What personality type was Marilyn?
Developer Personalities: Audience Brief
Developers don’t think like the average person. In fact, developers are somewhat of a breed apart. They’re likely to identify themselves as craftsmen and artisans, in an engineering, technical-problem-solving sense. While there are many ways to assess personality types, one of the most widely accepted is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator ® (MBTI ® ), a way to illustrate personality differences.
The MBTI describes personality types based on four pairs of opposing traits, and then describes each of the 16 types using a four-letter acronym. In the influential Please Understand Me: Character and Temperament Types, David Keirsey and Marilyn Bates described personality types based on the “Keirsey Temperament Sorter.” These tools help us better understand how software developers think.
So, just what are the most common personality types for software developers? The accepted wisdom, from the seminal Professional Software Development by Steve McConnell, reports “the most common personality type for software developers is ISTJ” based on two surveys conducted in 1985 and 1990. However, a new Developer Media survey suggests otherwise.
Developers Are Different
In June 2013, Developer Media asked professional developers on CodeProject.com, one of the world’s largest developer communities, to take the MBTI and report the results. We discovered that 70% of developers fall into five personality types (see chart). The remaining 30% consist of the other 11 personality types, and those are each only about 2-3% of developers. (ISTJ, what we used to think was the leading personality type, is the second most frequent type and does not represent much of a difference from the US population personality distribution.)
Developers Prefer Facts: INTJ, ENTJ and INTP
Why are these personality types important? They represent the biggest difference from the regular population. These three “NT” personality types represent about half of developers, compared to only about 6% of everyone else. Keirsey describes “NT” personalities as “Rational,” meaning they are objective, and like to reason with facts. They are driven to master their skills and work hard to do so. They are, unsurprisingly, drawn to technology. They judge speakers and statements by their authority and ability to prove assertions. Upcoming briefs will examine developer personality types in greater depth and provide tactical suggestions for effective marketing.
In short, developers are highly competent, driven by technical achievement, and skeptical of everything. These traits make communication challenging. In a July 2013 CodeProject survey, developers revealed they are most likely to describe themselves as “engineers/scientists,” “puzzle solvers,” “craftsmen/craftswomen,” and “artists.” These developer personality archetypes map to the personality types we identified and prefer different communication styles. These top-level insights suggest how savvy marketers can best communicate with developers: good developer-focused messaging should be concrete, relate to skills mastery, and be provable.
About Developer Media
Developer Media is the world’s leading media company focused entirely on software/app developers. The company helps tech vendors and advertisers, from startups to multinationals, build results-driven marketing programs especially designed to drive awareness and adoption of their developer tools, APIs and platforms. Developer Media custom-tailors plans for each client to move prospects through the marketing and sales funnel to become customers.
Developer Media reaches approximately 20 million unique software developers each month across thousands of influential, dev-centric websites, communities, blogs, and projects, including its flagship site, CodeProject, and other leading sites like CodeCall forums, CodePlex, and W3Schools (developer-specific areas). It’s the largest selection of quality, developer-focused media in the world. Each site is hand-selected and regularly monitored for quality, content and performance.
The Developer Media audience is worldwide, reflecting the developer population. Visitors to its sites work for companies of all sizes and use many different tools and platforms. Professional developers — 95% of the Developer Media audience — use not only Microsoft tools for enterprise development, but also tools and languages most suited for Web and mobile development (Ruby on Rails, Objective C, NoSQL, Python, HTML5/CSS3, etc.). As tech marketing experts, the Developer Media team brings decades of experience in the developer market. For more information, visit www.developermedia.com.
Jeff Hadfield, CxO
Marilyn Monroe (born Norma Jeane Mortenson; June 1, 1926 – August 4, 1962) was an American actress, model, and singer. Famous for playing comedic «blonde bombshell» characters, she became one of the most popular sex symbols of the 1950s and early 1960s and was emblematic of the era’s changing attitudes towards sexuality. She was a top-billed actress for only a decade, but her films grossed $200 million (equivalent to $2 billion in 2019) by the time of her death in 1962. More than half a century later, she continues to be a major popular culture icon.
Description above from the Wikipedia article Marilyn Monroe, licensed under CC-BY-SA, full list of contributors on Wikipedia.
Introverted, Sensing, Feeling, Perceiving
Focusing on the here and now, the ISFP personality type will live life to the full, cherishing the present moment, and finding real pleasure in the more sensory and practical activities such as painting or handicrafts. They need an inner balance, a kind of karma for their lives and this means keeping things as uncomplicated as possible. Planning and control are not for the ISFP, they much prefer to stay in the background doing the things they like, keeping a balance, which includes choosing to remain, happily disorganised. Quiet supporters, rarely will an ISFP be the leader, preferring to remain behind the scenes, observing, understanding, but saying very little.
