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The Details of ISFP Workplace Habits and Communication Style

The Details of ISFP Workplace Habits and Communication Style

Updated on Nov 18, 2022 | Published on Oct 04, 2022

Reviewed by Dr. Nereida Gonzalez-Berrios, MD , Certified Psychiatrist

The Details of ISFP Workplace Habits and Communication Style

ISFP workplace habits include good problem solving skills, devotion and dedication towards goal accomplishment, and excellent communication skills.

All of these characteristics make an ISFP quite a unique individual. Just like any other personality type, ISFPs can also thrive in specific work environments that play to their strengths.

In this article, we will talk about how an ISFP commonly behaves in a workplace, and what kind of work environments can help an ISFP flourish professionally. Keep reading to find out.

ISFP Workplace

The Myers-Briggs personality test, formally known as the Myers-Briggs Test Indicator (MBTI), divides human personalities into sixteen different types. One of those is the ISFP.

The acronym ISFP stands for introverted, sensing, feeling, and perceiving. Individuals with this kind of personality prefer to shy away from social interactions.

They want to live in the present moment rather than think of the bigger picture. These individuals are kind at heart and helpful towards everyone.

ISFPs are also non-judgmental, and easily trusting towards everyone.

Generally, ISFPs prefer to work alone, rather than in groups. This is because of their introverted nature. They are very much action-oriented individuals. ISFPs believe in action rather than words. They are often quite whimsical. 

The term “to wear one’s heart on their sleeves” applies perfectly to ISFPs. They always enjoy living in the present moment rather than thinking of the future. 

They give more importance to achieving immediate goals rather than long term planning. ISFPs are also good observers and excellent problem solvers.

To an ISFP, careers are not just about earning money. They also care about being satisfied with their job as well as their work environment. 

An ISFP personality type has a very strong sense of aesthetics and natural beauty. For this reason, ISFPs want their work environment to be aesthetically pleasing.

Studies have shown that ISFP types of children learn better in vibrant and colorful classroom environments rather than in dull and boring classrooms. Similarly, adult ISFP individuals also flourish in lively and vivid work environments.

In a traditional office space, ISFPs often prefer to have their own personal workplace or work desk, or an individual cubicle. They keep this personal space decorated brightly. They often keep personal memorabilia and photos of their loved ones in their personal space.

ISFPs often have a very creative and artistic mind. Many globally recognized musicians, actors, and painters have the ISFP personality type.

Thus, ISFPs want to have a reasonable extent of creative freedom in whatever work they do. They also do not like to follow strict rules or deadlines. 

An ISFP wants to be given a basic outline of the work they have to do, and then they want to do it in their own way. They do not like following step-by-step instructions about something.

ISFPs also have an adventurous side to them. They love getting the rush of adrenaline.

Because of all these reasons, it may be quite difficult for an ISFP to find success in a conventional and regular office environment, working a “9 to 5” job.

Below, we will discuss how an ISFP is likely to behave as a colleague, manager, or a subordinate, as well as how to behave with an ISFP in these positions.

ISFP as a colleague

As we have mentioned before, ISFPs prefer to work alone, rather than in teams. However, it would be wrong to say that they are not good team players. ISFPs are altruistic, helpful, and generous by nature. So, they are willing to adjust their own needs to suit the needs of their team members.

ISFPs want their team members to be at the same level of hierarchy as their own. For example, they do not prefer to be a part of a team where senior leaders and junior subordinates are working together.

ISFPs are non-judgmental. They are easily open to trusting everyone. Qualities like these make them good team players.

But despite this, ISFPs have a tendency to not conform to socially acceptable norms. They also do not like to follow strict rules, nor do they care about deadlines. They want to work on their task in their own way, and at their own pace.

So, if you are a non-ISFP type of individual working with an ISFP individual in a team, you must take the responsibility to ensure that the ISFP individual does their portion of work on time. 

You must also praise them for their work, as ISFPs love to receive positive feedback. Similarly, while giving negative feedback, you must make sure to not hurt their feelings.

ISFP as a subordinate

ISFPs prefer to work independently and do not like to follow strict rules and deadlines. This makes them difficult subordinates. They also cannot accept negative criticism. 

Because of their sensitive nature, they are prone to getting emotionally hurt quite easily if anyone disparages their work. 

So, if you are a manager who has to provide negative feedback to a subordinate who is an ISFP, make sure to not be rude. Instead, provide suggestions on how they could improve their work.

ISFPs hate being micromanaged. So, if you are the manager of an ISFP, you should avoid giving detailed task instructions. Do not follow up on their work at every step. Instead, let them complete the work on their own. 

ISFPs have an artistic side and they want some degree of creative freedom. If you, as a manager, can give them that creative freedom, the quality of their work will also improve.

ISFP as a manager

ISFPs normally do not like to be in leadership positions. However, this does not mean that an ISFP cannot succeed in a managerial position.

ISFPs themselves are independent workers with a strong penchant for problem solving. They do not like to follow strict rules and procedures. 

