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I think it's interesting. We all did it at work years ago as part of a team-building exercise. One of my closest colleagues, also male, was an extreme P while I'm an extreme J. It was an "ahah" moment. Now we knew why we kept misunderstanding each other and after that we worked together much better and are still email friends in retirement.

I wonder if it has any applicability for helping sailing skippers and crews to understand each other better?


RE: Gender based interest - I have found that men engaged in middle to senior management tend to find these tools interesting as a way to profile their staff in the context of staff training.

RE: Utility - Whether these quasi-quantitative tools (absent attempts to spoof the test) are superior to instinctive qualitative evaluations, I am agnostic. However, I do know that if you are entering into serious negotiations with a persons, it is invaluable to have a read on their personality type. It is also useful to understand how others will read you.


I'd say a lot of men have little or no interest in Myers Briggs, probably because many of us are hesitant to talk about things we feel are too "touchy feely", preferring to grunt and groan over balky engines, lawn mowers, and beer. However, I find that stuff fascinating (Myers Briggs, not engines and lawnmowers). I do think people can sometimes take the results a little too literally, and use them to try to put others into neat little boxes which rarely apply in real life. Although it is funny how easy it can be to "type" people (I would have totally pegged you for an ENFP even though I haven't seen you for about 10 years). I read the profile of my type (INFJ) a few years back and it was scary how accurate it was in describing my childhood personality. Although as I said, it doesn't capture all of who I am, but it is pretty accurate in many ways.


one of the professors at the law school where i teach is a myers-briggs specialist (i.e., qualified to give the assessment and talk about it). i had him talk to my clinical students about m.b. typing and the potential uses in the practice of law. it was immensely helpful for me to see the range of types among the students and me (ENTP) and to deal with them accordingly. it also helped the students think more carefully about how they speak to their clients and how to approach potential breakdowns in communication.

when i was evaluated as a newbie lawyer, i was an ENTJ. now that i don't practice at a firm, i'm squarely in the "P" camp. apparently i've reverted to my "natural self."

as a side note, myers-briggs specialists prefer to refer to it as an "assessment" rather than a "test," so no one feels the pressure to "pass."


INTJ for what it's worth, particularly solid in the INT part. I was a psyc major once upon a time and would be more interested in that sort of thing than most guys. But, then, in our family, my wife is the principal helmsperson, auto mechanic, football fan, beer drinker, and video/tv/entertainment center hooker-upper and operator, among other talents; she I think is an INTP.


ISTJ. I think it's fun. My climbing partner is an ENFP, and we figure that's why I'm better on rock and he's better on snow/mixed ground.


I'm an ENFP too! Interesting.


I don't think much of it. People on the fence might want to check out this article:

Michael J.

I have so much interest in Meyers-Briggs I wrote a show-offy blog post about it.

I think the real value is to get people to start differentiating aspects of their selves [sic] and make distincitions between their view of the world and other views, no matter what the scoring criteria.

Bill Altreuter

I'm sure I've heard of this before, but I don't think I've ever taken one before. Apparently I'm ENTJ,
# moderately expressed extrovert
# moderately expressed intuitive personality
# distinctively expressed thinking personality
# slightly expressed judging personality.

I wonder if that's true.


Oh that's funny - I'm an ENFP too! I think the test is really interesting, I tend to think about it whenever I'm having a difficulty with someone. I've never noticed if men generally get more or less into it than women. I've met men who were very into it, but they sort annoyed me. (They were the type to believe in EVERYTHING way too much...)


I've done my best to avoid taking the test - my first job out of college was with a company that used it extensively in middle management, and as I got close to that level myself... yick. I saw it as a way to get pigeonholed.

I can see its appeal as a way to help an office of varied personalities work best together. Maybe if I knew more I'd get along with the idea better. But it's too easy for me to imagine someone similarly unfamiliar with its subtleties reducing unique personalities to a four-letter code.


Another INTJ here, heavy on the "I". (Hey Pat-- did you know that we "find it useful to learn to simulate some degree of surface conformism in order to mask our inherent unconventionality"?)

We all had to submit to the M-B before the first day of med school. It seemed to have no bearing on anything after that. Although perhaps this explains why they made me sit in the back row all through first year.

Whatever attracts women to the M-B, I suspect it's the same thing that attracts women to "having your colors done" and, perhaps, astrology (not to generalize, but this has been my observation, compared to men). What that thing is, though, is a mystery to me.

Carol Anne

Pat's right; I'm INTP. It means we generally get along well ... mostly.

"Where should we go for dinner tonight?"

"Oh, I don't know ... let's just start driving and we'll think of something."

"No, we're not leaving the driveway until I know where we're going."


I'm surprised that you are an N--I would have guessed that you were an S, just based on your highly sensate writing about nature, living in your body, etc. Are you borderline on those two categories at all?


I did it a couple of years ago at a firm retreat and thought it was pretty silly. Many of the questions were susceptible to multiple answers depending on what you felt like emphasizing at that particular moment and on how you wanted to portray yourself to people who were going to see the results, and the results themselves were just a set of labels that seemed a lot less useful than just getting to know your colleagues.

Charles Whittlesey

I find it interesting that all your respondents are Ns. Maybe that says more than gender about who is interested in M-B tests. (I'm an INFP.)

Personally I find them fascinating. I've read Jung's original version of the types, popularized by Myers and Briggs. He was a deeply insightful thinker, and I suspect any utility in the M-B indicator comes from him. (He was an INTP.)

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