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ENFPs are energetic, outgoing, compassionate individuals who are encouraging, persuasive and empowering. They are at home in the world of people and enjoy working with a variety of them.
They are inspirational people, often having big ideas to develop the potential in others and improve circumstances for them.
They think about methods and models that can enhance growth and learn for the individual.
ENFPs enjoy working in groups and teams and value the diversity that the group brings to the table.
They can spot strengths and weaknesses of others and strive to bring out the best in each through collaboration or cooperation.
When you are communicating with an ENFP:
BE SUPPORTIVE AND ENCOURAGING
As mentioned, ENFPs love collaborating and cooperating with people and bring out each’s potential in any situation. In the same way, they expect others to be supportive and encouraging them.
When you’re communicating with an ENFP, praise them for their small efforts toward achieving goals either in person or through emails or memos. Be affirming when they share their ideas and compliment them when possible.
GET TO KNOW THEM PERSONALLY
ENFPs are most effective when they work with people they enjoy being with. Hence they might engage in small talk longer than what you might be comfortable with; they want to build a personal relationship with you on top of work as well.
When you’re communicating information to them, especially if it’s important, do it casually over a cup of coffee; have a casual chat with them first before getting to the important information.
FOCUS ON HOW IT DEVELOPS PEOPLE
ENFPs think about how their work can impact people on a big scale and bring out their potential. They often think up theories, models and methods that can do so.
When you’re communicating information with them, as much as possible, talk about possibilities for people.
For example, talk about a new initiative that allows more people to be put in challenging positions; or a project will help people discover their strengths or weaknesses.
When ENFPs see the human development potential, they are often convinced.
That said; let’s look at what will possibly cause conflict with an ENFP, and how you can avoid it.
VIOLATION OF THEIR DEEPLY HELD VALUES
Although ENFPs appear to be very flexible and casual, they do strongly hold a core set of values and beliefs.
If one of their deeply held beliefs or values is violated, a stubborn and firm character emerges, and a conflict will happen unless the other party backs down.
Usually, such an outburst or a firm stand will surprise everyone because of their usual easy-going and casual nature. In such a scenario, allow ENFPs to speak up and have themselves heard.
Attempt to explain the rationale behind your decision from a values/humanistic point of view, and understand it will take a lot for the ENFP to change their stance.
HURTING OR OFFENDING THOSE CLOSE TO THEM
ENFPs also deeply value those people they care for.
In the same way, they can turn stubborn or firm when their values are crossed, if they feel those they care for are being victimised or hurt, they will stand up for them as well.
If this happens, hear the ENFP out and apologise if necessary.
UNNECESSARY BUREAUCRACY THAT STIFLES THEIR INNOVATION
ENFPs love unconventional ideas that bring out human potential, and they enjoy the flexibility and leeway to execute their ideas.
However unnecessary bureaucracy, especially in big organisations that require them to keep the status quo will stifle that innovation. Although most ENFPs learn to live with it, sometimes it might lead to a conflict.
Give space for the ENFP to try their ideas out. Big organisations like Google have already started giving some of its employee’s space to implement their ideas, and this is something you can emulate.
Allow them to experiment and tinker with ideas without fear that it is against company policy or convention. They might just surprise you with their brilliance.
If you’re an ENFP, consider these as avenues for development:
STAY ON COURSE AND FOLLOW THROUGH
ENFPs can sometimes become distracted by their surroundings or by new ideas, and they lack the follow through to complete some of their ideas. More often than not, their ideas are big ideas and will take a few weeks to a few years to complete.
Learn to focus and stay on track even when you feel all inspiration for the current project is gone. When that happens, find renewed inspiration for it again and think about all the possibilities when the current project or assignment is done.
NOT EVERYONE WANTS TO DEVELOP HUMAN POTENTIAL
People development is a strong theme for you, and you strongly believe that everyone has something unique and different to bring to the world.
This motivates you to understand strengths and weaknesses of each and strive the bring out the best in them.
However, you must also understand not everyone wants to develop human potential. It may be a point of persuasion for you but understand that other people look out for tangibles like the bottom line, productivity and results. Learn to persuade with such information as well.
SOME PEOPLE DO NOT LIKE ENTHUSIASTIC METHODS OF PERSUASION
You may be very enthusiastic and energetic when you try to persuade someone, but understand that others may distrust this form of persuasion and find it overbearing or insensitive.
Learn a quiet and gentle approach toward persuading others; you might find that it is far more effective.
Also, for the task-oriented individuals, adopt a more business-like, results-focused approach to convince them.