Type A Personality & Traits vs Type B Personality

Certain personality types are better suited for business world than others. Very often you’ll see bipolar, narcissistic or antisocial personalities leading very successful businesses, due to creativity, risk taking behavior & just having the right demeanor for the task. Let’s concentrate on Type A personality & Type B personality & related traits that can influence one’s achievements in business or corporate world.

Type A personality is associated with time urgency, aggressiveness, hostility and competitiveness; Type B personality in contrast is the one low on these traits. Generally most of people fall somewhere in between the 2 types, some leaning more towards one type, than the other.

Type A and Type B personality theory was first published in the 1950’s by Meyer Freidman & Rosenman. People with Type A personalities are often described as aggressive , ambitious, controlling , business-like, highly competitive, time-conscious, impatient, preoccupied with status, workaholic, hostile, tightly-wound. These types often try to do more than one thing at a time, they lack patience & often finish sentences for others in discussions. Modern technology helps significantly for Type A personalities to multitask. They generally dislike the perceived threat from the environment. The combination of characteristics of aggressiveness, hostility, time urgency, and competitiveness is called the Type A personality. Freidman’s & Rosenman’s researches found that the previously mentioned set of personality traits was frequently associated with coronary heart disease, even when genetic factors, diet, and regular exercising are under control. Many athletes considered to have the personality Type A, however, due to their perfect exercise regime, they seem to have less heart problems. The other end of the spectrum, or what some like to call an easy going personality, is called Type B personality.


There is a debate what exactly is the main reason causing the heart disease. Theories include:

  • the set of traits is the direct contributor
  • mainly due to higher arousal levels, which are noticeable even during rest times
  • feeling of time urgency is the cause that leads to chronic higher levels of arousal
  • negative affectivity (anger, hostility, depression)


So, the 4 Traits of the Type A Personality Are:

  • Free Floating Hostility:

Individuals with Type A personality are often known to have a short fuse, inability to control their temper and free floating hostility is one of the predominant traits in these individuals. They are impatient & tend to get irritated if things don’t go exactly as they had planned. Little issues can upset them. It is often advised to take stress management classes for the sake of their own physical well-being.

  • Aggressiveness:

Individuals with this type of personality also tend to be excessively aggressive.  Aggressive individuals like to take charge, are comfortable with having authority, power & responsibility, they are highly goal-oriented, tend to do what is takes to get the job done. They like to take action & often like to participate in competitive sports.

  • Time Urgency:

A lot of importance is given to time & deadlines. Even minor things like waiting in line or taking longer than little to get their point across can irritate these individuals. They are of the opinion that every second is valuable & wasting their time is the last thing they want to do. They may interrupt the person speaking & finish it for them just to make it faster. The impatience is usually evident in their demeanor & they generally don’t try to hide it.

  • Competitiveness:

People with Type A personality are highly competitive. They have clear drive for success, victory, high ambitions and goal oriented personality, which often makes them successful in their careers Competitiveness inflicts a lot of stress, which in turn contributes to health problems.


While the Type A personality is often looked at as undesirable, the higher arousal levels & time urgency can lead to better performance. Type A personalities generally have higher need for achievements and their behavior pattern is often associated with the success of an entrepreneur.