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Ways in which appreciating differences in personality type can help

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Appreciating differences

Some people worry that Personality Type 'tools' put them in a ‘box’.

I like to think of it more as a starting point for our self-awareness.

Each of us is unique, but people with the same personality type may feel the same in certain situations and look at things and make decisions in a similar way.They may be great in some areas where other personality types struggle, and vice versa. 

Discovering what makes us ‘tick’ helps us understand and appreciate that others may ‘tock’ with different natural preferences and that no type is better or worse. 

Having a positive language in the workplace can really help teams work better together.

So don’t worry about being boxed in and enjoy discovering your Type!

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Said or not said?

So think back over the course of your life - which one of these resonates with you more?
For some of you, it might be a close thing!
For me it's the top one - I tend to need to speak my thoughts out loud to help me form an answer, and I also feel the need to fill silences, then wish I hadn't!!
For some of you, it may be that you have missed the chance to give a brilliant reply, because you were formulating your final answer in your head.
Just as with personality type, there is no right or wrong answer here, but having an appreciation of how someone formulates their answer can really help with relationships at home as well as at work!

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Helping team dynamics

Could your team dynamics be better?    Did you know you can pick up clues to someone's personality type by how and what they write in emails?   Do they:

· use pleasantries, ask how you are?                           - miss typos?

· use short sentences or longer ones?                           - use bullet points?

· give or ask for a deadline for actions?

Depending on your personality type, you might then decide to ‘flex’ your approach a little based on these clues, to get their full attention, make use of their strengths or just ensure your communications meet their needs for maximum impact.

And if everyone in the team is able to pick up on the clues, or even better have discovered their personality type – that can really help drive a business forward!

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Facilitating change

Are your team or organisation going through a change?
When you appreciate the different personality types in your team it can help you plan ahead to give everyone the best opportunity to find change a less traumatic process by:

  • avoiding setting up resistance to the change

  • anticipating what problems might come up

  • ensuring communications meet the needs of the different types, not just those who are like you.

In addition, when individuals can make sense of their reactions to change and those of others in a non-judgmental way, it can help them weather the potential storm that is change, and embrace it instead!  

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Improved relationships

Before I understood about differences in personality type, I sometimes thought people were deliberately trying to wind me up!
Sometimes it was when they did something in a way in which seemed totally illogical to me.
Sometimes they were being so vague when I just needed the details!!
Or they left everything to the last minute on a joint presentation. Any of this resonating with you?

Discovering my own type, but also appreciating that others may be completely different to me was a real lightbulb moment.
I'm so much more tolerant now as a result.  Anyone in need of some lightbulb moments?!

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If you want your new starters to hit the ground running, then helping them to understand themselves better AND appreciate differences in others is a game changer.
Along with your usual onboarding programme, why not consider a fun and interactive workshop where they will discover their personality type. In addition and equally importantly they will appreciate differences in others and receive practical tips for working with others.

The outcome - enhanced team dynamics and a reduction in many of the challenges that working with new people can bring.

Some longer pieces about personality type

How can knowing about personality type help?

“Are you going to analyse me?!”

When I started my business and excitedly told people I did ‘personality profiling’, I heard this a few times!  On a couple of occasions, people actually stepped away from me!

There can be misconceptions about what personality profiling tools do, for example, “Is it going to put me in a box?”  

For me, it’s not about boxing people in, rather it’s a great place to start your journey to an increased self-awareness. Yes, people with the same ‘type’ do tend to prefer to do things in a similar way and can get wound up by similar things, but we are all unique individuals.

Here are 3 areas when appreciating cognitive diversity in the workplace (and indeed at home) can be a game changer:

1.  It’s not deliberate / personal!

When people with different personality types work together, it can be a recipe for frustration. It can appear that one person is trying to wind another person up, when actually it’s just that their natural preference is different.

Take report writing; when someone is detail oriented, it’s likely they will spot and be distracted by typos. For those who are big picture oriented, they may not have noticed them and so can be frustrated with the ‘picky’ feedback given.

Top tip: If you know you don’t always see typos, give your report to someone who will, before you hand in your final version so the person reading it can concentrate on your great ideas.


2.  Meeting deadlines

Those people who prefer to live a structured life, usually plan out a project and like to finish in good time. Pair them up with someone who has a much more relaxed relationship with time, doing their best work up against a deadline, and there’s the potential for sparks!

Top tips: Agree a deadline that works for both of you.

Resist the urge to ask “Have you done it yet?” before the agreed deadline to prevent people feeling micromanaged.

Provide timely updates, to provide reassurance that all is on track.


3.  Communication, communication, communication

We can have a tendency to communicate in a way that works for us, but by doing this, it can mean that colleagues with different personality types may become disengaged. Remember, big meetings don’t work for everyone, not everyone likes being put on the spot and some brilliant ideas can take up to 48 hours to form.

Top tip: Use a mixture of communication styles. Provide details, a vision and the opportunity for follow up questions, verbally or via email if you want to get the most from your team.

Discovering what makes you ‘tick’ and appreciating that others may ‘tock’ can enhance team dynamics, communication and productivity. It also means you can use the strengths of your team members, so they feel engaged.

To find out more about how to get the best from your team and start their journey of self-awareness, why not book a free discovery call to see how I can help?

Schedule a discovery call here

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