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Off topic: Doing a study on personality types.
Thread poster: Doreen Stacey

Doreen Stacey
United States
Jul 1, 2014

Me and my colleague were discussing if people who do translating (more specifically medical but can be a general discussion) are of the same personality type or at least similar. We both took the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator through CPP at https://www.cpp.com/products/mbti/index.aspx. I got ENTJ while she got ENTP...very similar so while we are about to embark on a search to find someone to join our team (well our manager is) we were told to expect to be asked for our input so I'm trying to see if what our discussion was about is true. If you don't mind please take the test (unless you already know your type) and share.

Thanks!


 

Mark
Local time: 14:45
Italian to English
Interpreting or translating? Jul 2, 2014

Doreen Stacey wrote:

if people who do translating (more specifically medical but can be a general discussion) are of the same personality type or at least similar.
I did those tests ages ago and came out an I(S/N)TJ. I don't think of translators as Extroverts, though there's no reason for them not to be extroverted I suppose, whereas I think I'd probably die if I had to interpret...

You have to be strong on Thinking, don't you? Though Feeling is an advantage for both translating and interpreting, I'm sure.

I wouldn't know how to choose between Judging and Perceiving, nor between Sensing and iNtuition... I expect that's where there'd be the most variety.

[Edited at 2014-07-02 07:38 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-07-02 07:43 GMT]


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 14:45
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
Well actually... Jul 2, 2014

It goes without saying that different lines of business attract different personalities.

But I don't feel like taking your test here, since I know nothing about you and it's far from clear what you are going to do with it. For all I know you might just be trying to get hold of more info about me so you can bombard me with "appropriate" advertising. And I'm not about to apply for a job as a member of your team either so I fail to see how it can help.

Just sayin'.


 

2dotranslations
Indonesia
Indonesian to German
+ ...
Different Types Excel in Different Professions Jul 3, 2014

Hi,
I would argue that the best translators (not interpreters) are INTF and INFJ. But I'm open for other perpectives. Here's my reasoning:

I = Introversion (rather than E=Extraversion)
Introverts have the ability to concentrate for longer periods of time. Something that is required when you work with documents for hours and hours, trying to do the translation. Writing, editing, proofreading would also fall into the same category.

N = iNtuitive (rather than S=Sensing)
iNtuition is the INTFs / INFJs most dominant function. These people live in their heads, basically. They have unlimited imaginations/creativity. This of course is useful when working in the verbal realm, when you're trying to find just the right expression in the target language. INFJs, for example, care a whole lot about choosing the right words. Of course, this can become counterprofuctive, in that the work is never finalized.

J = Judging (rather than perceiving)
Judging types are those that are goal-oriented or result oriented and those who like to plan. Judging types must come to closure when working or living their daily lives. They do not like loose ends. This is beneficial when dealing with deadlines. Sometimes, it's just important to finish a paragraph or page. But overall quick decision making is also when choosing the best words. Another judging benefit is planning ahead, so that working on long documents is managed well.

T or F
Thinking in INTJs / Feeling in INFJs
Thinkers prefer to occupy themselves with inanimate matters, while Feelers prefer tend to occupy themselves with animate matters/people. In the translation business you have to deal with both. Perhaps Thinkers prefer to translate science / medical / legal topics, whereas Feelers prefer working on texts that are about people, such as biographies (only an example). But this depends a lot on the person.

This isn't to say that other types should not enter the translation business. INFPs/INTPs/ISTJ/ISFJ would do well too. It strongly depends on how "literary" they were raised and educated. As for interpreting, ENTJ/ENFJ would perhaps feel more natural doing consecutive interpretation in front of a large audience.

Feel free to ask me about what I wrote above.


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:45
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
INTJ Jul 4, 2014

I got INTJ (no E), and consider myself to be a reasonably good translator (I do not do interpreting).

Interesting topic!


