Some call it “personality types”. Some call it “mindset”. Some measure it with the Myers-Briggs. Others with the DISC. No matter what you call it, or how you measure it, these personality differences do matter.
Why are they so popular? Because they make such intuitive sense. They are important tools in our attempt to gain better self-awareness, leverage our emotional intelligence, and improve our performance as human beings.
Personally, I use a model developed by Robert Quinn, Kim Cameron, and Jeff DeGraff at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. It is called the “Competing Values Framework” and is now the “Michigan Leadership Model”. I like it because it is direct, intuitive, and based on solid research. It also has colors associated with it.
Here is how I describe the four basic personality differences.
- “Collaborators” are people who care about relationships, care about people’s feelings, like to mentor, and develop other people. First and foremost their mindset is to look at relationships and how their actions affect others and how they are affected by other people’s actions. Like the sun nurturing all living things, we call these folks “yellow”.
- “Competitors” are the people who tend to focus on producing results, setting goals, and achieving these goals. Like the IBM salesforce, we call this type “blues”.
- “Creatives” are people who like to generate new ideas, innovate, embrace change and constantly search for new solutions to old problems. Constantly introducing new ideas for growth, we refer to this type as the “greens”.
- “Controls” care deeply about rules and processes. They focus on ways to get the job done most efficiently. In honor of the barristers in London who bound their law books in red tape, we call these people the “reds”.
In my view, there is one more very important point to remember well. Most of us human beings are not totally one color. Generally, in my experience, I see most people as a blend. Most of us have strong elements of two of the characteristics; we can function adequately in a third type, but rarely do we see people who excel and feel strong about their capability in all four types.
Using myself as an example, I describe myself as having a ton of yellow, lots of green, a little blue, and very little red. If I describe myself by distributing 100 points, I would be:
So here is your challenge. Take the 100 point test. If you had to describe your personality, using the four colors of the “Competing Values Framework” model, how would you distribute the points?
Now, what have you learned about yourself from this exercise?
To see more about my latest book, “The Journal for Self-Aware: A Guide for Success in Work and Life”, click on Link here.