How to Manage Different Personality Traits of a Team? – Simple DIY Hacks
“Don’t lose your queen over a bad chess move!”
We, humans, are a complex breed. Sometimes, we yearn for stuff that’s way beyond our reach. And sometimes, we overlook things which are good for us. We unnecessarily fight with the person opposite to us, when what we actually want is the other person to see our perspective. Other times we fake it to the point we start believing in it. We are sympathetic yet unforgiving, passionate yet unemotional, kindhearted yet vengeful.
There’s a whole lot of gap between what we say and, what we mean, what we want, or what we think we want and what we need. And hence, the perfect explosive formulae to a complex human character. You would think, with such a challenging and complex equation, such a breed of humans would be rare. However, in all glory of psychology, it’s just the opposite. In different concoction of traits, the entire human race comprises billions of unique complex creatures.
We, as humans, are a social animal, and no matter how an individual or private a person we are, we survive only through interaction. Without society, we are as good as tofu. Tasteless, shade-less existence. When we communicate, we bring forth our different shades. The same person can be demanding at work, soft as a parent, indecisive as a partner, and empathetic as a son.
How Are Managers Handling Their Team?
As a manager responsible for supervising a team, he is entrusted with the responsibility of bringing out the best in his team for the highest most achievable outcome. And, honestly achieving a target is less about the intended work and more about the attitude towards it. When an organization’s reputation is riding on a different combination of human traits, it’s only evident for a manager to handle each person differently and carefully. Without the right approach, he always runs a risk of unruly and non-compliant employee or even worse, of losing his employee to other organization.
Usually, every manager is handed a bible of chapters on how to manage a team. Even though we all understand that theory barely teaches us anything, at least not as much as experience and practice do, there are few theories which, if taken out of printed lines and practiced in real life, would actually step up your game. One such concept is that of color temperaments.
Color temperament hypothesizes that each individual can be placed in any of the four-color groups depending on the different combinations of a trait he possesses. And when you as a manager know what kind of a person your employee is, it’s easier to have a simple conversation with him, steering the discourse and molding the person to work in the desired way. With the help of the color temperament, you would know exactly how to appeal to them and what approach will drive the best.
Four Color Temperaments
Traits – must be true to themselves, look for symbolism, committed to ideals, involved in causes, feelings-based decisions, encourage expression, adaptable, adjustable and cooperative, need harmony, bring unity to the society
Approach – Take time to catch up and have a lighthearted, casual conversation apart from regular one-on-one work-related communication. Build a friendly rapport. Be sensitive to their emotions and causes.
Traits – are curious, analytical and logical, require intellectual freedom and stimulation, need to be competent and seek perfection, questions authority, value concise communication, slow decision-makers and push to improve, oblivious to emotions, brings innovation to the society
Approach – Be armed and guarded with facts and figures, if you do not wish to be caught off guard and in spider’s web. Have a precise and to the point communication since free-flowing conversation will get difficult.
Traits – Active, enthusiastic, creative, freethinking and spontaneous, optimistic and impulsive risk-takers, drawn to variety and crisis, like to be center of attention while resisting commitment, animated communicators, difficulty in finding acceptance, brings excitement to the society
Approach – The best way of guiding them to reach the best results involves them in joint conversation and decision making while addressing a concern. While they are great at bringing innovative ideas to the table, they don’t like being bogged down to them, so stay on track as there are chances of getting lost in ideas.
Traits – Strong-willed, driven, competitive, punctual and dutiful, keep commitments, feel self-sufficient, sense of accomplishments on completion, goal-oriented, play by rules, desire order, structure and position of authority, bring stability to society
Approach – Drop the backend story and get directly to the point. Provide precise facts, figures, and statistics, decide on an action plan and move on. Be prepared to be challenged.
Since birth, we grow up with our own mental compass and subconscious mind, which tells us how to act, when we act in response to others. We have a sense of right and wrong and a gut feeling to understand the person standing in front of us based on their behavior. What the color temperament does is, build on our gut feeling and sensibility and group them to give us a detailed understanding of not how the colors are relevant to the traits and approaches but differentiate between the different combinations of attributes.
Again, even if the differentiation gives us this detailed summary and insight into a person’s psyche, we need to understand that humans are 50 shades of grey. And, it is more likely that a person may be a mix of traits from more than one color groups. Because there might easily be a difference between what I am, how I see myself, and how others perceive me. A person can be determined but look obsessive to others. His fun and wit may come across as sarcasm to others. So, it should be well understood that though color temperaments aid you better in exploring personalities; it is only a point of reference, not ironclad ‘one size fits all’ and definitely not accurate to the point. It should be used in conjunction with your better judgment.