ISTP Careers (A comprehensive guide)

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In this brief guide, we will look at some ISTP careers, as well as some ISTP careers to avoid. We will also look at other information about ISTP personality and careers.

ISTP Careers

ISTP careers should involve some amount of practical approach and work with their hands, and someone of the best ISTP careers are:

  • Carpenter
  • Chef
  • Food Writer
  • Photographer
  • Artist
  • Musician
  • Graphic Designer
  • Fashion Designer
  • Tailor
  • Sculptor 
  • Engineer
  • Farmer or Rancher
  • Exercise Physiologist

ISTP careers may need to involve a certain degree of autonomy and alone time for the person, because ISTP personalities tend to learn much better on their own, and their true introverted tendencies keep them from being too involved with other people.

An ISTP career may be speckled by their desire to achieve and utilize their carefully attained technical expertise because these individuals are great at mastering and manipulating tools and they have a very tactile approach to learning in general.

The technical leanings of an ISTP personality often find these people in careers that involve a lot of working with their hands, like being an engineer or a carpenter, and they may find that they are very comfortable with any kind of tools, like the traditional hammers and saws, or the more modern tools of business or technology.

This liking for the practical and tactile things does not mean that the ISTP does not like to think or work with their minds at all, and they greatly value efficiency and logic so the ISTP career needs to involve a great deal of flexibility in their work. 

An ISTP may also prefer a job which involves practical efficiency and if they can’t get that, they will likely attain some hobbies that allow them to do this, just think of Ron Swanson from Parks and Recreation, who is a typical ISTP character; he is in an office job working for a government system he does not approve of, but he has plenty of hobbies that he enjoys on the side to make him happy and keep him satisfied.

The ISTP career also needs to be action-oriented but not be too overly burdened by rules, because they don’t like conformity at all, and they will balk at monotony just as easily.

Another feature of ISTP careers that may not make them too happy is over-involvement of procedure, or bureaucracy, which may make them wither away on the inside so they quietly approach burnout, or it may make them constantly rebel against the powers that be, which may make them quite disgruntled workers.

If you’re facing this, it may be a good idea to seek the help of a therapist or other mental health professional. You can find a therapist at BetterHelp who can help you learn how to cope and address it.

ISTP careers may be perfect when they involve tasks with a tangible result, because these individuals truly enjoy seeing and feeling the fruits of their labor, and they may also typically feel most satisfied when they have built something concrete and when they can see how it works and how it affects things around it, and in addition to this the ISTP may also enjoy troubleshooting with these things that they have built.

ISTP may also often look for careers that allow them to apply their skills to solve practical problems or ones that allow them to engage in some physical activity, often with an aspect of risk or danger, and they will enormously dislike being stuck at a desk. 

A more comprehensive list of ISTP careers based on everything discussed above is as follows:

  • Fashion Designer
  • Tailor
  • Sculptor 
  • Engineer
  • Farmer or Rancher
  • Athletic Trainer
  • Dental Hygienist
  • ER Physician
  • Chef
  • Photographer
  • Jeweler
  • Securities Analyst
  • Purchasing Agent
  • Financial Manager
  • Cost Estimator
  • Economist
  • Budget Analyst
  • Financial Planner
  • Paralegal
  • Criminalist
  • Biologist
  • Ship and Boat Captain
  • Software Developer
  • Systems Analyst
  • Database Administrator
  • Software Tester
  • Property Manager
  • Office Manager
  • Flight Engineer
  • Civil Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Air Traffic Controller
  • Machinist
  • Geologist
  • Police Officer
  • Firefighter
  • Private Investigator
  • Military Officer
  • Intelligence Agent
  • Airline Pilot

ISTP in the Workplace

An ISTP in the workplace may be someone that is usually quiet but can be rather talented with whatever they have chosen to do, like when they have chosen to be a firefighter they will be very passionate about it, and even though they may not be too social, they may still be very dedicated to their work.

ISTPs will also bring efficient energy to the team they work with despite their introverted tendencies, and they usually take practical action where they see the need, and the ISTP can also be rational at the same time, and even though they don’t like to be in positions that involve a lot of analysis, they will still do it when it is necessary, but they may take the most direct route and do things that tackle the problem straight away.

However, in the workplace as much as in their life, the ISTP personality may not care much for abstract discussion, and they may neglect the niceties of working with others, which may sometimes make them appear gruff or even rude, but they can be very sweet and fun when they are engaging with someone about something they care about.

Even though ISTPs are introverted and may not seek leadership positions on purpose, they also have a strong action orientation, and their understanding of tasks is often more kinetic than verbal, which means that as a leader they might want the same from the people under them.

They are also quite likely to delegate and make their workers independent and they will not be much for running a very tight ship, and they will likely trust the workers quite a lot to do well.

