Communication with Personality
Have you noticed how you get along better with some people than with others?
Have you noticed that you are more likely to clash with some people than others?
Have you noticed that each person has a different personality?
I am sure that you have answered “yes” to each of the above questions. One of the beautiful things about being human is that we are each unique. While this may make for a diverse and interesting world, it can also be very frustrating when operating in a team or when in a leadership role. With some people it is really easy, but with others it is really hard. How many times have you thought that the people, for which communication is hard with, are the ones with a problem? Is it really their problem?
In the article “Communication Basics” I used the model above to explain how communication is encoded and decoded by the sender and receiver respectively. One of the factors in the encoding and decoding of a message is the personalities involved. So when we are communicating between people with different personalities we should be factoring in the personalities.
There are many different tools that analyse personality styles. Some are very complicated and others are simple. This article is only going to be a simple overview of personalities and does not include an assessment tool or a detailed overview of each personality type. This article is an introduction brief to the personalities.
A word of warning from the start, there is a number of important points that you need to consider when discussing or using the personality styles. These considerations are:
- Do not use the personalities as a label for people. Hence do not place people into a box based on their personality.
- Even if someone has an underlining personality style they may operate in a way that compensated their weaknesses due to a personal awareness, training and experience. Remember that people have control over their behaviours and responses.
- No one is just one personality; we are all a bit of everything. Also our behaviours and responses are not just impacted by an underlining personality, but also by our moods and the pressures we are under at the time.
So here is a quick summary of each of the personality types:
The Extrovert, The Talker, The Optimist
The popular personality is a witty and easy going type of person. Some of the strengths of the popular personality are that they are fun, get along with people, optimistic and are natural born leaders. Some of the weaknesses for the popular personality included being disorganised, lacking follow through with things and talking to much.
The Extrovert, The Doer, The Optimist
The powerful personality is the decisive and organised type of person. Some of the strengths of the powerful personality are they get things done, they make decisions, organised and are natural born leaders. Some of the weaknesses for the powerful personality included they are workaholics, controlling and lack people skills.
The Introvert, The Watcher, The Pessimist
The peaceful personality is a people focused type of person. Some of the strengths of the peaceful personality are that they are patient, easy going, have administrative ability and mediate issues. Some of the weaknesses for the peaceful personality include they lack excitement, resist change and can appear lazy at times.
The Introvert, The Thinker, The Pessimist
The Perfect Personality is a detailed and analytical type of person. Some of the strengths of the perfect personality are they are thoughtful, intelligent, purposeful and have high standards. Some of the weaknesses for the perfect personality include getting depressed, low self-esteem and tend to procrastinate with things.
So with a quick overview of the personalities one can see how certain personalities can at times support and complement each other. For example the peaceful personality may be able to support the powerful personality when it comes to people skills. However a powerful personality may be frustrated by the lack of task focus of the peaceful personality, while the peaceful personality may be frustrated by the treatment of the people by the powerful personality. So one way or another the way we communicate can complement and support each other or it can frustrate each other. So when you are communicating in the workplace or at home, remember that we may encode and decode the same message differently.
Written by Attila Ovari. 18 Nov 12.