While many prefer to think their office is one big happy family, that idea can sometimes be miles away from the truth. Like any organization, the people who make up workplaces come from diverse backgrounds and upbringings. While this can oftentimes work to an office’s benefit, it’s a virtual certainty that it can also lead to tension and conflict if personalities are mismanaged. While people are unique, they can often be classified as certain types of personalities. With that in mind, we have compiled a guide to different personality types and have provided some advice for keeping the lines of communication open with those who fall within different personality types.
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Narcissists are people who are very into themselves. They feel like they are very important and routinely crave attention as a form of self validation. So, with all that considered, what is the best way to tell someone who thinks they are the greatest that they can or need to improve? First off, narcissists can be extremely sensitive to criticism, so take it a little easier on them as they can react badly if you push them too far. Second, use feedback as a means of self improvement. The best way to motivate a Narcissist is to make them believe in themselves. It’s playing with fire, but the best Narcissist is a confident and motivated one.
Passive-aggressive behaviour is defined as indirect hostility. What does this mean in the workplace? It means looking for employees who are routinely late for work or meetings, procrastinate regularly, and just generally show an indifference towards completing work. When it comes to communicating with passive-aggressive personalities you need to set very clear goals and expectations. Likewise, their roles can often be optimized by making their jobs more clear cut and less open-ended. It is also important you have clear lines of communication with this employee to try and determine why they are not as engaged as they could be.
It’s normal to be let down if something doesn’t go your way. But, employees who take this to the extreme are guilt-trippers. Armed with a sense of constantly being slighted, guilt-trippers can have a negative effect on an entire office. So, what’s the best way to speak with them? It’s important you devote time to teaching them effective communication methods so that they can express their feelings effectively and take responsibility for themselves. Taking this time to speak with them can also improve their self confidence.
Introverts can be described as inward looking people, choosing reflection versus reaction. This mental patience means it’s important to let them enter a situation 100% prepared. Coming at them with too much new information too fast could result in them becoming uncomfortable. While they do not require much micromanagement, you do need to be patient with them. As long as you give well-defined objectives and some space to work and grow you shouldn’t have many communication issues with introverts.
Extroverts, unlike introverts, are the kind of people who gain the most from their environments. While introverts prefer to reflect and plan, extroverts love to strategize as a group. While you may want to have set goals for an introvert, discussing goals and strategies with extroverts can be a very beneficial practice.
Managing different personalities in the workplace isn’t easy. To learn more about how to unify and motivate your team of unique personalities try team building activities from Esprit De Corps.