Top 7 INTP Career Matches + College Majors to Pursue
by Lisa Sparrow
If you’re an INTP (Architect), you’ve probably been accused of being lazy more times in your life than you’d like to admit.
Don’t worry—you aren’t alone, as this is one of the biggest misconceptions about Architects.
The truth is, laziness isn’t necessarily an inherent flaw that all INTPs share. More often than not, it’s the result—and a sign—of being stuck in the wrong career.
That’s why we’ve created this all-in-one INTP career guide to help you make better career choices and harness your ambition.
So, read along to discover the best and worst career matches for INTPs, top college majors, Architect workplace strengths and weaknesses, and more!
7 Best Career Paths for INTPs to Consider
Whether you’re scouting for careers for INTP females or males, here are some options you can’t go wrong with:
If you’re interested in high-paying INTP careers, then engineering might be your best bet, as engineers’ median annual salary is more than twice as high as that of all other workers.
Thanks tointroverted thinking (Ti)—the dominant INTP cognitive function—Architects possess highly analytical minds. They’re often drawn to complex technical subjects, and while others may struggle to grasp them, INTPs tend to pick them up incredibly easily.
Also, people with this personality type enjoy a good challenge and have strong problem-solving skills that translate well to engineering. Oftentimes, their critical and creative thinking abilities help them come up with innovative solutions to problems completely on their own.
Not to mention, engineering isn’t a solitary job, yet it still provides just the right amount of independence. This is something INTPs certainly appreciate due to their introverted and individualistic natures.
So, here are some good engineering job options for Architects:
- Aerospace Engineer
- Biomedical Engineer
- Civil Engineer
- Electrical Engineer
- Industrial Engineer
- Robotics Engineer
Given Architects’ love of research, it’s not surprising that science made it onto our list of the best INTP careers. After all, scientists usually dedicate their lives to gaining complete knowledge of their scientific field, which is something that typically fascinates INTPs.
Architects get easily absorbed in their interests and love to research them inside out. So, as long as they choose a field that they feel passionate about, it’s guaranteed that they won’t lose interest quickly. If anything, they might just become experts on the topic!
Since Architects are gifted with both creativity and logic, they can excel in hard and soft sciences alike. They relish exploring abstract theories no less than conducting practical experiments to test their hypotheses, which makes this career path a great fit for INTPs.
Now, let’s check out some of the most popular scientific jobs for INTPs:
- Biomedical Scientist
- Environmental Scientist
- Political Scientist
- Research Scientist
While most careers on our list require you to have a college degree, there are some INTP jobs where no degree is needed. More often than not, they fall into the arts field.
Even though arts may not seem like a typical career choice for the scientific-minded INTP personality, let’s not forget that extraverted intuition (Ne) is their auxiliary function. As such, they are rather original and more than capable of brainstorming new creative ideas. Oftentimes, their willingness to experiment contributes to their success in this field.
Generally speaking, Architects are big on innovation, so they’ll likely prefer artistic jobs that embrace the use of media and technology. Most jobs in this field also allow them plenty of autonomy and flexibility, which helps bring out their creative talents since INTPs can feel trapped in overly organized, structured environments.
With that in mind, INTPs often make exceptional:
- Graphic Designers
- Multimedia Artists
- Video Game Designers
- Web Designers
#4. Business & Finance
Business and finance is another career path that is not only rather lucrative but also perfectly suits the INTP personality type.
From analytical thinking to logical reasoning, Architects are naturally endowed with many qualities that can help them build a successful career in business and finance. Thanks to these traits, INTPs also often come up with groundbreaking business ideas, many of which change the world in one way or another.
Google is a great example of this. While virtually everyone knows what it is and how it changed the way we search for and access information, not many people know that its co-founders—Larry Page and Sergey Brin—both belong to the INTP personality type.
So, here are some great job options in business and finance Architects should consider:
- Business Analyst
- Business Consultant
- Creative Director
- Financial Analyst
- Market Researcher
#5. IT & Programming
If you asked INTPs which field they’re working in, most of them would probably answer something along the lines of IT, and it’s not without good reason. After all, technology-related jobs seem like a natural fit for this personality type!
