Posts Tagged ‘teamwork’

How We Make Decisions - Thinking or Feeling

Sunday, February 17th, 2013

                                   T—————X—————F

The third dimension of behavior in psychological type theory is how we prefer to make decisionsThinking or Feeling. 

The PEOPLE Process Type Wheel

The PEOPLE Process Type Wheel

Each behavior is on a continuum with a preference for one or the other, the degree of which falling somewhere along the continuum. A person could be a strong Thinker or Feeler, meaning they would fall completely to the far left or right of the continuum. The research says that we are, however, one or the other, not both. Even though we use both preferences throughout our day in the Decision dimension, we dont use each preference with equal ease. Our inborn preference is our natural strength and according to research we are born with a preference for one behavior over the other  part of our DNA.

In the American population, 50% are Thinkers and 50% are Feelers. Of the Thinkers, about 65% are men, and of the Feelers, 65% are women.

Thinking and Feeling describe the two ways people make decisions, or come to conclusions. Thinking and Feeling both describe rational decision-making processes. It’s not that Thinkers have no feelings, or that Feelers are incapable of logic, it’s just that they use very different criteria to make their decisions.    

Thinkers make decisions more objectively, weighing the pros and cons. For Thinkers, logic rules. When making a decision, Thinkers take a step back and analyze the situation, logically and impersonally, asking, “Does this make sense? What are the pros and cons? What are the ramifications of the decision?” Thinkers objectify the decision.

Feelers make decisions based on how they feel about the issue and how others will be affected by it. Feelers inject themselves into the situation asking, “How do I feel about this? How will it affect me and others? Is this the right thing to do? What are my personal values telling me to do?” Feelers personalize the situation.

Personal feelings and values are important to Feeling types and often they will go to great lengths to remain true to their beliefs. Thinkers are logical and analytical while Feelers are sensitive and empathetic.

It’s no surprise that preferences for Thinking or Feeling influence career choices. The helping professions attract large numbers of Feelers because this gives them an opportunity to fulfill one of their greatest needs, helping people. Feelers have a drive to understand others and receive satisfaction from assisting others in whatever way they can. Business and management attracts a lot of Thinkers because when it comes to being able to make a decision that is based on the bottom line and consider what’s best for the overall company, they can more easily make the decision and take action. Thinkers can step back from the decision, analyze it logically and come to conclusion based on what is best for the company.  A Feeler usually steps forward, putting himself in the shoes of the individuals being affected within that company, and are strongly influenced by their own personal beliefs and values in making the decision.

Thinkers are often attracted to careers dealing with manufacturing, research and development. Thinkers are most satisfied with jobs where there is a minimum of employee caretaking and like working with other people that are as competent as they are. Thinkers place more emphasis on being truthful, even when it hurts feelings, than being tactful.

Feelers are naturally more attentive and concerned with other people because they have a strong need to be liked. This can be seen as being helpful and friendly and in practically every organization across the country, you can find the nurturer, the person whom coworkers go for emotional support and comfort. Whether appreciated by the company or not, these people provide a valuable service.

On teams, Thinkers are great at being able to size up a situation and put the necessary steps in place to accomplish the goal but it’s the Feelers that create the connection with others that allows the team members to function together, and get the job done - because of feeling that their contribution to the team matters.

It’s very valuable for Thinkers and Feelers to work together. My preference for making Decisions is Thinking and I am often considered abrupt by others because of my ability to impersonalize an issue and consider the logical and possible consequences. My Feeling abilities are not well developed. I care greatly for people and desire to be of service and assistance to them, but I don’t come across that way. So, I rely on the Feeling people in my life to provide input for me when I’m weighing a decision that affects other people - and practically every decision we make does affect others.

On the other hand, a dear friend of mine has a preference for making Decisions as a Feeler and calls on the phone to discuss situations in her life because of my ability to impersonalize and assist her in thinking of things she hadn’t considered because of her strong desire to connect with people and assist them at a personal level.

