Boris Johnson the ENTP vs ESTP debate

Our Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, (or to use his full name, ‘Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson’) has recently resigned and he was both an interesting and engaging character but also someone who divided opinion, ‘Marmite,’ many people called him. So, what can we learn about Boris from looking at his personality type?


Well, firstly that, like in so many other respects, there is divided opinion about just what personality type he is. Many sites conclude he is an ENTP whilst others, in the minority, but with whom we agree, see him as an ESTP. So, let’s start by points of agreement, (unlike the way an ENTP or ESTP would begin!) Boris, it is agreed upon, is an E*TP, and so therefore fast-moving, flexible, engaging and at times a bit of a showman. He loves a good argument, (he would call this a ‘debate’ or ‘discussion,’ or even ‘chat’). Both ENTP and `ESTP are friendly and good company, like to entertain, happy to be at the centre, (provided of course it remains interesting).


In the UK Journal, ‘The Conversation,’ psychologist Steve Taylor says: “Johnson is often accused of dishonesty, however, it may not be so much that he intentionally lies, but that he doesn’t have a fixed notion of truth,” well isn’t that the same for all of us, we can believe something to be true, even if it is not, it’s not like there’s a universal standard of truth, to which everyone agrees and signs up, or else why is there a need for debate and discussion. It’s like historical studies, they are all subjective analysis and interpretations of the facts. For example, people often assert that World War 2 began on September 1st, 1939. Really? The world woke up that morning and decided to go to war? Or did it start with Hitler’s invasion of Poland, or Hitler rearming the Rhineland in 1936, or him coming to power in 1933, or the signing of the country strangling Treaty of Versailles in 1919, isolating the Junker Class and creating the hedonistic Weimar Republic? So, when did WW2 start?


So, back to our comparison and where do the types diverge, and how do we know? Both the ENTP and ESTP have low boredom thresholds, but the ESTP can be forensic, for the moment that it matters and that is to solve a problem right here, right now. ENTPs tend to be more radical, ideas-oriented focused on future possibilities, beginning with the end in mind. As we can see with Boris’s policy shifts, and a reason why we think he is an ESTP, he is more action-oriented, present-focused on practicalities, more ‘start right now, in fact we should have started yesterday,’ in approach. An ENTP will tend to take a long-term view, whilst ESTPs, like Boris, oh and Winston Churchill and Donald Trump, want to jump in now and ‘do stuff.’ ENTPs are reflective, want to see how it could all fit together, ESTPs are less reflective, preferring to get on and do rather than think about it as too much thinking can waste time when something can be done.


ENTPs and ESTPs have so much in common but there are crucial differences, as we have seen. Often, Boris is seen as an ENTP as he is a “rule-breaker,” but both types can be such, if it helps get them to where they need to be. Boris, like most ESTPs, lives ‘in the moment’, make their statements in the moment, make their decisions in the moment, without thinking through, or even caring about, the future consequences. That is the final reason why we think Boris is an ESTP.

Posted 1 month ago by Lee
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