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:45
Member (2008)
Italian to English
I don't fit Jul 4, 2014

I have the kind of personality that refuses to be categorised.

Now tell me what type I am.

icon_smile.gif


 

Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 14:45
English to German
+ ...
Tom, Jul 4, 2014

you are the non-categorizable type.

 

Amel Abdullah  Identity Verified
Jordan
Arabic to English
+ ...
INFJ Jul 4, 2014

I took the test a while back and got the result INFJ (I'm a freelance writer and translator, not an interpreter). On my blog, I explained how an informal survey showed that INFJs only make up 1 to 3 percent of the general population, while nearly 25 percent of writers identify as INFJs:

http://marketsforwriters.blogspot.com/2013/05/rejection-therapy-for-writers.html

Other introverted types, particularly INTJs and INFPs, are also over-represented among writers. I imagine the same is also true of freelance translators.

As 2dotranslations points out above, introverts have many of the qualities that allow them to excel at freelance translation. In my article, however, I also speculate that introverts and creative types might also have more difficulty with the business side of freelancing, particularly when it comes to negotiating pay, contracts, etc. It's important to pay attention to these aspects of freelancing if you want to get ahead, and knowing what your "type" is can help you identify potential strengths as well as weaknesses in various areas. Writers in particular are notorious for giving away and devaluing their work, and I also see these tendencies amongst translators who view translation as an art rather than a business.


 

Melanie Meyer  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:45
Member (2010)
English to German
+ ...
INFJ Jul 4, 2014

2dotranslations wrote:

I = Introversion (rather than E=Extraversion)
Introverts have the ability to concentrate for longer periods of time. Something that is required when you work with documents for hours and hours, trying to do the translation. Writing, editing, proofreading would also fall into the same category.

N = iNtuitive (rather than S=Sensing)
iNtuition is the INTFs / INFJs most dominant function. These people live in their heads, basically. They have unlimited imaginations/creativity. This of course is useful when working in the verbal realm, when you're trying to find just the right expression in the target language. INFJs, for example, care a whole lot about choosing the right words. Of course, this can become counterprofuctive, in that the work is never finalized.

J = Judging (rather than perceiving)
Judging types are those that are goal-oriented or result oriented and those who like to plan. Judging types must come to closure when working or living their daily lives. They do not like loose ends. This is beneficial when dealing with deadlines. Sometimes, it's just important to finish a paragraph or page. But overall quick decision making is also when choosing the best words. Another judging benefit is planning ahead, so that working on long documents is managed well.

T or F
Thinking in INTJs / Feeling in INFJs
Thinkers prefer to occupy themselves with inanimate matters, while Feelers prefer tend to occupy themselves with animate matters/people. In the translation business you have to deal with both. Perhaps Thinkers prefer to translate science / medical / legal topics, whereas Feelers prefer working on texts that are about people, such as biographies (only an example). But this depends a lot on the person.




Interesting – I took this test years ago and got INFJ.


 

Maxi Schwarz
Local time: 07:45
German to English
+ ...
about the test Jul 5, 2014

I read the following article on the test, and it confirmed the skepticism I have always felt about it. It's can be fun if you don't take it seriously.

http://www.theguardian.com/science/brain-flapping/2013/mar/19/myers-briggs-test-unscientific


 

Doreen Stacey
United States
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you all for your input Jul 8, 2014

The outcome is interesting and quite awesome because I didn't go into detail about my results which were only slightly E over I but to see everyone say they are Introverts is what I expected. Thank you all so much for your participation. I will go tell my colleague that we now have another point on our side (our manager likes the personality type stuff) so I think this one might just really help our case.

I think it's funny to say you aren't participating Texte Style because you don't know anything about me and it's far from clear what I'm going to do with the information also that you aren't about to apply for a job as a member of your team either so I fail to see how it can help....
#1 Maybe you should reread my op slowly and carefully and if you aren't comfortable with it move along
#2 judging by your response you are they type we are trying to avoid having join our team


 


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