Probably one of the greatest contributions of type in my life has been with the friendship of my dear “Sister Paula”. Paula has a preference for Feeling and as I’ve already discussed, my preference in making Decisions is for Thinking. Paula tells me that once I introduced her to personality type and explained my type preferences, she was able to quit projecting her expectations of my behavior based on her own process. This knowledge has done wonders for our relationship.

When you factor in knowledge of personality type into your Decision making, it becomes clear that all of us need each other for the wealth of valuable contributions we offer in our business endeavors, family relationships and friendships. In fact, our differences just make us that much more valuable for the point of view and experience we are able to provide one another.

There are four behavior dimensions in personality type: how our Energy is focused, how we gather Information, how we make Decisions, and how we take Action. Decision is the third dimension and all four are equally important. Having knowledge and understanding of our preferences in each of the four dimensions of our associates and loved ones can profoundly affect the quality of our life and relationships.

How To Measure The Mix - Teambuilding 101

Monday, November 5th, 2012

Excerpts from The TYPE Reporter, Issue No. 4

The TYPE Reporter is a newsletter about your personality type, and how it influences you in all the stages of life.?You can subscribe on the website or by contacting Susan Scanlon, INFJ, Editor, 703-764-5370.)

HOW TO MEASURE THE MIX????????????????????????

The PEOPLE Process Type Wheel

by Susan Scanlon

I decided to do an issue on ?team building? because I?d heard that term used often among the people who take the MBTI? into the workplace. There?s no doubt about it, teamwork is a popular subject in organization development circles.

But teamwork was not an idea that excited me at first. In my fantasies, the individual does great things, not the group. I used to cheer on the heroes in the novels of Ayn Rand, who triumphed against that symbol of mediocrity ? the committee.

In the few experiences I?ve had working with groups, the argument and discussion went on and on, very little got done, and I was so busy agreeing or disagreeing with others that there was no chance for me to listen to what my own best thoughts were.

I?m an American and an Introvert, so it wasn?t going to be easy to convince me that I could produce a better product if I had ?a wide mix of people? messing around with it first.

But I?ve listened now to many team members and team consultants and I realize that they?re talking about a different kind of team than Ayn Rand?s or the groups I?ve worked with. They?re talking about a team that can enhance the effectiveness of the individual, that really does improve the final product, and is absolutely essential for success in this very complex and competitive world.

They never played down the difficulty of creating a team that is diverse yet able to work together well, but they made teamwork sound just as dramatic as tales of individual heroism, and worth the work.

From dozens of interviews, my team and I selected six team stories. These stories illustrated some of the more common problems a team might have, and how the MBTI? can help. We looked for messages in these stories, and from the messages we came up with six questions you might ask yourself about your own team?

?The Mix??????????????????????????????????????????????????? How To Make It? Work

?1. Does your team have a good mix of types?Fill in a type table with the types of our team members. Are all the eight preferences represented? Do you have at least one member who is an ST, SF, NT and NF?????????????????????2. If your team does not have a good mix of types, who?s missing?Don?t stop at saying you?re missing an ST. Make a list of all the kinds of input an ST might bring to your team. List the ?information? that is not available to the team.3. If your team does not have a good mix of types, what can you do to compensate for it? You can hire people in, you can seek outside opinions, or you can invent a team member and think for him ? ?Would an N be able to see the big picture in all of this?? ?Would an S be able to see a practical use for it?? ?What else would a P want to talk about before we make a decision?? ? 4. Does your team have a positive attitude toward differences?Very often, just the new perspective of the type theory is enough to smooth out a team?s problems considerably.????????5. Does everyone on your team contribute their preferences?Are all the Intuitives really sharing their Intuitive perceptions? Do the S?s feel free to express their doubts that something will work, or are they afraid of being called a ?stick in the mud?? If our team isn?t benefiting from all the viewpoints represented, they need to work on creating an atmosphere of trust and acceptance. Or they can try to deliberately draw out people?s preferences. (?I need to run this by you for your Sensing? says the manager.)6. Is your team leader open to the contribution of all the members? The team leader can have an enormous influence on whose opinion gets heard and whose opinion gets acted on. It?s important that the team have an impartial leader, or even better, one who knows the positive potential of each member and can draw the group?s attention to that.
???????????????????????? THE TYPE REPORTER TEAM DIAGNOSTIC

