4 Careers to Avoid for INTP Personality Types

People who have the personality type of INTP are another rare group, covering only approximately 3% of the population. This personality type is most similar to the INFP, but their major difference is INTPs aren’t too keen when it comes to the aspect of ‘feelings’. INTP stands for ‘Introversion, iNtuition, Thinking, and Perceiving”, and are commonly known as ‘the thinkers’ because they love to work with the abstract and theoretical to solve problems but find the implementation and execution processes to be dull and uninspiring. They are more logical and pragmatic when making decisions, and can be very creative and enthusiastic when tackling new ideas and novel possibilities. However, they would prefer to work on their own time and are not very good at staying organized and adhering to deadlines. They are also driven by competence, creativity, cleverness, self-mastery, and conceptual precision and tend to be perfectionists, especially when it comes to themselves.

Highlights of INTP Personality

  1. They reflect inward and have great focus (introversion).
  2. They have a great imagination and are highly innovative and creative when exploring possibilities (intuition).
  3. They channel their attention towards the objective and logical analysis of information (thinking).
  4. They are responsive to new data that are presented, giving them flexible and open attitudes (perceiving).

Careers to Avoid

INTPs are highly intelligent and innovative individuals making them suitable for jobs related to research, university education, law, engineering, and writing. Of course, they should not be limited to these professions and should feel free to explore other types of work that they will find fulfilling and suitable for their personality. However, below are some types of work that INTP personalities should carefully consider before pursuing.

1. Politics

This involves a lot of socializing and being visible in public, giving speeches in front of large crowds, traveling from one place to another, interacting with various individuals and addressing their concerns, as well as approving lots of projects (instead of brainstorming or working on them). All these activities can be stressful for INTPs.

2. Management

Those with INTP personalities can easily spot loopholes in the system and could enjoy coming up with creative and innovative solutions to fix them. They will also be able to identify what underlying factors are affecting the business or economy. Because of these qualities, some say INTPs will make good entrepreneurs. However, managerial tasks also require being talkative, selling yourself and your business, socializing, handling employees and their concerns, as well as adjusting to, managing, and even tolerating different types of personalities and levels of behavior. It requires leadership and people-handling skills, which most INTP individuals run away from.

3. Clerical Work

This usually involves processes that are automated or routine. These jobs can be like torture to INTPs since they require little to no creativity and innovation, especially if the tasks are repetitive, monotonous, and don’t require much thinking. It can be like prison for someone who lives for the joy of learning and being intellectually challenged.

4. Telemarketing or any Marketing Job

These types of work require you to be charming, talkative, aggressive, and engaging. It is also results and profit-oriented, and you need to be available and accommodating to talk to customers the whole day and deal with their concerns. This can be extremely stressful for those with INTP personalities who relish logic and are generally introverts. If they do join this line of work, it can be bad for the company as they will handle their spiels and conversations in a disengaged manner as if telling the customer, ‘Let’s just get this over with.”

Ideal Work Environment for INTP Personality Types

Sometimes, it is the work environment that causes a lot of stress in a person. It is helpful to know what sort of work environment INTP personalities can best thrive, feel fulfilled, and attain happiness and satisfaction with their career.

1. It values intelligence.
They can thrive in workplaces that allow them to brainstorm, analyze, and exchange intelligent ideas. They will enjoy working for organizations or institutions that appreciate their brilliance and their insights, such as universities and consulting firms.

2. It allows for independent work.
INTPs like to focus when they are throwing ideas around in their mind. They prefer to work alone and independently and to have their own private office or work area in order to be more productive.

3. It is cutting edge and encourages new ideas.
Monotony and rigidity can be difficult for INTP personalities to work with. Environments that promote innovation, creativity, and different thinking are ideal for them since they are free to explore and present new ideas.

INTP Personality Types at Work

These are some of the common work traits observed in individuals who are classified as INTP personalities.

  1. They prefer to work independently and alone for the team.
  2. They usually try to avoid confronting conflicts as much as possible.
  3. They enjoy sharing their expertise but may get frustrated or be impatient with people who are not as intelligent as they are.
  4. They tend to be impatient with errors, inefficiency, or discussing ideas that have already been covered.
  5. They might detach themselves from the group when they need to analyze, critique, or solve a problem.
  6. They can effectively communicate the outline of a vision. They are great in grasping underlying principles, theories, and designing.
  7. They like to be intellectually stimulated and will be excited when presented with a task that is mentally challenging.
  8. They are very thorough when gathering data for a proposal, project, or design, but they are not very good in translating all the research into a report.
  9. They are not too reliable when it comes to following deadlines, and this frustrates them too because they know the job is incomplete. However, they will usually lack the motivation to complete it.
  10. They can have problems with authority or following the norm, and are known to be argumentative and socially awkward.


The ideas mentioned above are general ideas and suggestions that may not be applicable to everyone who classifies as an INTP personality type. The best basis to know which career is best for you is to identify where you can achieve professional growth and attain fulfillment.

Author Biography
Keith Miller has over 25 years of experience as a CEO and serial entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur, he has founded several multi-million dollar companies. As a writer, Keith's work has been mentioned in CIO Magazine, Workable, BizTech, and The Charlotte Observer. If you have any questions about the content of this blog post, then please send our content editing team a message here.