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In my current occupation i am a shift supervisor at a particularly popular gas station restaurant. I am pretty good at my job as far as getting my work done and motivating myself. My employees and supervisors really enjoy working with me because of my warm personality and my willingness to help others. My regular customers on more than one occasion say they prefer dealing with me than with some of my co-workers. Because of my success its been posed to me to be promoted again to being an assistant manager [ move to salary instead of hourly wages, more responsibility and a stronger need to be a "leader"]. Now i would really like to have the better pay and i thoroughly enjoy my job despite the ups and downs it has. But i am conflicted because i really don't see myself as a leader. I can't bring myself to be the kind of person that gives commands and pushes people to do their jobs in any other way but asking. I dislike being a disciplinary because i don't like confrontation and i don't like getting people in trouble.

if you have been in a similar position how did you handle it?
how did you bring yourself to a point where you could do the "hard parts"?
 

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The only real problem I have with leadership is any possible public relations that comes with it - mainly speaking with large groups of people. I wouldn't say I'm a natural leader but I think I could do an OK job at managing a group of people and resources, and despite my minor shyness I would like to think that I could interact with people well. This is hypothetical so I can't offer any real advice - just good luck in what you choose to do.
 

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Your right to believe this could make a significant change to your workplace relationships. I think it's important to differentiate leadership roles from management roles; this is a management role. Getting 360* feedback on your approaches or ways to defend your self-image whilst doing the 'hard stuff' will be key to helping you through the learning curve (less trial by fire), learn how to ask for honest feedback from subordinates and get enough time discuss your issues with the Manager.
 

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I think INFP's make great leaders and typically have a knack for setting a vision and understanding all of the moving parts. When it comes to management . . . management is more about managing the "moment" e.g. time, resources & money. This is why you see so many STJ's in management, it part of their reoccurring pattern of thoughts and behavior (i.e. more natural). When managing people you have to realize that it's not about your personal connection with the individual "as much" as it is about productivity and running the business. Management is typically a prerequisite to leadership in an organization so you'll have be proficient managing in order to ever have a chance to lead a company. *** I say all of this because a lot of INFP's I know (5 or so) don't like to manage people and I personally didn't either however, you have to manage effectively (e.g. like an STJ) to ever get into leadership . . . which I think a healthy INFP can excel. I think most INFPs drop out of management or never attempt it because it is challenging and not real natural, stick with it and learn from the STJs around you how best to do it while adding in the more emotional intelligent side that INFP's bring to a management team. Stick with it but be regimented and focus less on relationships and more on the bottom line and you'll do great. INFPs are incredibly smart and very quick learners. Good luck!
 
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@Strat made great points. I am in a management position (second level supervisor) and most of my counterparts are XSTJs. There are aspects of the job I love -- the strategic planning, encouraging innovation, giving kudos and appreciation -- but there are more aspects I hate (holding people accountable when they don't live up to expectations, attending umpteen meetings, & enforcing policies I myself think are stupid and counterproductive). As a fish out of water INFP in an XSTJ culture, my management style is and always has been different than everyone else's, and while some good has come out of it, it has been exhausting to have to defend myself/my approach over the years. Good things: I have definitely developed my E, S, T & J skills -- especially the T & J -- I have developed a thick skin to not let my feelings get hurt when criticized, and not let my feelings get in the way of holding people accountable (well, it kills me inside, but I can do it), and I have taught my colleagues that there are other considerations besides the bottom line or what is most rational (like, have you actually considered how this will affect the people?).

I will confess, it never is easy for me to discipline people, but I try to do so in a way that works with my style -- i.e., I do not yell, belittle, or accuse. I try to be honest yet tactful. It sucks but you can do it. If your job is going to involve a lot of disciplinary actions, I'd probably tell you to not do it as it will really not be something you will feel good about, even when it's absolutely necessary. If you get a chance to hire your own people, it may help a lot and hopefully you won't have too many folks you can't stand. Just remember, the world is FULL of XSTJs and XSTPs, so most of the world is going to act and see the world very differently than you do.

After nearly 10 years in a supervisory/management job, I can definitely say I've learned and have grown a ton both emotionally and professionally; yet it certainly has taken a toll on me. I'm much tougher now than I used to be; close friends and family have noticed it and for the most part they don't like it. I don't like it either. I intend to have a second career within a few years where I will have my own business (sole proprietor, no employees!) doing work that is more aligned with my values.

I predict if you take the promotion you will learn and grow and ton, and probably hate life on many days. If you are up for that kind of challenge, go for it!
 

