People paths

ESTP personality type

ESTP: Extravert-Sensor-Thinker-Perceiver

  • Extraverts are outgoing, energetic and action-oriented. They are enthusiastic and expressive
  • Sensors live in the present. They rely on facts, handle practical matters well and like things to be concrete and measurable.
  • Thinkers make decisions using logic and impersonal analysis. They think with their heads rather than their hearts.
  • Perceivers prefer a lifestyle that is spontaneous, flexible and adaptable. They like an environment that is unstructured, and like to keep their options open.

An ESTP at a glance

ESTPs are life’s adventurers. When an ESTP type is around, life is really buzzing! The lights are on and the action begins. They believe that life is not a rehearsal – so everyone should go for it!

People warm to an ESTP quickly which is great because they need people. They are energetic, warm, friendly, enthusiastic and have a great sense of humor. ESTPs are primarily focused on the here and now. Their motto or philosophy of life could easily be make the most of the moment! They have a built-in need to be a doer – to always be physically and mentally active. To be engaged in a great variety of activities involving as many people as possible. However, people who know them well realize that, despite all this dynamic flow of energy, they can also be logical and grounded.

Some experts in personality types think of an ESTP as a super hero character. They love to move faster than a speeding bullet and leap tall buildings in a single bound!

Their probable contributions to an organization

Each personality type has a different set of skills, talents and attributes that they bring to an organization, group or relationship. Here is a list of those most commonly associated with personality types like ESTP.

  • Places his/her whole body and soul into a project.
  • Is pragmatic, outgoing, quick and flexible.
  • Values and operates according to firsthand experience instead of theories.

On a team

Some people work well on teams, others work best on their own. Understanding the personality types of team members provides information about how individuals are likely to carry out their work and interact with each other. Given the personality preferences of an ESTP, the following are the strengths (and possible weaknesses!) they will most likely bring to a team:

  • Is flexible and responds quickly.
  • Joins teams and projects with enthusiastic optimism and a conviction to succeed.
  • Establishes objectives, routes, purpose and benchmarks.

ESTP leadership style

Each personality type has its own leadership style, strengths and blind spots. The following highlights an ESTP approach to leadership, provides clues as to how an ESTP will act in a leader role, and pinpoints some of the leadership qualities.

  • Seizes the day and the opportunities.
  • Motivates and inspires others.
  • Easily clarifies problems, collects opinions, offers alternatives and determines immediate action.

Communications style

Effective communication is composed of two elements: how well you listen, and how you express yourself. Good communication skills are at the heart of success. Being aware of how we communicate, how others communicate and how we prefer others to communicate with us, is a significant step in achieving this objective. Your personality style has its own communication strategies that are more effective for you than other’s communication styles.

  • Speaks with energy, excitement, charm, wit and joviality.
  • Replies quickly and deftly; thinks on his/her feet.
  • Prefers talking in person and interacting with others, rather than communicating with written reports.

Problem solving

Different people solve problems in different ways. Based on the ESTP personality type, ESTP’s will probably use the following methods and skills in problem solving:

  • Searches out the facts to a problem.
  • Gathers together information on what others in the organization are actually doing.
  • Looks at what has been done previously about the situation.

Stress Profile

Stress plays a significant factor in our abilities to be effective at work and have healthy sustainable relationships. The greater the stress, the harder it becomes to maintain quality work and quality relationships. Each personality type has strengths and blind spots. Under stress, blind spots emerge and people rely on their least favourite functions to operate.

Stress triggers
  • Being surrounded by too many serious people and judged for being easygoing and carefree.
  • Having too many duties, obligations or responsibilities.
  • Being forced to make decisions about distant prospects.
Stress profile characteristics
  • Loses their easygoing agreeable nature.
  • Becomes pessimistic and worried, taking feedback from others way too personally.
  • Their good-hearted humor tends to evaporate.


People are usually most effective when their environment matches their preferences and work style. When a good match is not present, it will be more difficult to achieve results. Below are some of the ESTP’s work preferences and key characteristics that ESTP’s look for in work, or try to avoid. These key characteristics also indicate how an ESTP would typically like to be managed or related to.

  • Likes comrades who are equally hardworking.
  • Prefers situations where immediate concerns can be tackled.
  • Becomes annoyed with, and de-motivated by, strict adherence to policies and procedures.

ESTP Learning style

For many years it has been known that different personality types have different ways of learning. Knowing how a person learns is a big advantage for structuring on-the-job training or classroom instruction. The ESTP learning style is as follows:

  • Becomes absorbed in learning when it generates prompt rewards.
  • Grows restless if active learning and high energy are not part of the environment.
  • Enjoys hands-on experiences and direct observations.

Opportunities for Growth

As we grow and mature, it is important to pull back from our favourite ways of doing things and build skills in the areas of our least favourite preferences. We thereby become a more balanced and versatile individual. The following suggestions address some of the ESTP more obvious blind spots and are areas to pay attention to.

  • Be aware that you may take on too much and you do not necessarily carry through with multiple projects.
  • You may get into trouble with an over-dependence on last minute improvisations, the adrenaline rush of emergencies and the ensuing stress that this creates for others.
  • Focus more on setting priorities and goals to avoid continual pressure cookers and the appearance of being irresponsible.

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