ESFJ
 

ESFJs share the same action-orientation of ESTJs, but with a people-based focus.

Driven by a sense of duty, they are the cooperative, helpful, sympathetic, and personable pragmatists, disliking anything ethereal or woolly. They prefer practical solutions to people issues, and they’ll work hard at making those solutions happen.

Everything for ESFJs becomes personal and is filtered through a more subjective “how do I feel about this person” process rather than an objective and logical one. ESFJs equate a logical approach with being cold and harsh, thus negating being helpful, which is at the core of the ESFJ being.

ESFJs prefer a familiar routine and an established practice and do not like being thrown into unfamiliar situations. Any change will be treated with caution and suspicion. They believe change drags them out of the place where they feel strongest and where they can contribute the most. The ESFJ’s value system has been built over time and anything that seems to threaten that system will be viewed with trepidation.

ESFJs are organized and caring, and love to contribute and remain constantly valued, productive, busy, and liked.

Characteristics

  • Warm-hearted
  • Sociable
  • Strong value system
  • Always doing something nice for someone else

Areas of Growth

  • Give people a second chance
  • Take care of own needs
  • See values as less absolute
  • Be open to the “big picture”

Attitude

ESFJs like things to be definite and do not tolerate ambiguous situations well. They are anxious to please and to do the right thing.

Energizers

  • Control over workload and schedule
  • Supportive environments
  • Honest and open communication
  • Feeling connected with others

Stressors

  • Uncooperative co-workers
  • Confrontational relationships
  • Sudden change
  • Criticism

To function at their best

ESFJs require harmony, encouragement, praise, and emotional support. A structured work environment with many opportunities to work with people is also needed.

Relationships

ESFJs value family ties and friendships and tend to be slightly sentimental in their approach. They want to appreciate and involve others in situations. Under pressure, ESFJs may become like the “controlling parent,” smothering others in their attempt to provide support and believing that their way is best, becoming sensitive to any perceived criticism.

ESFJs need to “talk it out” and vocalize what they are doing. This extroversion (E) combined with sensing (S) means they will go into minute detail when communicating. If you ask ESFJs how they are feeling, they will be grateful—as they are usually the one checking up on others—and then may go into what will appear to be a lot of unnecessary detail in explaining how they are.

Ensuring people are taken care of is a priority for ESFJs, and they will work long and hard to make sure harmony is maintained. While ESFJs want everyone to feel valued, they also want to feel part of the group themselves—they need to feel included.

ESFJs are extremely talkative and will voice their feelings easily, including clearly telling others what they should do. They also have their own strong views on issues that are important to them. ESFJs are driven by a sense of duty, being at the center of things, making sure that everything is taken care of with a clear plan of action, and that people are following the plan in detail.  

ESFJ at work

ESFJs are loyal, conscientious, duty-driven, detailed, and essential doers, in that they are action-oriented and like to get things done rather than think about them. Workplaces that are stable, predictable, and that value adherence to the rules and established norms are good environments for ESFJs. Their dislike of conflict means ESFJs would also work best where the atmosphere is warm and friendly, everyone knows their place, and they can support and take care of others, in their way.

ESFJs dislike ambiguity and need clarity and harmony. Once they know what is expected of them and others, they can then work practically and systematically to succeed, ensuring people are taken care of and that what has been agreed upon is completed on time and exactly as planned, to the letter. ESFJs will bring order and prefer when it is adhered to by others.  

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