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  1. #1
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    Default Dealing with (N)TJ work environments

    Hello all!

    To put this topic in a little bit of context, I am an engineer by current profession, a former "laser research physicist", and spent a lot of time in grad school. All of those are/were extremely NT/TJ/NTJ environments. As in "look, someone who isn't an INTJ?!?!?!?" While one might initially think that research should be like a total ENTP playfield, in all of my experience its actually EXTREMELY INTJ with a dash of INTP, a smidgeon of ENTJ, and maybe maybe maybe an ENTP somewhere, far away, that you only see once in a while when passing in the hall. [My background is mostly physics, other fields are definitely much less INTJ populated. I'll bet I've been several places that were 75% comprised of INTJ's]. So my questions is "How do we as NF's deal with working in TJ environments?" If you wish to refine to NTJ environments in particular please feel free to do so. Realistically, most people that get selected for management/leadership tend to be TJ's, so I'm expecting that many people should be able to respond from personal experiences, even if you don't have a very math/technical background or work environemnt.

    I think it noteworthy to point out that I've almost never had problems dealing with ISTJ's. In my experience they tend to see that you are trying and making progress and that suits them fine so they don't generally feel any need to nitpick/refine how you do things. I've seen ESTJ's go that way sometimes, or else be very critical of how you do things. In my experience it's the NTJ's that seem to constantly be very critical. Or perhaps its just physics NTJ's that seem to really ooze the critical vibes???

    Responses?

    For other NF's who might be in research, what general field are you in and how would you describe the feel of it? Does if feel NTish, NFish, both? Do you feel comfortable, accepted, like you belong?

  2. #2
    Member Gengar's Avatar
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    First of all, I seriously have to admire you for going into the engineering profession.

    I think the most important thing is to make yourself competent (which I'm sure you are).

    But apart from that, I had to deal with INTJs by masking myself. This means fighting objectivity with objectivity. When I went around them, I'd purge myself of my emotions for the time being. For some reason, that gains respect and a bit of trust from INTJs. I don't really see the logic behind it, but it works for me :S Just let them work by themselves, and when you have to work with them, just remain somewhat emotionless for that time and tell them you're fine if you split the job up.

    I tend to avoid ENTJs at all costs (no offence), I don't know how to deal with them.

    I never had much trouble with ISTJs, ENTPs, and INTPs either. They tend to be quite easy-going.

  3. #3
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    Unhealthy TJ types are a nightmare to work with... in any way. My sympathies.

    For NTJs just show that you're competent in your work and it should be ok. A well rounded ENTJ would respect you for being competent at your job if this was a strictly work relationship, same goes for INTJ.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

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  4. #4
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    Yes, good inputs. Perhaps I should have been more clear, I was not trying to ask about "how do you present yourself" while working in TJ environments, but feel free to talk about that if you like. I will say I've met NTJ's that you were golden with once you demonstrated adequate competence and was okay with that, but I've definitely met other NTJ's that see to have a force field of "thou shalt not interfere with me, present emotions/personableness in my presence, nor expect emotions/personableness from me". I don't even wanna think how many conversations I've been around to the affect of "people are incompetent" "[whoever] is so stupid and dumb" "all people are idiots" "society is just a bunch of lame dumb idiots that parrot the idiotic, pointless, stupid actions/thoughts/feelings of other lame/dumb/stupid people" "people are no better/smarter than lemmings" "the world would be better off if all stupid people just killed themselves" etc. But I'm getting off track...

    I was thinking more along the lines of "how do you keep your NFness" or your "FPness" or just your F, or how do you get a chance to use/flex/demonstrate your F side, or how do you deal with such a T environment? How did you make it doable/survivable as a long term endeavor? How do you keep from feeling like your being twisted from an NF into an NT or into a TJ?

    I am reminded of the line in Kroeger and Thuesen's "Type Talk" about "although as an NFP , she may find the world of engineering foreign, even hostile turf".

    And if engineering is supposedly a tough go, man it has NOTHING on physics or physics culture!

  5. #5
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    All you can do is ignore it really... And continue suppressing it. But don't hold back something if it must be done just because you're an F, but you know this. You still need to do your job well. Don't let this stop you from doing that.