Architects are eager to learn how things work and perhaps even more interested in figuring out how they could be improved. Not only that—they genuinely enjoy creative problem-solving, troubleshooting, and other activities that stimulate them mentally. Needless to say, jobs in IT and programming can satisfy their craving for intellectual stimulation.
Besides that, INTPs are also rather comfortable dealing with complex data and working independently without much supervision, both of which are essential for IT and programming professionals.
Some of the most popular IT and programming jobs for INTPs include:
- Computer Programmer
- Computer Systems Engineer
- Software Developer
- Software Engineer
- Systems Analyst
- UX/UI Designer
Generally speaking, INTPs are drawn to either technical or creative jobs. Ideally, they’d prefer their role to combine both, and this is exactly why architecture is one of the best career paths for INTPs!
Architecture is pretty much a blend of art and science, which might be the reason why INTPs are also known as Architects—unlike most other personality types, they’re often interested in and gifted at both.
For this reason, they’ll likely find it easy to come up with creative designs and gain the knowledge and technical skills required to bring their vision to life.
At the same time, architecture involves plenty of problem-solving, from designing plumbing systems to developing disaster management plans and more. This, coupled with the fact that architecture is constantly evolving, makes this field especially attractive for INTPs.
Here are some different jobs in architecture that INTPs might find interesting and rewarding:
- Design Architect
- Landscape Architect
- Revit Technician
- Urban Designer
While writing may not seem like a popular career option for INTPs, in truth, people with this personality type can make exceptionally great writers.
INTPs are introverted and intuitive, so they tend to be rather introspective and prefer solitary jobs, which makes writing a great choice for them. Their analytical skills and ability to think outside the box often set them up for success in various types of writing jobs that embrace novelty, creativity, and originality.
Still, most often, Architects find themselves working as technical writers, as they usually have great research skills and a gift for explaining complex information in a simple, concise way.
Some jobs that INTPs who dabble in writing should consider include:
- Content Writer
- Grant Writer
- Technical Writer
3 Worst Career Paths INTPs Should Avoid
As a general rule, Architects rarely enjoy jobs that involve lots of social interaction and routine.
So, here are some examples of INTP careers to avoid:
#1. Office Administration
In short, administrative assistant, receptionist, and other similar office jobs aren’t likely to bring much satisfaction to INTPs.
On the contrary, they can lead to stress and frustration—like most introverts, Architects would do anything to avoid picking up the phone, engaging in small talk, and similar behaviors. Also, since these kinds of jobs are rather monotonic, they’d likely get bored by the end of their first day at work, and it certainly doesn’t help that organization isn’t INTPs’ strong suit.
When it comes to construction, there are often two types of jobs: desk jobs and manual labor.
Simply put, it’s not uncommon for INTPs to work in construction-related desk jobs (architect, civil engineer, etc.), but they aren’t likely to work as construction workers, equipment operators, or similar.
However, it’s not because Architects avoid physical labor. While some may enjoy it, the fact of the matter is that INTPs can’t be satisfied with their job if it lacks mental stimulation.
Sales is yet another career path that INTPs might find rather stressful. Not only do they generally dislike fast-paced work environments, but they also usually avoid jobs that involve lots of communication, especially with strangers.
So, if you’re an INTP, do yourself a favor and skip the following positions when scrolling through a job board:
- Account Executive
- Sales Associate
- Sales Consultant
- Sales Manager
- Sales Representative
What Are INTPs Like as Leaders?
As leaders, INTPs are usually flexible, objective, and open-minded. More often than not, they encourage others to openly share their ideas and work independently, thus creating a positive work environment.
Generally speaking, INTPs aren’t fond of the idea of workplace hierarchy. Because of this, they typically treat their subordinates as equals and provide them with as much freedom and flexibility as possible. Although Architects make rather laid-back leaders, they like to focus on work and dislike displays of emotion in the workplace.