A TEAM NEEDS A GOOD MIX OF TYPES

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Excerpts from The TYPE Reporter, Issue No. 4
www.typereporter.com

by Tom Carskadon, INFP

Sometimes folk wisdom is right on, but sometimes it?s so contradictory that it?s no help at all. Do ?opposites attract,? or do ?birds of a feather flock together?? This is an important question not just in friendship, love, and marriage, but also in team building.?

The PEOPLE Process Trainer’s Manual & Participant’s Package

A large body of research in psychology suggests that in general, we are most attracted to people who are fairly similar to us. Isabel Myers concluded that we tend to favor people similar in type to ourselves, more often marrying them, for instance; but that when it comes to team building, a well rounded mix of types is the most effective and desirable.

This idea has been part of type lore for decades; but is there actual research evidence to back it up? A few years ago Bruce Blaylock, a professor at Eastern Kentucky University, did a major study in which 17 four-person teams of students competed with each other over a month in a sophisticated and realistic simulated production exercise.

Some of the teams included a wide variety of types; other teams had all members with the same type or very similar types. All were objectively evaluated according to their total effectiveness. The teams composed of a broad range of types clearly and significantly outperformed the teams with little or no variety in types. Writing in Volume 6 of Research in Psychological Type, Dr. Blaylock notes that no particular type preference was predictive of success; instead, teams with a thorough mixture of types outperformed virtually any single-type or similar-type team.

This is one area where type theory and type research mesh very well. In forming teams, it may be tempting to choose people similar to ourselves ? and this could be a special trap for feeling types who value harmony so highly ? but even in tasks that seem ?made? for a particular type, the best results are likely to come from a well rounded mix of types.

(At the time of writing this article, Tom Carskadon,INFP, was a professor of psychology at Mississippi State University and editor of the journal RESEARCH IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TYPE.)

Mistakes We Make When Teaching Type

Monday, February 13th, 2012

This article is not just for professional trainers of type.

Sure, there are lots of complaints that professionals are making mistakes, that they?re making statements about the theory that aren?t true, making statements about the types that put people on the defensive, not telling people enough to answer their questions or excite them about the power of the theory, or telling them so much they get lost in all the lingo and complications of it. But this article is not just for professional trainers of type. It?s for everyone who has more than a passing interest in type, and that includes you and me. Why? Because all learners of type naturally become teachersof type.???

The PEOPLE Process Assessment Wheel

You will want to know the types of the people in your life. They are the ones who will make the words come alive for you. I had read that SJs were organized, practical, and persistent. But those were just words to me until an SJ came to our business and improvements that had been talked about for years finally began to happen because he kept gently pushing and pushing them to completion.

I had read that NTs were global and critical, but those were just words to me until I had an NT edit my writing. He suggested many, many changes, but rather than hating it, I was delighted. Listening to him opened up my viewpoint miles wider, amd made my ideas much clearer.

I had read that SPs were physical and playful, but those were just words to me until my SP friend and I had spent many afternoons with our children, wandering along rivers and through woods, and I?d come home filled with light and air and the joy of having a body and living in the natural world.

I had read that NFs see the best in people and want to bring that out, but those were just words to me until one afternoon when I was confiding to an NF friend that I was worried about my son?s recent behavior. Somehow, by her questions and reminding me of things, the afternoon ended with me excited again about the great potential lying in that little boy.

The gifts of SJs, NTs, SPs, and NFs are no longer just words for me, they are sights and sounds and feelings. I have real examples of them in my life.

