.

INFJs' actions are driven by their values. This means they usually find criticism particularly difficult. They may also find it difficult to compromise on work they feel passionate about. When their eloquence fails to influence their colleagues, INFJs may find it difficult to find common ground. 

To get the most from an INFJ colleague, harness their insightful and creative way of thinking. Seek them out for projects and causes you know they will care deeply about. Their determination to make a difference makes them highly productive in the right environment. 

Make sure you give them the space to tend to their own well-being if you can see them becoming overwhelmed. And don't be afraid to challenge them if they always want to play peacemaker. Healthy conflict can sometimes help teams make positive breakthroughs.

Best careers for INFJ

INFJ personality types are motivated by roles where they can harness their altruistic nature and make a positive difference in the world. Like all MBTI types, INFJs can be found in a range of professions and industries. 

However, they are likely to get the most satisfaction in creative roles where they can build deep relationships and do meaningful work. INFJs gravitate towards caring professions and roles in social service or charitable organizations. The arts can provide an outlet for their innovative nature. Any career that aligns with their personal values will be a good fit for an INFJ.

Top career matches for INFJs include:

Sciences and health

  • Clinical psychologist
  • Anthropologist
  • Environmentalist
  • Massage therapist
  • Conservationist
  • Nurse
  • Mental health counselor
  • Physical therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Public health educator

Creative arts

  • Fine artist
  • Writer
  • Actor
  • Musician
  • Choreographer
  • Film director
  • Graphic designer

Business and technology

INFJs aren't motivated by power or commercial success. Traditional business roles may seem less appealing unless they are within an organization that aligns with an INFJ's personal values. If the organization is a force for good, INFJs may take on a number of business roles. From public relations specialist to human resources manager, the role is less important than the positive impact it creates.

Education, philosophy, academia, and law

  • Applied research associate
  • School teacher
  • University professor
  • Lawyer
  • Special education teacher

Miscellaneous

  • Social worker
  • Charity campaigner
  • Disaster relief worker
  • Veterinarian
  • Journalist
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INFJ-A vs. INFJ-T

The INFJ personality type can be further divided into assertive or turbulent identities. These identities affect all of the four elements that make up the INFJ type. 

Within the constraints of their overall type, assertive identities tend to be less sensitive to the needs of others. They are more self-assured. Turbulent identities are most perceptive and collaborative. But they can become overwhelmed worrying about things outside their control.

These two sub-categories bring a little more nuance to elements of the INFJ personality type. For example, all INFJs take action based on how it aligns with their internal moral compass. For INFJ-As, this means their stance on a particular issue tends to be black and white. INFJ-T types allow more space for gray. 

This means INFJ-Ts make more space in their work for the contribution of others. Both identities are collaborative. But, if INFJ-As feel passionately about something, they are more conflicted than INFJ-Ts if a different path is chosen. They may disengage from their teammates and go rogue. An INFJ-A would rather be a lone wolf than compromise their principles.

INFJ-Ts regard for the people in their life and desire to make a difference can mean they overburden themselves with others' problems. If they can't find a solution to the issue, they can become very self-critical. But, their deep altruistic streak fuels their determination to make a difference. This can lead INFJ-Ts to notable accomplishments. 

INFJ-As are also compassionate. They care deeply about the problems of people they are close to and of wider humanity. But they are more likely to be positive. They'll sink their energy into how they can find a solution rather than into rumination or worry.

Given these nuances, let's look at how some of the careers we mentioned above might suit the two identity sub-categories:

INFJ-A careers

  • Mental health counselor
  • Nurse
  • Physical therapist
  • Journalist
  • Social worker
  • Veterinarian

INFJ-T careers

  • Writer
  • Actor
  • Artist 
  • Musician
  • Disaster relief worker
  • Charity campaigner

Highest-paying careers for INFJ

INFJs thrive in careers that allow them to solve problems to benefit humanity. They are less motivated by salary. People with the INFJ personality type want to use their creativity and drive to make a difference in the world.

Some science and healthcare roles are well-paid. Of these, psychologists probably earn the most, averaging US$116,304. Senior registered nurses earn an average of US$93,480.

The creativity of INFJs can also lead to some higher-paying roles. In the arts, achieving a significant salary can depend on how renowned you are. The average salary of film directors is US$72,116. James Cameron, who directed Avatar and Titanic, is said to be worth around US$700 million. However. Boston Symphony Orchestra musicians earn US$116,988 on average. 

Other highly-paid options include:

INFJ strengths and weaknesses

At F4S, we think a bit differently about strengths and weaknesses than the MBTI test does. We believe that strengths and weaknesses are often situation-dependent. We prefer to explore what motivates you vs. what drains your energy. These things might overlap with what Myers-Briggs describes as strengths and weaknesses, but not always.