While INTPs are great at creating a long-term vision for their team, it’s not uncommon for them to get stuck in the idea-generation phase. As a result, they may need help developing a practical step-by-step plan to get things done.
Also, it’s important to understand that although INTPs can make great leaders, they are typically reluctant to take on leadership roles due to their introverted and individualistic natures. This is especially true for turbulent Architects, as they also tend to struggle with self-doubt.
How INTPs Behave in Teams
Reserved and fiercely independent, INTPs would often much rather work on their own than in a team setting. However, if the team includes highly knowledgeable people who don’t waste their time on small talk, they are usually more than happy to collaborate and engage with their teammates.
Although INTPs tend to be quiet, they often surprise their teammates with innovative ideas, unorthodox solutions to problems, and analytical insights. Oftentimes, they excel at helping the team brainstorm ideas and perfect their vision, yet they can be much less enthusiastic about actually implementing them in practice.
That said, how INTPs behave in teams often depends on their teammates. If other team members respect tradition to the point of rejecting novelty, Architects might feel discouraged from sharing their thoughts and retreat into themselves.
INTP Strengths and Weaknesses at the Workplace
When it comes to work, every personality type has some strong points and some shortcomings that can affect their performance.
So, let’s explore INTP strengths and weaknesses to get a better sense of what Architects are like at work and which career paths suit them best.
INTP Workplace Strengths
The most prominent INTP workplace strengths include:
- Analytical mind. By nature, Architects have great analytical and critical thinking skills that enable them to work with large sets of complex data, easily understand theoretical concepts, and solve problems.
- Progressiveness. Simply put, INTPs prefer novelty over tradition. Not only do they usually come up with original proposals and unconventional solutions to problems, but they also embrace technological advancements as much as their work allows it.
- Independence. Architects have no issue working with little to no supervision, as they tend to be not only individualistic but also self-motivated.
INTP Workplace Weaknesses
And here are some weaknesses INTPs should work on:
- Procrastination. Oftentimes, Architects prioritize projects and activities that they find more interesting, which can cause them to put off more urgent tasks.
- Overthinking. Sometimes, Architects get so caught up in planning their steps and perfecting their vision that they forget to actually take action and get things done. Because of this, they may seem slow and unproductive.
- Emotional detachment. INTPs are quiet and rather unemotional, which can make it difficult for them to network, get along with their colleagues, and navigate other social situations.
10 Best College Majors for INTPs
Now that you know all about INTP careers, there’s one thing left to discuss—top college majors for INTPs.
It goes without saying that you should always choose a college major that’ll help you land your dream job, especially since most INTP-friendly careers require a degree.
That said, if you aren’t sure what major you should pick, here are some options that usually work well for INTPs:
- Business Information Technology
- Computer Programming
- Computer Science
- Environmental Design
- Mathematics and Statistics
- Political Science
And that’s everything you need to know about INTP careers and majors!
Before you go, here’s a quick recap you might find useful:
- INTPs are often drawn to careers that combine science and creativity, such as architecture, computer programming, engineering, and web design.
- Architects should generally avoid career paths that require lots of communication and don’t stimulate them intellectually, such as office administration and sales.
- Although INTPs are highly analytical, original, and independent, their work performance might suffer due to procrastination and overthinking.
INTP Careers FAQ
#1. What is a good career for an INTP?
Computer programmer, biomedical engineer, research scientist, and business analyst are all good careers for an INTP.
Essentially, they perform best at jobs related to their interests, particularly those that give them lots of opportunities to use their analytical thinking and problem-solving skills.
#2. What do INTPs struggle with at work?
At work, INTPs often struggle with perfectionism. Oftentimes, they spend too much time focusing on crystallizing their vision, which can slow down their performance. Also, they might struggle with forming good relationships with their coworkers due to their reserved natures.
#3. What should INTPs study?
While it’s true that INTPs should study majors that will enable them to pursue their desired careers, they should also pick majors they find genuinely interesting. Some great options include architecture, political science, computer programming, and engineering.