ISTP Careers to Avoid

ISTP Careers to avoid will include careers that have too much analysis or repetitive data to tackle, or something that involves too much interaction with other people.

Some of the major ISTP careers to avoid are as follows:

  • Occupational Therapist
  • Family Physician
  • Pediatrician
  • Veterinary Technician
  • Craft Artist
  • Reporter
  • Journalist
  • Public Health Nurse
  • Dentist
  • Actor
  • Urban Planner
  • Market Researcher
  • Clergy
  • Social Worker
  • Preschool Teacher
  • Special Education Teacher
  • Social Service Director
  • Receptionist

ISTP Famous People

Given below are some of the best ISTP famous people, many of whom you might recognize.

  • Micheal Jordan
  • Tom Cruise
  • Clint Eastwood
  • Scarlett Johansson
  • Bruce Lee
  • Katherine Hepburn
  • Charles Bronson
  • Frank Zappa
  • Avril Lavigne
  • James Dean
  • Burt Reynolds
  • John Malkovich
  • Keith Richards
  • Judy Finnigan
  • Alan Shephard
  • Antony Worrall Thompson
  • Chuck Yeager
  • Robin Cook
  • Jack Dorsey
  • Demi Moore
  • Anna Kendrick
  • Diogenes the “Dog”
  • Zachary Taylor 

ISTP Careers: Reddit User Experiences

Here are some of the best accounts of ISTP Reddit users regarding what they think were great and worst career choices and what they think an ISTP career should be like:

“IT + art = Computer graphics.”

“I got bored in school, joined the military. I got bored in the military, now I sail tall ships.”

“Flipped through the course and careers guide. Orthoptics started with the letter O and I thought that was an odd name. It also had a cool photo. (Yeh I’m a bit YOLO like that)

15 years after I graduated and I’m still loving my job coz it appeals to my ISTP nature.

It’s like being a detective and working out the technicalities and mechanics of people’s eye problems, running through tests and using reasoning to sift through important & unimportant info. It’s fast paced and I get a new patient every 10-15 minutes so I live in the here-and-now.

My boss realised early on that I enjoy fixing equipment so I save the practice $$$ from having to call in technicians (I later realised that getting high on fixing things is also an ISTP thing)

So consider working in Allied Health. Also good job prospects and stability”

“Did humanities in high school but turned out to be terrible at it. Did landscape architecture and environmental planning at bachelor’s because I thought it was the perfect mix between scientific field and creativity, turned out the creative part wasn’t creative at all and you had to follow dumb, rigid standards imposed by the professors, got frustrated and decided to switch again. Now I’m currently following a master’s in forestry and environmental sciences and I’m really enjoying it, I’m good at math and sciences and therefore don’t really have any problem but I miss doing something creative, but I can still create art on my own so that’s fine

I didn’t really have much consistency academically speaking, my only common threads were my love for nature, the desire to work in the open field and in a flexible environment and the awareness that I’m pretty much terrible at anything that isn’t scientific or creative, but I don’t really have a clear aim other than that in my mind. I pretty much go where I feel I want to in that moment, confident that things will work out on their own; probably after this master’s, if I decide to keep studying, it will be something different. I go by what I want to do in that moment, if someone doesn’t work for me, then there’s no point being stuck on it”


In this brief guide, we looked at some ISTP careers, as well as some ISTP careers to avoid. We also looked at other information about ISTP personality and careers.

ISTP personality is known for their tendency to be good with their hands and they have a practical approach to both learning as well as work, which makes them very skilled workers in careers that make use of this trait adequately.

If you have any questions or comments about ISTP careers, please feel free to reach out to us at any time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): ISTP Careers

What are good Istp jobs?

Some good ISTP jobs may be:

Building Inspector.
Commercial Designer.
Landscape Architect.
Farmer or Rancher.

What does Istp mean?

ISTP means Introvert, Sensing, Thinking, Perceiving and this personality type represents an individual’s preferences in these four function dimensions and this personality type is given by Jung’s and Briggs Myers’ theories of personality type.

Who Should an Istp marry?

An ISTP should marry someone like an ESTJ, because these individuals tend to have a good relationship with people who have the dominant function of extraverted thinking, because ISTP has a dominant function of introverted thinking.

ISTP can also marry someone like an ENTJ, because these individuals also tend to have the same extraverted thinking function that ESTJ has.

Are Istp lazy?

No, ISTP are not lazy, but they sometimes get accused of being so because they have a tendency to defy rules and convention, they are introverted, and they often like to have a practical approach to things, which means that they may reject the commonly applied methods of learning and doing things that are primarily theoretical in nature.

Many ISTPs may also be called lazy because people may feel that they are always taking shortcuts in life, which is not necessarily true because these individuals tend to be quite hardworking when they are working on something they enjoy.


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