Enneagram Type 5: The Sage

Let's dive deeper into Type 5 on the Enneagram, the Sage!

Taylor Nash avatar
Written by Taylor Nash
Updated over a week ago

When you discuss Enneagram types at work, you open up the possibility for empathy, compassion, and understanding. A team that works well together performs better, improves communication, and enjoys more purpose-filled work.

Type 5: The Sage

Motivated by the need to know and understand everything, to be self-sufficient, and to avoid looking uninformed. Kind, perceptive, open-minded, self-sufficient, and trustworthy in relationships. Has strong analytical skills and is good at problem-solving. Often prefers to work alone and is an independent thinker. Naturally open and receptive to new facts and impressions, the discovery of new ideas, research, and innovations - particularly the provocative, surprising, unconventional, and profound. Is a good listener, pays close attention, and can help others to perceive the truth more soberly and objectively.

They are thoughtful, cerebral types who see and interpret the world through information. Fives are motivated by a desire to be competent. They strive to be capable in all aspects and fear looking uninformed.

Fives are independent thinkers and typically enjoy working alone to process and have time to problem-solve. They are good listeners, observant, and help others understand the truth more soberly and objectively.

Fives are kind, perceptive, open-minded, self-sufficient, and trustworthy to teammates. They have strong analytical skills and are good at problem-solving. Fives can be very helpful when teams need objectivity, clarification, or exploration of new ideas. They are naturally open and receptive to new facts and impressions, discovering new ideas, research, and innovations - particularly those that are provocative, surprising, unconventional, and profound.


  • 4: The Originalist: The Four wing enables a greater degree of creativity and empathy, along with a wider range of emotions - from melancholy to intimacy with loved ones. On the downside, it can foster an inward focus and inability to perceive the needs of others.

  • 6: The Loyalist: The Six wing produces a fierce loyalty and commitment to family and friends that helps in building deep relationships and relational networks. On the downside, it can produce fear, anxiety, and unhealthy skepticism - particularly towards authority.


  • 8: The Challenger: Becomes more confident, assertive, outspoken, and spontaneous by moving toward the positive qualities of Eights. Exudes energy, and harnesses that energy to stay focused and achieve goals. Less “trapped in the mind” and more “present in the body.” When Fives feel secure, they will exude more energy and action, take the initiative, and be decisive.


  • 7: The Enthusiast: Can become scattered, disorganized, and distracted by moving toward the negative qualities of Sevens. Often will neglect the needs of others and focus solely on selfish needs for autonomy, and solitude. May become standoffish, short-sighted, and condescending. Stress can cause Fives to be easily distracted and disorganized. It can also cause them to detach themselves from the team.

Communication Style

Brief, professional, objective, and reserved. Fives rely on research, insight, and knowledge before communicating and, therefore, may need time to share the next steps or ideas. This type appreciates the patience and willingness to listen to new perspectives while conversing.

Your work habits and communication strategies depend primarily on fear and internal motivations. When you identify these in yourself and others, you will have better self-awareness and a heightened appreciation for teamwork.

Want to learn more? Check out these articles:
What is the Enneagram?
Head Triad: Types, 5, 6, and 7
My Assessments

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