So, if an ISFP becomes a manager, he or she shows that level of flexibility towards his or her subordinates. 

They may order subordinates to perform a certain task and expect a tangible result, without giving proper step-by-step instructions on how to do that task. This may lead to problems in the workplace.

ISFPs also have a sensitive personality. They are also kind-hearted and generous. This makes ISFP managers very well-liked among subordinates. For this reason, they are also approachable and easy to talk with, from the point of view of subordinates.


ISFP personality type and workplace communication

ISFPs normally do not love to socialize with others. As a result, they desire a friendly atmosphere in their workplace. They are not competitive or serious by nature. 

So, they become easily dissatisfied if they are surrounded by people with such characteristics. 

The bonding that ISFPs share with their colleagues as well as the emotional aspects of the work environment, determine the amount of happiness they feel in their workplace. 

ISFPs cannot function in an inflexible environment. They become restless when they are expected to follow a set of strict guidelines. 

They hate a controlled environment and a rigid structure which, they feel, will hamper their creativity as well as production of work. In a flexible environment, they are better able to showcase their skills and produce original or unique work.

However, ISFPS have a need for autonomy and novelty in their lives. These are referred to as ‘Extraverted sensing’ which they use as their secondary cognitive function. As a result, most ISFPs prefer changes in their workplace. 

They find delight in the challenges faced in new work environments or even new careers. Thus, a constant change in their work environment keeps them happy and content. 

ISFPs, like other people, can often be subjected to abuse or bullying in the workplace. They are very sensitive to negative comments or criticisms. 

They will often repetitively think about harsh comments over a long time. If they receive criticism on a regular basis either from their boss or co-workers, they tend to become unhappy, and doubt their own skills and capabilities. 

Since ISFPs are very kind and helpful towards other people, this makes them a target for advantageous and corrupt people to use them for benefits in their own career. 

ISFPs are emotionally intelligent. This helps them to understand other people’s emotions. As a result, they are able to bond well with their workmates and build a lasting relationship with them.


Having a meeting with ISFP personality type – What it looks like

ISFPs usually do not work in the forefront. Rather, they prefer to stay behind the scenes. 

So, it is essential for a person to be encouraging and affirming while meeting them. If they feel appreciated for the work they do, they will feel motivated to do their work flawlessly in future endeavors. 

As we have already mentioned before in this article, ISFPs take criticisms too seriously. Thus, it is necessary to provide them feedback which is positively framed. 

ISFPs also prefer clear instructions about how to proceed and complete a task that is given to them. 

The instructions provided should be very specific, direct, and informative. This helps them achieve their goals independently. 

Supervisors should break down any complicated or abstract idea into simpler parts before it is presented to an ISFP. If this is not done, they might get confused and not understand the information provided to them. 

ISFPs, as we know, love to provide help to others. So, if they become aware of the fact that their work is helpful to others, they will feel motivated and become more effective. 

On the contrary, if an ISFP feels that information can be stressful to other people, they will feel demotivated to use such work in their work. 

Hence, it is always better to explain to them the benefits of presenting a particular piece of information to other people, rather than just telling them to present it to other people.


ISFP personality type and conflict resolution in the workplace

ISFPs usually have deep rooted inner values. If they ever feel that their work requires them to compromise their values, a conflict might arise. So, supervisors should always discuss the gray areas of morality with them to avoid conflict. 

ISFPs are not vocal about their needs or wishes. So, it is important to hear them out and give them a chance to speak about the issues they might be facing in the workplace.

We have also previously discussed that ISFPs do not like working under strict deadlines or rigid rules. So, if you, as a supervisor, ask an ISFP individual to follow specific timelines, this may also lead to a conflict. 

The solution to this is to simply trust the individuals. ISFPs know the value of trust. So, if they realize that their supervisor has asked them to finish a particular task, they will do everything to make sure that they do that.

Essentially, ISFPs are peace loving individuals. They always want to avoid conflict. But unfortunately, workplace conflicts are a part of everyday life, and they are unavoidable. 

If such a situation does arise, ISFPs generally tend to leave it as it is, because they believe in short-term solutions rather than long-term ones. 

In that case, the other person should take the first initiative to resolve the issue. They must remain calm and talk softly, making sure not to hurt the ISFP person’s feelings.


To Sum Up

Overall, in this article, we have talked about the behavior of ISFPs in the workplace. To sum it up, ISFPs are gentle, peace-loving, and kind-hearted individuals. So, they want their work environment to suit these needs. 

Although they prefer to work independently, they are flexible enough to be a team player if the situation demands so. ISFPs thrive in a vivid and colorful work environment. 

They have a strong affinity for such work where they can use their creative freedom, such as interior decorators, fashion designers, artists, musicians, etc.

Because of their sensitive nature, ISFPs do not react well to negative criticism. So, during meeting situations or while resolving conflicts, their opponent must make sure that they remain gentle and courteous. 

They should avoid criticizing an ISFP’s work openly, so as not to hurt their feelings.