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ENTPs are sceptical and analytical individuals who are easy-going and casual. They are big picture thinkers, always thinking about how to improve existing systems and situations with new innovative ideas.
When speaking about these ideas, they are usually very persuasive in convincing people to their point of view.
Being sceptical, they are often questioning others about their points of views and debating others’ perspective, believing that it leads to mutual growth and understanding.
They are independent and casual, preferring that others allow them to perform their tasks independently.
When you are communicating with an ENTP:
BE OPEN TO HEAR THEIR PERSPECTIVE
Whenever you give ENTPs new information, they usually will have a differing perspective from you. They prefer not to agree simply, but would like to offer other points of views so that all bases are covered.
Be open to listening to their critique and opinions; sometimes you may find a better way of doing something or achieving an objective. Although it might seem like they’re challenging you, they usually are just challenging the idea so that a better idea can emerge.
Better yet, go to them with various alternatives and discuss with them all possibilities and perspectives and make a decision together. ENTPs will appreciate that.
USE LOGIC TO CONVINCE THEM
Avoid personal or emotional issues during the discussion as those things do not convince them. Present the information as objective and impersonal as possible and analyse the information from a detached, logical perspective.
Do the cost-benefit analysis and compare consequences of logical alternatives. Use tools like charts, maps, outlines to drive your point home.
FOCUS ON THE BIG PICTURE
ENTPs enjoy discussing innovative and strategic solutions to complex problems from a big picture, long-term perspective. When presenting a problem, be ready for a discussion with ENTPs about it.
Avoid focusing too much on the details of execution or requiring immediate short-term results from them.
Also, when giving them a task, there is no need to give them specific instructions. The big picture usually suffices, and ENTPs will proceed to think up the most innovative solution for it.
That said; let’s look at what will possibly cause conflict with an ENTP, and how you can avoid it.
BEING PRESSURED TO REACH A CONCLUSION
ENTPs require time to consider various options, thinking about their pros and cons, and look at the same situation from different perspectives. This takes time and some discussion and debate with others.
If, however, they are pressured into making a decision or coming to a conclusion without giving them time to consider, conflict may ensue.
As mentioned earlier, give them some time to consider alternative perspectives and be open to listening to their point of view. Have a discussion with them about the pros and cons of each view before you make a decision, especially one involving them.
ENTPs often think up the various options to solve complex problems and will take the best-perceived option. Sometimes, their methods can be unconventional and against the norms.
You have to give them the space to find this solution.
ENTPs greatly value that independence that they’re given to achieve the tasks. However, if there’s micromanaging by their superiors, ENTPs find that stifling to their creativity and innovative nature. If overdone, it will cause extreme frustration to the ENTP.
Learn to give space to the ENTP to come up with solutions to existing problems. You might be surprised by their unconventional but brilliant suggestions.
WHEN THEIR COMPETENCE IS DOUBTED
ENTPs deeply value competence and believe in their competence in performing their tasks well. However, if people show a lack of trust in their ability, it could generate conflict.
Trust ENTPs to complete their tasks well by giving them the freedom and empowerment to do it. Believe that they will do a good job for you by resisting the urge (if any) to check on them once in a while.
Until proven otherwise, believe the ENTP can perform well.
If you’re an ENTP, consider these as avenues for development:
NOT EVERYONE LIKES A DEBATE
Understand that while you like to have a debate or discussion on issues, not everyone does. Most people may perceive you as a devil advocate or just somebody who simply needs to disagree, and will not view you favourably.
Learn to put aside issues that are not important toward achieving an objective by not debating or discussing them. While you might think a different view will improve the decision, people prefer the harmony and agreement.
Also, sometimes people prefer getting to action instead of discussion. Be decisive when working with these people.
Look at the short-term implications
You’re most interested in the big picture; the long-term strategic solution, but take a step back and look at the short-term implications and immediate consequences of your choices too. Sometimes in the pursuit of the big ideas, immediate realities can be sidelined and ignored, only to have it come staring you in the face later on.
Also, present your thoughts in a sequential, time-based action plan so that people know what they have to do right now. Break it down for them.
OFFER POSITIVE FEEDBACK AND ENCOURAGEMENT
While you do not see the need for positive feedback or encouragement, others see it as important to be effective at their work. Learn to give praise, even for the small achievements, understanding that it will go a long way in building a good working relationship.
Also, hold back on your tendency to criticise. Learn to frame your corrective feedback more positively, for positive reinforcement can be a much more effective tool to motivate other people.