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INTP Communication Skills

INTPs try to categorize everything around them and to validate the logical rigor of these categorizations. They feel the best when their categorizations turn out not only to be logically correct, but are also confirmed in real life.

When communicating, INTPs come across as respectful, well thought out, and to the point, but at times may appear a bit remote. They may appear lacking warmness and cordiality. But, with people of equal intelligence they may enter into discussions or debates. INTPs often distance themselves from superficial acquaintanceship and keep to a social circle of colleagues and like-minded individuals.

INTPs try to maintain an objective assessment, even when discussing topics relating to the finer feelings of the soul. Thus, for instance, discussions of love and lyric poetry do not elicit in them as much of an emotional resonance compared to the drive to analyze the subject of the feelings.

At times, INTPs seem a bit closed and distanced in conversation. But it is during this time that they revise their categorizations and/or engage in the creation of new ones. Those who can gather the reasons behind INTPs’ tendency to seem distant can easily initiate a conversation by making a critical comment regarding categorizations they build.

The social contacts of INTPs can be few in number and are mostly limited to their circle of relatives and friends - the majority of the latter are made up by people from the same intuitive/thinking typological group (NT).

Although INTPs often do not have that many business contacts, nonetheless, their business communication can be fairly intense. This is explained by the fact that their colleagues (or other people working in the same field) find it important to get an INTP’s in-depth expert opinion on many professional issues. Their business communication usually includes exchange of opinions, ideas, concepts, and methodological approaches.

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INTP: Strategies for Successful Communication

When communicating with people of intuitive/thinking types (NT) including ENTJ, INTJ, ENTP, and INTP personality types, i.e. with people in their own typological group, INTPs can be open to an active discussion. People in this group have about the same way of looking at the world as this type does and therefore INTPs find it easy to share their views with other NTs and in turn comprehend their reasoning and views.

When communicating with sensory/thinking (ST) people including ESTJ, ISTJ, ESTP, and ISTP personality types, INTPs should keep to communication based on facts and their direct consequences. This type of communication is fairly acceptable for INTPs on the one hand, and on the other it seems to be best suited to the way ST people think, and they comprehend it well.

When communicating with people of intuitive/feeling types (NF), including ENFJ, INFJ, ENFP, and INFP personality types, it’s preferable for INTPs to keep to communication that is mostly based upon ideas, concepts and theories. Communication between INTPs and representatives of this group often touches on a multitude of aspects of topics being discussed. However, sometimes the parties can find it difficult to move from discussions to a practical reality. This probably happens because a significant proportion of NF people judge based on their feelings whereas INTPs strive to maintain the most objective and impartial view. Because of this, in many cases their opinions can contradict each other’s when it comes to how to act.

The most complicated is communication between INTPs and sensory/feeling types (SF) including ESFJ, ISFJ, ESFP, and ISFP personality types. When communicating with SF people, INTPs should keep to communication that is based upon feelings, facts and concrete sensations. The problem, however, is that INTPs find it difficult to maintain dialogue in this way. They end up straining to put forth argumentation that can be easily comprehended by the SFs, which often leads to INTPs trying to wrap up the conversation. In order to reach an acceptable level of communication for both sides, INTPs have to prepare themselves for a communication style best suited for representatives of the SF group, beforehand.

 How to determine which personality type group another person belongs to?

What helps successful communication for an INTP:

  • There is enough time available for thinking about the topic
  • The topic of discussion is conceptual in nature
  • A need to find hidden, unobvious possibilities
  • A need to clearly understand how events may unfold
  • The topic calls for a creative approach
  • The other party is an NT or ST person

What hinders successful communication for an INTP:

  • Fast-paced conversation on a topic with weak logical connections
  • The topic is of purely practical nature
  • The topic heavily involves the finer feelings of the soul for too long
  • Long communication with SF people

Read more about communication strategies »

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