Fieldmarshal (role variant)
The Fieldmarshal Rational is one of the 16 role variants of the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, a self-assessed personality questionnaire designed to help people better understand themselves. David Keirsey originally described the fieldmarshal role variant; however, a brief summary of the personality types described by Isabel Myers contributed to its development. Fieldmarshals correlate primarily with the Myers-Briggs type ENTJ. Fieldmarshals make up about 2% of the population.
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Fieldmarshals are decisive, forceful and natural leaders. They have a knack for organizing groups to perform complex tasks. Their talent for contingency planning is a close second to their ability to coordinate, decide, and execute a strategy. Born engineers, they want to break an idea or concept into its most fundamental parts, subject those parts to intense scrutiny, and reassemble the idea before giving it their final approval. Their desire to ensure that an assessment is valid extends to their own work, and they will often seek the opinion of another trusted individual such as an architect or an inventor to refine their view of an issue, regardless of how sure they are.
Fieldmarshals have a strong desire to give structure and direction to groups of people. Of all the role variants, Fieldmarshals are the most likely to see where an organization is headed, and they want to communicate that vision to others. Thus they are more directive in their social exchanges than they are informative. Fieldmarshals often rise to positions of responsibility in work because they tend to be devoted to their jobs and are excellent administrators. Fieldmarshals may not actively seek out leadership responsibilities, but will often volunteer themselves to take charge in situations where leadership is absent or has failed, or where a power vacuum suddenly exists—not because they are particularly interested in power as such, but due to their innate desire to see a given system (be it social, political, workplace, or otherwise) continue to function until a suitable leader can be identified, who, in the mind of the Fieldmarshal, is as good at leadership as at background administration.
Fieldmarshals search more for goals and policy than they do for procedures and regulations. They strive to make their organization more efficient by reducing red tape, task redundancy, and confusion in the workplace. Fieldmarshals take a straightforward and tough-minded attitude toward tasks, approaching them with impartial analysis, and basing their decisions on well thought-out plans, impersonal data, and overall probability of success. They expect others to follow their vision, and they are willing to remove stumbling blocks that prevent a given system (human or otherwise) from being fully productive. For fieldmarshals, there must be a goal-directed reason for executing any plan. People’s emotions are generally considered secondary to raw data in any decision-making process.
Fieldmarshals are impatient with ineffectiveness, inefficiency, and the repetition of errors. If an established procedure can be demonstrated to be ineffective at accomplishing a certain goal, they will abandon the procedure. Fieldmarshals keep long-term and short-term objectives in mind while striving to turn their organizations into smooth-functioning, empirically stable systems.
For illustrative purposes, Keirsey and his son, David M. Keirsey, have identified well-known individuals whose behavior is consistent with a specific type. Unless otherwise noted, the categorization of the individuals below, whether living or dead, as fieldmarshals, is a matter of opinion rather than the result of actual testing of the named individual.
- Napoleon Bonaparte
- Julius Caesar
- George C. Marshall
- Golda Meir
- Carl Sagan
- Edward Teller
- Margaret Thatcher