Marilyn Monroe Characteristics
The ISFP is the astute observer of life, quiet, introspective and kindly. Harmony and respectfulness of values are so important to them. And although trust takes quite some time to establish, once it has been, the ISFP will be a solid and dependable friend. Yes, it will take some time to really get to know the inner values of an ISFP, but the reward will be a friend for life, a friend who will proactively anticipate problems and quietly support others. Conversely if trust is broken, the ISFP will (again quietly) walk away, no fuss, apparently passive but stubbornly refusing to engage again. Gentle supporters, the ISFP will prefer to remain behind the scenes, rather than lead, observing, understanding, but saying very little. There is a stubborn side to the ISFP, but this is more of a passive stubbornness, meaning they may say ‘yes,’ but mean ‘no.’ Their gentleness and thoughtfulness means that the ISFP can be an excellent mediator in the team, seeking out the positive and building harmony. Patient and very flexible ISFPs follow the path of least resistance, rarely criticising the beliefs, actions or attitudes of others. This also means that they will not always stand against change but will instead internalise events and then accommodate for these events rather than trying to control or resist them. The desire for harmony at all costs also means that the ISFP may not voice their concerns, preferring to bottle up their feelings possibly for longer than is good for them. Their view is that to be forthcoming is to put your head above the parapet and the ISFP will not do that readily. Focusing on the here and now, the ISFP will live life to the full, privately enjoying the present moment, and finding real pleasure in the more sensory and practical activities such as painting or handicrafts. Unlike the INFP who will be intensely future focused, the ISFP wants to remain in the concrete reality present until their need for experience is satiated and they move onto the next, new sensory experience. They need an inner balance, a kind of karma for their lives and this means keeping things as uncomplicated as possible. This need for balance and harmony may mean, however that the ISFP puts off a decision until the decision is made for them. Being so present-oriented they may neglect to plan or even try to glimpse into even the near future preferring to take life as it comes along. Planning and control are not for the ISFP, they much prefer to stay in the background doing the things they like, keeping a balance which also includes choosing to remain happily disorganised.
Gentle supporters, the ISFP will prefer to remain behind the scenes, rather than lead, observing, understanding, but saying very little.
The downside of this is that the ISFP can be overly laid back and, unless it is important to their values, have ‘one speed,’ with little acceleration. The ISFP wants, and needs, a cooperative environment, where harmony is a first principle, and confrontation is kept to a minimum. Incredibly perceptive, ISFPs are ahead of the game and are usually the first to tune into the ‘new wave.’ Many ISFPs throw themselves into new fashions, ‘avant garde’ experiences, ‘hip’ trends, some even setting these trends. Their natural impulse hankers after freedom, and they often push off when others least expect it. The ISFP who continually represses these impulses will lack energy and may eventually push off anyway, towards anything provided it is different. Formal education is difficult for the majority of ISFPs, they prefer experiential learning, at which many excel. ISFPs will practice playing an instrument or honing a favoured skill such as painting for hours on end, not so much as practice as for the sheer joy of the experience. Often confused with the INFP, ISFPs are less dreamers and less future oriented than INFPs, preferring to live out their sensory experiences and make them happen in real time, rather than enjoying imagining them in the future. They will internalise their feelings so much that they will be difficult to know, although sometimes these feelings will leak out at inappropriate times. The ISFP often project their reactions to their feelings, rather than the feeling itself.
Please Understand Me
Please Understand Me: Character and Temperament Types (first published in 1978 as Please Understand Me: An Essay on Temperament Styles) is a psychology book written by David Keirsey and Marilyn Bates which focuses on the classification and categorization of personality types. The book contains a self-assessed personality questionnaire, known as the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, which links human behavioral patterns to four temperament types and sixteen character types. Once the reader’s personality type has been ascertained, there are detailed profiles which describe the characteristics of that type.
Based upon the notion that people’s values differ fundamentally from one another, Keirsey drew upon the views of several psychologists or psychiatrists: Ernst Kretschmer, Erich Adickes, Alfred Adler, Carl Jung, and Isabel Myers who are all mentioned as predecessors in the psychology of temperament or personality.  Of these methods, preference is given to the Myers–Briggs test when determining personality type. 
Sixteen personality types [ edit ]
Keirsey and Bates offer a personality inventory to help readers identify their type. They are taken from the Myers–Briggs Personality Inventory. The sets of indicated preferences create sixteen types:
- E or I (Extraversion vs. Introversion)
- N or S (INtuition vs. Sensation)
- T or F (Thinking vs. Feeling)
- J or P (Judging vs. Perceiving)
An appendix offers a concise profile description for each of the sixteen types. 
Four temperament types [ edit ]
Then Keirsey simplifies these sixteen types into four groups, whose archetypes he equates with the classical four temperaments: SP (Artisan), SJ (Guardian), NT (Rational), and NF (Idealist).
- SP (ISTP, ISFP, ESTP, ESFP): Called the Dionysian or Artisan temperament
- SJ (ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTJ, ESFJ): Called the Epimethean or Guardian temperament
- NT (INTJ, ENTP, INTP, ENTJ): Called the Promethean or Rational temperament
- NF (INFJ, ENFP, INFP, ENFJ): Called the Apollonian or Idealist temperament
Keirsey organizes the groups asymmetrically, asserting Thinking vs. Feeling as the most salient distinction among intuitives, but Judging vs. Perceiving as the most salient distinction among Sensers. His methodology emphasizes the four temperaments, as he defines them, to generalize about different aptitudes and needs.
Please Understand Me II (1998) is a sequel, whose methodology generalizes more so according to these four categories.
References [ edit ]
- ^ Keirsey & Bates (1984), pp. 3-4
- ^ Keirsey & Bates (1984), p. 4
- «The Myers & Briggs Foundation — MBTI® Basics».
- Keirsey, David; Bates, Marilyn (1984). Please Understand Me: Character & Temperament Types (Fifth ed.). Prometheus Nemesis Book Company. ISBN0-9606954-0-0 .
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