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More on personality types – Work interactions May 17, 2017

Posted by fetzthechemist in Uncategorized.
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The personality types found by tests such as the Myers Briggs can be very useful in helping to understand the people you must work with. A key example is your boss or immediate supervisor. If you do not understand how she or he thinks, you can set yourself up for failure.

Is your boss a person who is detail oriented or a bigger picture thinker? A mismatch in your work can result in 2 bad possible results. If your boss is detailed oriented and you present an assessment or results in a bigger picture description, your boss will think you are too sloppy, too unfocused, not looking at what needs to be done right now. If in contrast, you give a detailed assessment or report and only lightly go over the bigger picture, you fail because your boss thinks you cannot understand your role in the longer view or in the team, that you are good at day-to-day tasks, but not for creating strategies.

There are many other characteristics that can be critical.

Perfectionist vs. good enough is enough: Does your boss have a tipping point where a certain effort or a solution can be acceptable? Or must everything be thoroughly completed and any solution cover all the current and future problem?

80 versus 20: A variation of the above one. In looking at solutions, does your boss look at the 80% of the time that yours will work or is the focus the 20% in which it does not? (The proportions can vary for individuals, but the point is does your boss focus on the majority of it being a solution or at the minority in which it is not?)

Intellectual vs. emotional: Is your boss a logical thinker who is open to ideas or do emotions – personal biases or preferences – dominate?

Results-oriented vs. process-oriented: Does your boss look first at what your ideas results are or at the path it takes to get there. Path people often focus on the difficulties and overemphasize them.

Black and white versus grays: This is a very key one. Does your boss see the world in black and white, right or wrong, good or bad? Or is is a continuum of grays of varying values that must be balance for gains and losses.

Direct vs. indirect: In dealing with issues, usually involving people problems, does your boss prefer to charge headlong into an issue? Or does she or he prefer to take a causing approach that inches towards the matter?

Social vs. not-social

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Comments»

1. Damita Brooks Casey - September 24, 2017

Very interesting. During my 43 years working for the state of Arkansas I can say I have worked with all these personalities. It has been a great learning experience learning how to adopt. One trait not listed is southern men who believed women belonged at home in the kitchen; and especially black women. I even had bosses throw slurs to see how I react. I had to tell one that I attended a rural almost all white school where I had to learn how to react peacefully with all people. I turned what could had been negative into positive. I even believed in my course of putting my best foot forward I was able to change some people’s minds about using generalities for all black people. I will always be thankful to Sylvan Hills staff and some of my classmates.

fetzthechemist - September 25, 2017

I did not include differences in cultural attitudes. Having travelled globally, as well as dealing with people from everywhere in my career, I find those to be important and very specific. An African black man from Nigeria is not like an African black man from the Sudan nor South Africa. Religion and culture and history define the differences. There are worlds of difference from white men from Canada, Australia, South Africa, and New Zealand, although all live in modern, first-world nations that were British colonies.


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