Achieving a harmonious productive workforce is not an accident and there are a few easy steps we can take to make it a reality. In this article, I continue to explore the four fundamental behavioral styles and learn how to spot them and where the styles are most suited.
There are four styles, each bringing something different to an organization and no style is better than another - each has a role to play. Once we understand the characteristics of a style, we can use this to improve effectiveness across a range of situations.
The second style is the "I" style - the Influencer. Again, like the D style in the last article, this style is easy to spot.
Influencers are open and friendly and tend to be quite talkative. They are also quite easily excited and can become very animated. In the workplace, this behavior can be of value and at same time a distraction to other styles, so understanding how this group behaves is important. If your business is one where there is a need for quiet, detailed work, hiring someone with a high I style, could create some issues, both for the existing staff who may not understand how to cope with the talkative I, or for the I who may find that the limited interaction of quieter styles is stifling.
I styles will tend to be bigger picture and not be focused on details - they won't be great at detailed budgeting - it will be something they need to work on. They can have a shorter attention span and when speaking may jump from one subject to another. They are very often "bright shiny thing" oriented. For the more detailed oriented styles, this can be frustrating, so maintaining tolerance and harmony in the workplace requires all styles to have an appreciation of the strengths of the other.
Is make great sales people, however may lack the attention to detail to follow through on paperwork. This means that structuring a sales team such that there is a person who has a more methodical approach to cover off paperwork and other issues can be beneficial. In my experience, nagging and continuing to push paperwork onto a high I is not an effective solution. Pairing that person with someone who can compliment them is a more effective solution.
When communicating with an I, don't cut to the chase straight away. To engage this style, it is important to be friendly, ask how their weekend was and make time to have a "chat" - this is not wasting time, it is helping you move onto the same page as they are and you are stepping into their world. When selling to an "I" small talk and lightening up will help build rapport much faster than a straight no-nonsense approach you might use to talk to the "D" style.
Is like some light hearted fun and silliness, hence in a recruiting situation, if your culture is very formal, quiet and not a lot of interaction between staff, then be careful when hiring someone with high I characteristics. This doesn't mean that the parties can't work together, .what it means is that each needs to understand how the other thinks and how each has different ways of expressing themselves and the contribution each makes to the overall business.
In the next article, we will look at the S style and begin to build up a more complete picture of how each plays it part in business performance.
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