NFs seldom make their way into positions of leadership (none of the Presidents have been NFs) but when they do they bring their own unique style to the table. Now, we could just leave it at that and go over some aspects of the ENFP leadership together. But wouldn't it be more interesting to analyze the leadership abilities of Adolf Hitler, the ENFP who tried to conquer the world?
In spite of being pure evil, the man did have great leadership ability, and he has been studied at length by countless scholars, providing much material for us to analyze. However, Hitler's value as a research subject is limited by the fact he was a very screwed up ENFP. This was mainly thanks to his father, a violent, verbally abusive individual.
It should be noted that contrary to internet opinion, Hitler was not an INFJ. At the very end of the war, he was extremely stressed out and began to take on some unhealthy INFJ traits. But these were not normal for him--his true, unstressed personality was ENFP.
So. Bearing in mind that we are talking about a very unhealthy, utterly evil individual who was unable to form even one intimate relationship with another human being--including his mistress--we can now proceed to examine some of the strengths of Hitler's leadership style. It is particularly interesting to note that so many ENFP talents can exist outside the expect NF framework of caring and concern for others.
- Charisma, charm, warmth, personal magnetism
- An ability to read others (an audience, a person) and adapt his communication style to their needs and group culture
- Bringing out others' talents and skills
- Inspiring hope for the future even when all seems dark
As leaders, ENFPs are engaging and bring a personal sparkle and vivacious charm that draws in their listeners. Hitler is usually portrayed in videos as a ranting demagogue. But in fact, he could just as easily be a calm, even hesitant speaker who projected an air of concern and optimism for the future. He simply used the approach that he instinctively knew would work best with each unique group of people.
On this same note, ENFP leaders are skilled as sizing up their followers and choosing the approach that will reach them best, speaking to their culture and needs. An ENFP corporate trainer, for example, may take quite a different approach with a group of human resources workers than they would with a group of engineers. Many other types adopt a "one size fits all" interaction style, but not the people-saavy ENFP. They know their audience and how to best engage them.
Another thing that ENFPs leaders are adept at is bringing out the best in their subordinates by engaging their latent talents, gifts, and enthusiasm. To some extent, all NFs do this; the ENFJ Teachers are particularly known for it. However, the ENFPs have this ability in a strong measure as well. An ENFP leader encourages their followers to give their best, and so inspiring are they that others naturally want to respond.
Individuals who lack confidence to perform a task can be charged up by an ENFP's warmth and encouragement.
One prominent member of Hitler's circle referred to him as "my catalyst."
One of the things that distinguished Hitler from his compatriots was his optimistic, even delusional faith in a good future. In the 1930s, when the economic and political situation in Germany was grim, Hitler stirred hope in the nation and began to revitalize things. Similarly, when the war was totally, utterly, completely lost, he nevertheless had an almost magical ability to draw his staff into a shared dream of future victory. (Then he decided to wipe out the entire German nation in a scorched earth policy. But I digress.)
When there is no sane, rational reason for hope, an ENFP leader will say, "I see a light--let's go!" Undaunted by setbacks and unwavering in their faith in the cause, an ENFP can inspire courage and hope in their followers when all the odds are stacked against them. ENFPs may achieve their goal, if only because no one else would dare to believe it could be done. Then again, they may end up committing suicide in a bunker and becoming the most hated person in the western world.
There, wasn't that more interesting than a dry, boring summary of ENFP leadership strengths? Told ya.
ENFP Champion | Oddly Developed Types