For example, perhaps (like many INFJs) you place your greatest effort behind projects that feel purposeful. Your integrity guides your decision-making. This means you never cut corners or shirk your responsibilities. You value the authentic relationships you've built with your colleagues.

However, your organizational culture values profit over principles. Some of the sales team use unethical approaches to close sales. This leads to a lot of disgruntled clients, and the customer service team is overworked. One colleague confides that the stress is impacting her marriage. 

You try to support your colleague but become frustrated that you can't seem to find a solution. Your own well-being begins to suffer. When your integrity forces you to call out the poor practices, it creates conflict between you and the sales team. Your contributions don't seem to create meaningful improvements. Your strengths don't end up shining.

Equally, perhaps there is something you're passionate about and love doing. This work motivates and energizes you, but you're not very skilled at it yet. It might not be considered an innate 'strength', but if you pursue a role with some elements of that activity, you're far more likely to enjoy your career.

That said, here are some INFJ 'strengths and weaknesses' as listed by MBTI:

INFJ strengths

  • Compassionate
  • Determined
  • Altruistic
  • Creative
  • Principled
  • Insightful
  • Purposeful

INFJ weaknesses

  • Stubborn
  • Sensitive
  • Prone to burnout
  • Self-critical
  • May disengage

INFJ careers to avoid

Our Myers-Briggs personality type hints at how we might prefer to work. It offers insight into what type of careers and work environments we might enjoy. But, it's important to note that any personality type can be successful across all industries and job roles. 

Our preferences may mean certain work types and environments are more challenging for us. But, if you're highly motivated to pursue a particular career path, there's no reason you can't excel.

Motivation is individual and can be complex. There may be both internal and external drivers for motivation. Sometimes these can be in conflict with one another. Developing increased self-awareness helps you identify the internal traits that drive your preferences for how, where, and when you work. 

At F4S, we recommend starting with our free self-assessment to unlock insights about where your unique motivations lie. This can help you understand how to harness your preferences to create a satisfying and successful career.

Sometimes there are strong external motivating factors that steer you toward a particular role. These might include an attractive salary, comprehensive benefits, or the ability to work from home. 

External motivations may result in you choosing a work environment that jars with your intrinsic motivation. Personal development programs and coaching can help you develop the skills needed to excel when working in ways less suited to your preferences.

So, if there is something you're excited about trying, go for it! It's always worth exploring something you're intrigued by or passionate about. Even if your MBTI result suggests you might be better suited to something else.

INFJs thrive when they find roles that align with their values. They are passionate about meaningful work. They want to find solutions to problems that trouble humanity - whether individuals they care about or on a global scale. They value authentic connections and enjoy creating deep and productive relationships with colleagues. Organizations that value profit over people will be challenging for INFJs to engage with. Superficial relationships and a lack of integrity are also upsetting for INFJs.

Given this, some roles typically have work environments or approaches that INFJs may find more challenging. Remember, this list below is just to give you an idea about the type of jobs you might not enjoy or may find draining. It doesn't mean you won't excel at them.

The following careers may be less suited to INFJ personality types:

  • Sales representative
  • Stockbroker
  • Hedge fund manager
  • Judge
  • Systems analyst
  • Data entry worker
  • Network architect
  • Banker

INFJ leadership

Here at F4S, we're intrigued by what motivates people. When considering leadership, it's important to reflect on these three particular traits:

  • Whether you enjoy power and control
  • How much you value belonging
  • How much you're motivated by achievement.

You will likely thrive in a leadership role if you enjoy power and control. If belonging is important to you, then a leadership position may feel isolating. 

INFJ personality types struggle with the notion of controlling others. They believe firmly in equality. This means it's hard for them to view themselves as superior to others, even in their positional authority. 

People with an INFJ personality type value harmony. They are independent thinkers, however. Belonging is less important to them individually than creating a working environment where others feel they belong. In leadership roles, INFJs will foster a culture of mutual respect. They will work to empower subordinates and give them confidence in their decisions and actions.

INFJs have consistently high standards for themselves, driven by their internal moral code. As leaders, they will pass those expectations on to their team members. INFJs will not indulge laziness, unreliability, or shirking of responsibilities. Anyone behaving unethically will be sternly dealt with.

INFJs can be highly effective leaders when they bring people together to pursue a shared vision. They are motivated to achieve but not at the cost of their integrity. Naturally self-effacing, INFJs lead by example rather than ego. Their determination, creative ideas, and commitment to the greater good can prove inspiring to their team. 

