What are the personalities that your team is missing?

blog2.4.20

Most of us tend to think great teams are made of great skills, but personalities are also a factor.

Building a high-performance team is more than recruiting mere skill. The right combination of personalities can change our teams’ interactions and our companies’ successes.

Personal character considerably affects the way our teams work together. Team dynamics also significantly impact the results of our companies. The right mix of personalities can completely change how we do business. 

Harvard Business Review’s “Great Teams Are About Personalities, Not Just Skills,” written by Dave Winsborough and Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, explores why personality may be more important than skill set when hiring. The authors write, “a large meta-analysis showed that team members’ personalities influence cooperation, shared cognition, information sharing, and overall team performance. In other words, who you are affects how you behave and how you interact with other people, so team members’ personalities operate like the different functions of a single organism.”

While we naturally consider if someone is compatible with us before hiring them, do we ever consider if they are a good fit for our teams? Often we forget to consider how different personalities might impact the function of our teams.

The personalities you hire greatly influence your team:

  1. They impact the compatibility of the group and ultimately how effectively your team works together.
  2. They balance each other out. When one is a bold visionary, and another is a detailed realist, they can operate much more effectively.
  3. They keep the wheels spinning. Different types of people help a team move forward and keep one another on their toes. If everyone was the same, it would be easy for people to settle in their ways or not be challenged by each other.

As personality types go, you can get deep into an individual’s complexities using tools such as the Enneagram and the Myers-Briggs test. Or you can look at the following four essential work personality traits when you are hiring.

Here are the top four work personalities that make up a stellar team:

  1. The Analytical. Analytical individuals are profoundly insightful and motivated by purpose. They set a high standard not only for themselves but for the entire team.
  2. The Driver. Drivers are dynamic, easily compelled and ready to take action. They will keep the group moving forward.
  3. The Amiable. Amiable types are peaceful and patient. These personalities will add a harmonious element to your organization.
  4. The Gregarious. These are expressive, charismatic and outgoing individuals. Gregarious types are not only high-spirited but come with a readiness to jump in the game. 

As we look to hire these different types of personalities, we also don’t want to be typecasting people. Every person, regardless of his/her personality type, is unique. But the right mix of these personalities can lead us to healthier, more high-performing teams.

Is there such a thing as the right team? Maybe not. Certainly a variety of personalities and scenarios can work for many companies.

In some cases, there is someone best fit for that currently available role on your team. But even in hiring personalities, we must remember they are not static forms but evolving individuals. You may be surprised by what grows within and from your team over time.

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