    My suggestion would be to find an INTP to make friends with, since you mentioned having INTPs around. They have been great for me for work and friendship, and they aren't really intimidated by your showing of Fi like unbalanced TJs are.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

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  6. #6
    Member Gengar's Avatar
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    Well if you really want to slip in NFness, just do it subtedly during lunch breaks. And be confident when you do it. :O

  7. #7
    Senior Member Scott N Denver's Avatar
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    At every job I've had, I've tried to get to meet and get to know and learn about and be on good terms with each person. I've had friends with all the NT types including INTJ's, and a number of people have commented about how friendly I am and that I make a point to meet new people and check in with people I already know. At my current job, there is a historical core of NT personnel, but we also have a LOT of IST's, and even a decent number of SF's. I believe I am 1 of 3 NF's there. I have many friends at my current work, and have had many at my previous jobs. I find that people that I am not friends with its usually because of their choice, and those people are overwhelmingly TJ's. Still being NF and Fi, I want things to work better and be more harmonious!

    I read somewhere that Fi and Te are mutually antagonistic functions, as well as Fe and Ti being a mutually antagonistic pair of functions. In my experience I'd totally agree with that. I find that many NTJ's seem to have an extremely strong independent streaks along the lines of "this is what I'm doing, get out of my way, don't expect me to do things in a different way or to conform to the expectations/hopes/desires/feelings of others!" Hyper-individualistic, strong or extreme uncomfortableness with the presence of the expression of emotions, and needing everything to be ordered/structured are some other traits I've seen in many TJ's and NTJ's in particular. "Don't impede on my freedom!, you better demonstrate competence!, don't expect emotions from me!" might as well be 3 defining phrases for them.

    Again, feel free to focus on NTJ's in particular, but I'm trying to generalize I bit more to __TJ's, in part since people are more likely to have more work experience with them.

    If someone wanted to condense the point of this thread down to a single sentence, I'd phrase it as "How does one make a long term go of surviving in a __TJ work environment?" I'm sure there are far more TJ work environments than there are NTJ work environments and that as NF's we've generally encountered far more TJ environments than NTJ ones. IME, NF's generally run far far far away as quickly as possible from NTJ environments. And for many good reasons. No wonder why I was like usually the ONLY NF around...

  8. #8
    Aspie Idealist TaylorS's Avatar
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    I have a love-hate relationship with TJ enviroments. On one hand I like the order, routine, and clearly defined roles and lines of authority because of my Asperger's. On the other hand I get really pissed when people's feelings get stepped on, especially when it's in the name of "efficiency" and "profit".

    I think the person who invented the term "Human Resources" deserves to be sent to Gitmo and be waterboarded; I hate it when TJs treat others as mere cogs in the machine to be exploited for profit rather then treated as individuals with their own wants, needs, desires, and dreams. People should NEVER be treated as mere means to some end, individuals are ends in themselves.
    Autistic INFP


  9. #9
    Filthy Apes! Kalach's Avatar
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    Mere cogs?

    Without the cog there is no machine. So from a task focus point of view, they're not "mere." Importance of the person measured by "What have you to contribute?" rather than "What's your feeling?"

    Wanna make a competition of FJ values versus TJ values? Both will lose.


    As for surviving in a TJ work environment... is this question asked as a working element of that environment or as a whole person with thoughts and dreams and wishes that (*gasp!*) exist outside of work too?


    This is a kinda naive observation but INFPs being all an INFP can be tend to expect INTJs to be more authoritatively active than the INTJs usually want to be.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott N Denver View Post
    Hello all!

    To put this topic in a little bit of context, I am an engineer by current profession, a former "laser research physicist", and spent a lot of time in grad school. All of those are/were extremely NT/TJ/NTJ environments. As in "look, someone who isn't an INTJ?!?!?!?" While one might initially think that research should be like a total ENTP playfield, in all of my experience its actually EXTREMELY INTJ with a dash of INTP, a smidgeon of ENTJ, and maybe maybe maybe an ENTP somewhere, far away, that you only see once in a while when passing in the hall. [My background is mostly physics, other fields are definitely much less INTJ populated. I'll bet I've been several places that were 75% comprised of INTJ's]. So my questions is "How do we as NF's deal with working in TJ environments?" If you wish to refine to NTJ environments in particular please feel free to do so. Realistically, most people that get selected for management/leadership tend to be TJ's, so I'm expecting that many people should be able to respond from personal experiences, even if you don't have a very math/technical background or work environemnt.

    I think it noteworthy to point out that I've almost never had problems dealing with ISTJ's. In my experience they tend to see that you are trying and making progress and that suits them fine so they don't generally feel any need to nitpick/refine how you do things. I've seen ESTJ's go that way sometimes, or else be very critical of how you do things. In my experience it's the NTJ's that seem to constantly be very critical. Or perhaps its just physics NTJ's that seem to really ooze the critical vibes???

    Responses?

    For other NF's who might be in research, what general field are you in and how would you describe the feel of it? Does if feel NTish, NFish, both? Do you feel comfortable, accepted, like you belong?
    Be good at what you do, or working to be good, honest and commited to the goal. Thats generally all we ask of others in working situations.

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