Our 8-week coaching program, 'Personal Power,' can help INFJs develop their confidence in leading others. This program helps them recognize that sometimes greater impact can be achieved by leveraging positional power.  It shows them effective ways to lead without compromising their core values.

INFJ teamwork

INFJs are reserved and independent. They are happy to collaborate with others who have a shared desire to make a positive impact on the world. But, INFJs can be intensely private. They prefer to focus on the difference their work is making rather than reveal too much about themselves. 

As long as INFJs are doing meaningful work, they don't really mind whether they are working independently or as part of a team. INFJ-Ts, especially, are happy to acknowledge that the contribution of others can sometimes multiply the positive impact they are able to achieve. 

Articulate and capable, INFJs are usually well-liked. They are always willing to help their teammates. INFJs dislike conflict. They are happy to mediate any squabbles and help create a harmonious work environment. INFJs need to be cautious that their peacekeeping doesn't mean that opportunities for healthy debate and disagreement are missed. 

People with the INFJ personality type tend to plunge headfirst into following their dreams. Their desire to effect positive change can mean they forget to consider more mundane details. This can feel unsettling to teammates who prefer to have a robust plan in place before taking action. Others will feed off the energy and positive determination of their INFJ colleagues.

INFJ celebrities

From the Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai to the K-pop artist Jay-B, INFJs are recognized for their determination to make a positive difference in the world.

Here are some famous INFJs:

Simone de Beauvoir
Simone de Beauvoir was an INFJ. She was a French philosopher and writer. Beauvoir used her literature to expose the oppression of women. Her 1949 book The Second Sex underpins much of modern feminism. Her intellect and visionary ideas reportedly made her father declare proudly that she thought 'like a man.'
Lim Jae-beom
Lim Jae-beom is an INFJ. Otherwise known as Jay B, he is a South Korean singer, actor, and songwriter. He initially shied away from singing, feeling it was meaningless. However, he changed his mind when he realized singing could be a vehicle to effect change. At only 24, he became an ambassador for ChildFund Korea, which supports underprivileged children. He has also made sizeable personal donations to disaster relief charities.
Noam Chomsky
Noam Chomsky is an INFJ. He is an American linguist and social critic. Chomsky is known for his academic research on language acquisition. Greater than that though is his political activism. He was a vocal opponent of both the Vietnam and Iraq wars. He rallies against imperialism and staunchly defends the right to free speech.
Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman is an INFJ. She's an Australian-American actor. Perceived as determined and reserved, Kidman explores her creativity through her work. She won an Oscar for her portrayal of Virginia Woolf. Kidman cares deeply about using her wealth and influence for good in the world. She has been a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador for nearly 30 years. Kidman campaigns for women's rights. In 2009, she testified in the US House of Representatives in support of the International Violence Against Women Act.
Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh was an INFJ. He was a Vietnamese revolutionary leader. He served as Prime Minister (1945-1955) and then President of Vietnam (1945-1969). He traveled extensively in his youth. He returned to Vietnam in 1941 to lead the independence movement. He fought against French occupation for all of his life and is praised as the 'father of the revolution'.
Jane Goodall
Jane Goodall is an INFJ. She is an English primatologist and anthropologist. Fascinated by primates from an early age, Goodall has spent over six decades studying them. Her chimpanzee has been a springboard for her passionate environmental advocacy. Much of her work now centers around animal rights and protection. She petitioned Air France to stop the transportation of monkeys to laboratories for animal testing. She has also appealed to the European Union to stop the practice of using animals for medical research and to abolish the caging of farm animals.
Malala Yousafzai
Malala Yousafzai is INFJ. She is a Pakistani human rights campaigner. Malala entered activism at an early age. She advocated for the education of women and children in her local province after the Pakistani Taliban banned girls from attending school. In 2012, Malala was shot in the head in retaliation for her prominent campaigning. She survived and bravely continued her advocacy. She founded the Malala Fund, which campaigns for the education of girls. In 2014, she was the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.
Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Fyodor Dostoyevsky was an INFJ. He was a Russian writer and journalist. Dostoyevsky used his writing to explore what it meant to be human in troubled 19th-century Russia. In his youth, Dostoyevsky joined the military as an engineer. It was not a comfortable environment for him. His principles led him to criticize corruption among the officers. He often shielded newer recruits from arduous tasks. Dostoyevsky advocated for social change, looking to remove the boundaries between working people and the affluent classes.

Editor's note: Do you recognize yourself in any of these famous people? Are you secretly nodding along, going, "I always thought I was just like Nicole Kidman?" Whether you are or you aren't, don't worry! This list is meant to be fairly light-hearted. It is based on traits and behaviors observed in our favorite celebs rather than in-depth research. After all, it's unlikely anyone actually put Simone de Beauvoir through an MBTI test!

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