ENFP Careers, Jobs, & Majors

By Dr. A.J. Drenth

ENFPs want to find a career they are passionate about. Settling for a mediocre career choice seems unacceptable to this personality type. As for INFP career-seekers, money is rarely a strong motivator for ENFPs, who generally care little about material comforts or possessions. They’d rather be doing what they love and living in a shack than get rich performing unsatisfying work.

ENFP college students may struggle to identify a college major that can satisfy their broad-ranging interests and abilities. Like ENTP career-seekers, the broad and expansive nature of ENFPs’ interests stems from their dominant function, Extraverted Intuition (Ne). While Introverted Intuition (Ni) can be associated with a desire to go ever deeper into a given subject, Ne tends to be more expansive and dilettantish. Like other NP types, ENFPs feel compelled to explore all their options before making any permanent decisions. They need to experiment and experience life in order to “find themselves.” Hence, it can be unrealistic for ENFPs to expect any single college major to satisfy all their interests and curiosities.

ENFP Career, Comedian

ENFP Career, Comedian

Despite the challenge of funneling their wide interests into a specific career, job, or college major, ENFPs can excel and find satisfaction in a broad-range of careers. ENFPs are generally intelligent, creative, good with people, and can have a knack for entrepreneurship. Those who develop their tertiary function, Extraverted Thinking (Te), can also make excellent leaders.

ENFP Holland Career/Code Interests

To orient our discussion of ENFP career interests, we will now draw on six interest themes described by John Holland and the Strong Interest Inventory. The Holland career interest themes include the Realistic (R), Investigative (I), Artistic (A), Social (S), Enterprising (E), and Conventional (C) domains, commonly known as “RIASEC.” After identifying one’s preferred interest domains, these letters can be combined in a way similar to the personality types to form a multi-letter “Holland Code” (e.g., IAS, RAI). This can help individuals identify their best career choice.

Individuals with Realistic interests enjoy physical, hands-on work, often involving machines. They may take up careers such as computer science, engineering, architecture, and construction. Realistics tend to enjoy working with “things” more than people. It is therefore unsurprising that this interest domain is correlated with a preference for Thinking over Feeling. Research suggests that S, T, and P types are somewhat more drawn to Realistic work than are N, F, and J types.

As Perceivers, ENFPs are somewhat more inclined toward Realistic work than ENFJ career-seekers are. Many ENFPs love being outdoors and immersing themselves in nature. While Realistic interests are rarely foremost for ENFPs, they may opt to take up Artistic or Investigative work with a Realistic element. They may, for instance, pursue careers in forestry, environmental science, or landscape architecture. Various types of art, such as the technical side of music, might also entail a Realistic component that ENFPs find interesting, allowing them to marry their NF with their Te tertiary. This was embodied in the life and work of Steve Jobs, who was compelled to marry his interests in art and technology.

(This Personality Junkie post is continued on the next page.)

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Comments

  1. mirjeta says

    Moving from IT education, to informatics teacher to another different “field” lcarriers like music journalist, enviroment journalist, to sales…I’m just looking what’s next :) Agree with “a knack for entrepreneurship”.. It is something that I’m exploring at this time. The best jobs for ENFP that I’ve found in different sites are creative jobs and entrepreneurship. Actually, I’m reading a lot about time management, discipline, follow-through (all things that we ENFPs must work through..:)..So , what’s next …:)))

  2. Imran says

    I’ve just done three online personality tests because i felt the need to understand myself after my Divorce. In fact i was deeply interested in reading people, understanding what makes them tick….and then i was intrigued about the different types of personalities….

    All Tests came back as ENFP. The descriptions were so accurate! its like reading about yourself in words. This now made me want to test the people in my life…So I’ve begun to test people around me….it’s my new project….new interest….and is so amazing learning the different strengths and weaknesses of each type….the relationships between the types…and career paths……I’m not happy in my Job….I’ve never settled in a stable job….Started in sales….Then IT support…but my dream was always Animal photograpy or teaching kids Wildlfe facts…

    I’m so glad i’m not alone!