A second reason to know the types of the people in your life is so you can solve some of the problems you might be having with them. For example, I used to listen to my ISFJ sister complain about her life, and naturally, because I?m Intuitive, I?d suggest all kinds of ways that she could make ?a new life? for herself. But my suggestions involved radical changes in her situation, things she had no stomach for, so she always ended up having to come up with a million reasons why she couldn?t follow my advice. But ever since I?ve known her type, I?ve stopped doing that. Now I listen to her problems, and praise her for her loyalty and ability to endure difficult situations. Then she herself is able to think of small changes she could make to improve things.

I never would have had the opportunity to understand type in its living context, or to have it make such improvements in my relationships if I hadn?t taken the time and trouble to find out what type my family, friends, and colleagues were. I could not persuade all of them to go out and take workshops given by professionals, and with the majority of them, I could not guess their type without their input. If I wanted to know their types, I had to go through all the steps of ?training? them in it myself, and doing it in an informal setting.

But I taught the people in my world about type without any preparation, guidelines, or instruction on how to teach type. I had learned a lot about type, but nothing about how to teach it. And I think I made a lot of mistakes. I wish I had learned some basic guidelines for giving introductions to type, so I could have avoided some of the errors in the trial and error period.

Then recently, I heard a speech by Jean Kummerow, an ESTJ psychologist, management consultant, MBTI? trainer, and co-author of the book Lifetypes (1989 Warner). In that speech I felt I had found the ?basics.? It seems to me that if you follow Kummerow?s guidelines, you?ll give people the maximum opportunity to find themselves in their type at their first introduction to it, get excited about the information, and put it to good use in their lives.

A Checklist For Introducing Type

Let people do a ?Self-assessment? before getting their results from the MBTI?.

Describe the preferences in an accurate, positive and unbiased way, and remember to use qualifiers like ?most? and ?many.?

Give examples from the literature, your own life, and the world of the trainee.

Don?t read too much into MBTI? scores.

Make your goal simple: to teach the person the meaning of the eight preferences, and help them choose their type.

Provide follow-up reinforcement somehow, and give adequate handouts.

(The TYPE Reporter, Excerpt from Issue No. 38, written by Susan Scanlon.)

(Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is a trademark or registered trademark of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Trust in the United States and other countries.)

TEAMWORK!

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Excerpts from The TYPE Reporter, Issue No. 4
www.typereporter.com

???????????????????????? A TEAM NEEDS A GOOD MIX OF TYPES

by Tom Carskadon, INFP

Sometimes folk wisdom is right on, but sometimes it?s so contradictory that it?s no help at all. Do ?opposites attract,? or do ?birds of a feather flock together?? This is an important question not just in friendship, love, and marriage, but also in team building.?

A large body of research in psychology suggests that in general, we are most attracted to people who are fairly similar to us. Isabel Myers concluded that we tend to favor people similar in type to ourselves, more often marrying them, for instance; but that when it comes to team building, a well rounded mix of types is the most effective and desirable.

This idea has been part of type lore for decades; but is there actual research evidence to back it up? A few years ago Bruce Blaylock, a professor at Eastern Kentucky University, did a major study in which 17 four-person teams of students competed with each other over a month in a sophisticated and realistic simulated production exercise.

Some of the teams included a wide variety of types; other teams had all members with the same type or very similar types. All were objectively evaluated according to their total effectiveness. The teams composed of a broad range of types clearly and significantly outperformed the teams with little or no variety in types. Writing in Volume 6 of Research in Psychological Type, Dr. Blaylock notes that no particular type preference was predictive of success; instead, teams with a thorough mixture of types outperformed virtually any single-type or similar-type team.

This is one area where type theory and type research mesh very well. In forming teams, it may be tempting to choose people similar to ourselves ? and this could be a special trap for feeling types who value harmony so highly ? but even in tasks that seem ?made? for a particular type, the best results are likely to come from a well rounded mix of types.

(At the time of writing this article, Tom Carskadon,INFP, was a professor of psychology at Mississippi State University and editor of the journal RESEARCH IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TYPE.)

Personality Type & The Coaching Process

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

The application of personality type into the coaching process?both the person being coached and the type of other people in their life?is particularly valuable because you can identify and develop his or her strengths, assist them in recognizing blind spots and how to manage them and strategize a method for personal and career development.?

