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Scope Creep

Scope Creep

By Donna Dunning

Donna DunningWatch out for scope creep.

This curious way of responding to information can attack any person who prefers Intuition.

As the name implies, scope creep sneaks up on you. Perhaps you are looking online for a specific piece of information and suddenly, 10 clicks later you are exploring something completely different. But wait you say, there is a connection… actually, you can make connections between pretty much anything.

Scope creep can affect anyone, but is often experienced by those who have a dominant function of Intuition (INTJs, INFJs, ENFPs, and ENTPs).

NPs can experience scope creep as an exciting journey to who knows where. They can use it either as a pleasant distraction or a reason to defer and continue to explore … wait a minute; we better check this out first before deciding.

Scope creep can be especially dangerous when trying to get something completed. It was a challenge for me (ENFP) when writing papers in school. I didn’t want to “settle” on one topic and spent a lot of time exploring all kinds of interesting tangential ideas…. Interesting, but it didn’t help me get my paper done.

NJs on the other hand, may find scope creep a bit of a conundrum. They usually are driven to get something accomplished, but also want to make sure they have researched and explored a topic thoroughly. This tension, especially for INJs can make it difficult to start, as they like to learn and integrate as many ideas as possible before taking action.

What can you do to control scope creep?

Use your Thinking or Feeling function to give you clues as to when you need to stop exploring and start acting.

If you prefer Feeling, choose and focus on ideas that are valuable to the people around you. Recognize that all the ideas in the world won’t do anyone any good unless you apply them.

If you prefer Thinking, choose and focus on the most logical ideas for improvement that will make things work most effectively. Hone your ideas by analyzing and critiquing them.

Do you experience scope creep? What does it look like for you?


Introduction to Type and Learning can help you understand your style of information gathering.

If you live in the USA you can get a Kindle version from Amazon.

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 13th, 2014 at 8:25 am and is filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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