About Me

Twenty years ago I asked a Tarot card reader what would I be doing when I was 50. She replied, “I see you doing something so wildly creative, it defies a job title.” Only recently did I realize that was a slick way of saying, “I have no idea of what you’ll be doing.” But that prediction kept me charging ahead to the fifties with zeal and anticipation. Now that the future is today, I’m ready for anything!

The Myers-Briggs Minnesota Budget?

People who don’t want to agree won’t agree. But for people who want to come to an agreement, knowing what motivates the other person in negotiations is a powerful tool for achieving consensus.

In Minnesota, Democrats say the Republican-controlled Legislature hasn’t compromised on a state budget. The Legislature says they have already compromised, and that Democratic Governor Mark Dayton is being unrealistic.  If a budget isn’t reached soon, state government workers will be laid off as of July 1. Private contractors with state contracts will have their jobs and pay suspended.

Perhaps the legislative leaders and Governor should begin the special session with Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®  exercises.

For people who aren’t familiar with Myers-Briggs, the MBTI® is the most widely used personality assessment in the world. Conflict management, decision making and negotiations are some of the ways the instrument has been used for over 50 years. The guiding principle of the MBTI is that everyone has inborn strengths and blind spots, and that personality is the best predictor of behavior.

When taking the MBTI, the person indicates their preferences for a series of statements across four categories to determine
  •      whether their source of energy is inward or outward  (Introversion or Extraversion)
  •       how they process information (Sensing or Intuition)
  •       how they make decisions (Thinking or Feeling)
  •      the degree of structure or organization they prefer (Judging  or Perceiving)
Once a preference has been determined for each category, the four-letter personality type is revealed. There are 16 personality types recognized by the MBTI. Mine is INFP. Famous people who share that personality type include Princess Diana, Mister Rogers, Albert Schweitzer, the poet W.B. Yeats, and, I suspect, Governor Dayton.  

I’m not a certified MBTI trainer. I have, though, spent over 100 hours listening to candidate Dayton during the 2010 gubernatorial debates, rewinding and replaying the audio for video transcription. During those hours I heard these INFP traits:
  • fierce devotion (to Rudy Perpich and his “None of us is as smart as all of us” motto)
  • awkward verbal communication that turned eloquent when talking about intensely held beliefs (Remember the Cop Killer question at Gamefair?)
  • an empathetic personality
  • great distress over the inability to preserve values (proposed cuts to education and health care)
There aren’t many INFPs around; according to this chart, 3½ percent of the general population are INFPs, compared to 15% with the profile ESTJ (Extraverted/Sensing/Thinking/Judging) and 14% with the profile ESFJ (Extraverted/Sensing/Feeling/Judging). When you’re part of such a small population, it’s easy for others to think you’re odd or goofy or, God forbid, erratic.

I found out years ago I was an INFP when a supervisor told me that people in meetings felt I wasn’t “getting it.” Thanks to a supportive human resources person who shared this book, I learned that I process information in a roundabout way that doesn’t always make sense to others. I also learned to pinpoint my blind spots to interact more effectively with colleagues of other types. (When I become CEO every employee badge will list the employee's profile in addition their name.)

I have friends who are government employees, and friends who are private consultants with government contracts. I also have a deep appreciation for government services. For all of these reasons, I hope there won’t be a shutdown. Maybe it would help if the leaders learned their colleagues were an INFP, ESTJ, or ENTP. ASAP.

Find meetups with others who share your MBTI profile here.
Join a local chapter of the Association for Psychological Type International (APTi) here

1 comment:

  1. Thank you to MinnPost for choosing this post to feature as today's Blog Cabin selection! Link here: http://bit.ly/jFpqLe


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