The PEOPLE Process Type Wheel

Step 1: Assess the Client?s Type
Guide the person through Side 1 of the The PEOPLE Process Wheel, explaining each of the four dimensions of behavior, the two preferences within each behavior dimension, and have them choose their four letter type.

Step 2: Determine Strengths and Challenges
By yourself, review the person?s type from the standpoint of their strengths as it relates to their personality type. Think through the description of their preferences on side 1 of the Wheel and determine which qualities are assets and which present the greatest challenge. Have the person answer the following questions:

  • As you read through the description of your personality type preferences, which ones seem like assets and which present the greatest challenges?
  • If someone wanted to have a positive relationship with you, what fundamental things about your type would they need to understand?
  • Which aspects of your psychological type are the most difficult for you to accept or change?
  • Which aspects of your type most often cause relationship problems between you and others?
  • How have your personality type preferences influenced your life and career?

Often conflicts between the person being coached and the people in their life comes from differences in preferences. Lead the person through the descriptions of all of the preferences on Side 1 of the Wheel: E-I, S-N, T-F, and J-P. Assist them in choosing the four-letter type of the person with which they are experiencing conflict from Side 1 of the Wheel.

Profile Sheets ? 16 Personality Types

Have the person choose their Profile Sheet and the Profile Sheet of the person with whom they are experiencing conflict from the package. Compare the individual descriptions in each of the categories and answer the following three questions on Side 2 of the Profile Sheet:

In what areas are you similar to this person?
In what areas are you different from this person?
In what areas can you improve your relations with this person?

When going through this exercise, the person is then able to step back and realize that behaviors are most often the result of each other?s inborn, personality type.

Use the following questions to guide discussion around areas they might need to address:

  • What contributions do you bring to the relationship?
  • Which of your habits might be irritating to the other?
  • What do you find valuable about each other?
  • What does the other do that bothers you?
  • What do you hope to achieve in resolving this conflict?

Step 3: Evaluate Individual Needs
Assist the person being coached in evaluating their needs through discussion of a series of questions:

  • What are some of your behaviors that seem to get in the way of having effective relationships with others?
  • What talents do you have that are especially helpful to others?
  • How would your spouse, boss, colleagues, or close friends briefly describe you?
  • What do you care most about in your life? What concerns you most?
  • What do you feel proud of and what concerns you about the way people at work treat one another?
  • What inspires or motivates you?
  • What kind of appreciation/recognition do you prefer? From whom? Under what circumstances?
  • What kind of criticism do you prefer? From whom? Under what circumstances?
  • Which work tasks do you pass on to others, ignore, or never get around to doing?
  • Tell me about a recent change you?ve experienced. How did you react? How did you cope with it?
  • Describe how you handle change.
  • What are your thoughts about conflict? What do you do to resolve it? How effective have your efforts been? Why?
  • Are there any questions I have not asked that we should discuss?

Step 4: Assess Skills and Interests
Lead the person through a discussion of the following four questions:

  • Things I like and do well
  • Things I don?t like but do well
  • Things I like but find difficult to do
  • Things I don?t like and struggle to do

Focus your discussion on things the person likes and does well. Those things the person doesn?t like and struggles with doing, identify as areas for coaching. Assist the person in developing ways to handle those things they don?t like and struggle with.

Step 5: Develop Your Action Plan
The key to successful coaching is identification of objectives, steps that will be taken, timelines and the desired results. To achieve this:

  • Have the person identify someone they trust that can help them practice the coaching suggestions
  • Develop specific action items and timelines. Establish accountability?such as how will the person know when they have reached a goal?
  • Encourage the person being coached to practice the behaviors in coaching sessions and then in ?real time.?
  • Suggest the person keep a journal where they record behaviors practiced and the results?who, what, when, and where. Discuss the results of the experiences practiced in the next coaching session.
  • Share personal insights about your own type and your potential interactions with other types as it relates to strengths and differences. Encourage person being coached to give details about how process is moving forward toward identified goals, needs and wants, and be clear about what is working.