The Myers & Briggs Foundation

"It is up to each person to recognize his or her true preferences."
Isabel Briggs Myers
All Types Are Equal

All preferences are equally valuable and each type brings an important point of view when people interact. A mixture of types is best for a work group or team because many views are represented.

MBTI® type indicates a person's preference but not his or her ability or character. Personality type should be used as a way of understanding yourself and for assisting you in making choices. However, it should not be used as the only tool for choosing careers, partners, jobs, schools, etc.

The most important aspect of the Myers-Briggs® type theory is that every type has value. Although each type approaches situations differently, and another person's approach may not be what you would choose, each way can be effective.

For example, let's say you have a friend named Mario. Mario's type may lead him to like doing things at the last minute, while you are uncomfortable if everything isn't scheduled and planned in advance. Mario may feel constrained when he has to plan far in advance. You are not right and Mario wrong. Mario is not right and you wrong. Different ways, based on different personality types, work for one of you and not for the other.

Of course if you and Mario have to work on a project together, or live in the same family, your differences can be irritating to one another. This is when knowing about personality type can help. You can accept his way as valid and he can accept yours. You can accept that Mario has certain gifts and you have others. Then you can negotiate compromises to be able to live or work together in harmony.

What Each Preference Can Offer


Outwardly directed energy needed to move into action

Responsiveness to what is going on in the environment

A natural inclination to converse and to network


Inwardly directed energy needed for focused reflection

Stability from attending to enduring ideas

A natural tendency to think and work alone


A mastery of the facts

Knowledge of what materials and resources are available

Appreciation of knowing and doing what works


Insight and attention to meanings

A grasp of what is possible and what the trends are

Appreciation of doing what hasn't been tried before


Analysis of the pros and cons of situations, even when they have a personal stake

An ability to analyze and solve problems

Want to discover the “truth” and naturally notice logical inconsistencies


Knowledge of what is important to people and adhere to that in the face of opposition

The ability to build relationships and to be persuasive

Desire to uncover the greatest good in a situation and notice when people may be harmed


Organization, planning, and follow through on projects

Push to get things settled and decided

Appreciation of well-organized efficiency


Quickly and flexibly responding to the needs of the moment

Strive to keep things open so new information may be gathered

Appreciation of the need for spontaneity and exploration

Adapted from Profile of your MBTI® Results, by Gordon Lawrence and Charles Martin (CAPT 2004).

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