The ESTJ Writing Personality: Decisive Logic

Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected. — George Washington

Can personality type affect your writing style?

ESTJs excel at relating objective, fact-based information. They carefully schedule their writing activities so they can finish before the deadline. Adept at presenting a logical argument, they like to take a stand in their writing. They systematically develop their ideas, complete their project, and move on.

The ESTJ personality type is one of 16 identified by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a popular psychometric instrument used to determine how people prefer to gather information and make decisions. The initials ESTJ stand for the following:

E: Extraversion preferred to introversion
ESTJs get their energy from people and activity in their external world. Spending time alone can leave them listless and bored. They enjoy interacting with a large group of friends and acquaintances. They generally act before reflecting.

S: Sensation preferred to intuition
ESTJs are concrete thinkers, placing more trust in experience than in flashes of insight. They’re more interested in sensory data than in the patterns perceived by the unconscious mind. ESTJs tend to be intellectually content—they want to enjoy the world.

T: Thinking preferred to feeling
ESTJs prefer to use their thinking function when making decisions. They place more emphasis on the rule of logic than on the effect that actions have on people. They tend to be skeptical in evaluating ideas, whether their own or someone else’s.

J: Judgment preferred to perception
ESTJs are drawn to closure. They feel satisfied after finishing a project or reaching a decision. They think in terms of likelihoods rather than possibilities.

Are you an ESTJ writer? If so, the following information may give you some insight into how temperament influences your writing style. Use these insights to help you play to your strengths and compensate for your natural blind spots.

Writing Process of the ESTJ

ESTJs may approach a writing project in the following ways:

  • Begin scheduling a writing project as soon as they receive it. ESTJs jot down their ideas in a rough first draft to give themselves something tangible to work with. They’re usually quick to see a theme forming in the draft, and this theme guides them through the development of the project.
  • Regard writing as a practical exercise rather than as a creative one. ESTJs want to meet the goals of their teacher, editor, boss, or project sponsor. For this reason, they like receiving specific instructions.
  • Are adept at writing technical materials, such as procedures, that require them to be clear and matter-of-fact. Since they’re unlikely to view writing as a means of self-expression, ESTJs tend to be efficient at writing corporate documents like annual reports, which can be draining for most other types.
  • Express their beliefs with a strong voice and conversational tone. They are unlikely to include any personally revealing information, however. ESTJs state their position, then back it up with concrete facts.

Potential Blind Spots of the ESTJ

ESTJs may experience the following pitfalls:

  • May state their point too strongly and risk offending their audience. To avoid this, consider the reaction of a loved one who might disagree with you. Revise with that person in mind to soften your tone.
  • Dislike writing about abstract ideas. Discussing the topic with a friend, particularly an intuitive type, may help you articulate an approach. Look for ways to add practical examples, such as case studies, to illustrate a theoretical concept.
  • Become blocked if the assignment isn’t well defined.  ESTJs want to limit their choices early and write toward a specific goal. Try picturing a specific person who exemplifies your audience, and write for that person.

Do you have any tips for ESTJ writers? Leave a comment and share your experience. Also, for more information on this subject, check out the sources below.


Write from the Start by Ann B. Loomis
Writing and Personality by John K. DiTiberio and George H. Jensen
What Type Am I? by Renee Baron
Your Personality Type and Writing: ESTJ
from the Villanova University website
George Washington Quotes at




6 thoughts on “The ESTJ Writing Personality: Decisive Logic

  1. In working with ESTJ writers, I’ve found one common weakness and one effective strategy to counter it. ESTJs often have such a strong need for closure, the need to get it done and check it off the list, that their revision and editing processes can be pretty sketchy. On the other hand, ESTJs tend to write best when they have a clear and specific purpose linked to a very specific audience, so an audience directed revision process may counter this tendency. Reading aloud gets the paper out of the writer’s head and into the sensory world, and reading aloud to an imagined audience (as though making a presentation or doing a radio broadcast) won’t seem nearly as tedious as re-reading a paper silently.

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