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Belle Chat;4188157 I will confess said:
Ah so refreshing to hear . . . MBTI probably means more to an INFP than any other type, specifically for the reasons you stated. In a world of xSTJ's and xSTP's we can be so lost. I always saw the pattern, I typically was only really understood by leadership (i.e. other N's) and management (STJ's) were fond of my big picture ideas and wanting to change everything. Within 2 years of reading Gifts Differing and Type Talk at Work and understanding MBTI I left my employer and started my own business. I am on year 3 of independent consulting, nearly tripling my previous salary in IT. My advice to any "N" working in a strong "S" environment is to "Run", you have zero chance of moving up (i.e. IMHO they have a hiring bias for like minds). Find a job that requires either creativity or big picture skills. My other thought on this subject is to out Educate your competition, go/stay in school and get every certification your field offers. This, over time, will get you into a leadership or upper management position at least in which "I believe" INFP's can be great. INFP's get and enjoy connecting the dots and can be true visionaries. I agree with Belle Chat, Management isn't much fun but it can be done, but long term get your education and shoot for being on the board of directors, not a front line supervisor.
 
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You could always try it out, as mentioned above it will probably be quite challenging and a steep learning curve but typically it gets us INFPS out of our comfort zone and there can be real personal growth along the way. Be wary of burn out though. You could try it for 2-3 years, save some cash, and then if it is starting to suck then go back to your old job or move sideways elsewhere with that added experience. Good luck whatever you decide.
 

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I think you will do fine. Do not see it as "discipline" than it is to be "helpful" and corrective in someone's behaviour ? We cannot change the core being of someone, but we can indeed utilise someone's potential in a better way. Because we are harmonisers, we can predict and pre-empt something from happening, as a situation unfolds. So therefore, you need to direct, and push gently the situation away when it occurs in real time. You have to have a rough idea of what is going on, that big picture thing, which we are so great at.

It's funny that people say that INFP can connect the "dots". I often use this as my "checkpoints" to see if I have hit my target. I basically have a social dynamic map of events in my mind with regards to the restaurant front of house side. I got them down to a tee with time managements added too. So if any step or stages deviate from this, then you need to step in and get involved to get it back on track to that mind map that you have in place.

Plus because it is a restaurant, and you see people's faces with your Ne, and their happiness level, you can often tell when something needs to happen. If a table looks unhappy, then you can walk over and ask what is wrong, then quickly put a strategy into place. Your job as supervisor really is to step in when priorities of events need adjusting.

Never directly embarrass your staff in front of the customers. NEVER. It is demeaning. Always, let them cool down first behind the scene and then have team meetings or one to one meeting to understand and to engage their take on something, or a situation. We are healers. Sometimes you do not need to even discipline a person asap. They know it themselves any way. Let them get over the negativities and then do some mentoring afterwards, tell them your preference of how they need to do something and then forget it and not dwell. For you, you must NOT dwell. Cos if you do, then this will bring you down. Do not do that. If something bad happened, it's been dealt with, then onwards and upwards to be happier again.

Always deal with the troubles yourself directly and soothe a situation first.
I always see a restaurant as an extension of my own say dinner party. How best can I serve them and make them enjoy themselves and feel comfortable, and that I have to play hostess and show humility too. At the end of the day, if the restaurants do well, then I do well too. It is a natural flow of event. If there is anything which adds a bit of fun to a place, then champion this ! :)

I always thought that as an INFP, our leadership style is by being a role model.
Btw, I've come from a long line of family restaurateurs, done the PR side for them, and also seen the dynamic of things. I've worked from front of house to the kitchen, so I know it well. If you need any more information on something particular, then please do not hesitate to PM me privately ?

if you have been in a similar position how did you handle it?
how did you bring yourself to a point where you could do the "hard parts"?
- Yes, plenty of times. Lol. I've challenged my own siblings even though I am not the owner, cos I always put "customer is king". (And therefore they pay your salary too...) I also is kind of coming round to the believe of "People must eat well, and have a quality of life, so why should I make their lives miserable when they are eating ?" Plus, I like seeing people happy and enjoying family times with their loved ones sharing, eating in peaceful environments. So I hope to get them this.

- I never had to do the hard parts in the way that you described it. I always used my own way, which is more of a persuasive style, but you have to have conviction in your own believe though. The way you described it is more or less like a very strict ENTJ. In actual REALITY of the real world, you will see difference nuances etc or people and of behaviours. Do not think that everyone is as you think it is... and perception is a funny thing, you can change it. Whoever originally wrote MBTI or if you are from the US, there is an actual literal "direct" and "factual" frankness, but if you play your card right, and admit to faults which were not even yours, and put forth a more moral way of leadership, then this will also gain you actual popularities as well. Always look after your staff in terms of salaries, pay and advancements etc. Change shifts so that people can indeed have a balance of life as well and is not agitated etc. If you handle these aspects well, then you are not likely to have any issues with the staff, and they too can have a more quality of life at home too. INFPs are known to be good candidates in HR. So... think about the above, cos you are already assessing their welfares, which normally at this supervisory level, most do not care. If you care, others will care too, and give you their loyalties.
 
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