Archive for October, 2009

TEAMWORK – Part II

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

HOW TO MEASURE THE MIX

by Susan Scanlon

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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?

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THE TYPE REPORTER TEAM DIAGNOSTIC

?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?The Mix

?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?

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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.

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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??

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The Dynamics That Make The Mix Work

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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.

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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.)

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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.


(Susan Scanlon, INFJ, is the Editor of The TYPE Reporter, 703-764-5370, www.typereporter.com)

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TEAMWORK!

Monday, October 26th, 2009

A TEAM NEEDS A GOOD MIX OF TYPES

by Tom Carskadon, INFP

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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(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.)

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Personality Type and Careers

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

A thorough understanding of your personality type can be a tremendous guide that can help you to:

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????????? Choose a new job or career

????????? Change your job or career

????????? Increase your satisfaction with your present career

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Your personality type can assist you in developing your career goals and establishing a process to reach those goals.? When you use Side 1 of The PEOPLE Process Wheel to decide your four-letter type, you can study the Profile Sheet that is within the participant package for your type and gain a thorough understanding of your strengths ? your unique gifts.?

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The more you understand about yourself, the better your decisions will be and the more effectively you will be able to implement those decisions.? Your personality preferences can help you decide what you want to do, how to approach that field and get what you want.?

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To briefly review, personality type theory was developed by Dr. Carl Jung in the early 1900?s.? Dr. Jung sought to explain the normal differences between healthy people.? Jung espoused that the differences in people?s behavior was a result from people?s inborn tendencies to use their minds in different ways.? As people act on these tendencies, they develop patterns of behavior.

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We have different energy levels, notice different aspects of the world around us, make decisions based on different criteria and structure our lives in different ways depending on what makes us most comfortable.? These characteristics combine to create the whole personality.? Dr. Jung identified four dimensions that make up our personality type ? and these are part of our DNA ? they are inborn traits.?

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The four dimensions are:? Energy, Information, Decision, Action, and are used by us hundreds of times a day.? Each dimension consists of two opposite poles.? Picture each dimension as a continuum with a mid-point in the center.? Each of us has a natural inborn preference (strength) for one side of the continuum or the other in each of the four dimensions.?

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Turn The PEOPLE Process Wheel to Side 2 and review how someone should treat you in the four windows that match your four letter type.? This will give you insight into the types of work and surroundings that will be most fulfilling for you.? For instance, if in the Energy behavior dimension you chose Introvert you will see that the way you prefer to be treated is:

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????????? Relate one-on-one

????????? Value their need for privacy

????????? Allow them time to change focus

????????? Ask questions to draw them out

????????? Do not pressure for an instant response

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This tells you that you like to work alone and don?t need a lot of supervision.? You?re great at putting things together behind the scenes.

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However, if you chose Extravert in the Energy behavior dimension, you?ll find that you like to have a lot of interaction with others and you want them to:

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????????? Listen attentively

????????? Be actively responsive

????????? Be energetic & enthusiastic

????????? Support their need to communicate

????????? Recognize their need for social interaction

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Extraverts like to be able to bounce ideas off of others and get immediate feedback.? They would be very frustrated working all alone in a cubicle on a project by themselves.

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In the Information behavior dimension, if you chose Sensing as your preference, you?ll find that you have skills in dealing with facts and details and when receiving information from someone you prefer that they:

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????????? Be orderly and organized

????????? Show facts with evidence

????????? Be direct and to the point

????????? Draw on your experience

????????? Be practical because?you are

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If you chose Intuition in the Information behavior dimension, you are terrific at coming up with creative solutions, marketing direction and “out of the box” ideas and when receiving information you prefer they:?

????????? Give you an overview

????????? Have a vision of the future

????????? Appeal to your imagination

????????? Encourage your need to explore

????????? Allow for the expansion of ideas

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When it comes to making a Decision, a Thinking person is logical, steps back and objectifies the decision, preferring to be treated this way:

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????????? Expect questions

????????? Use logic

????????? Be calm and reasonable

????????? Be brief, concise, yet thorough

????????? Present information for their analysis

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A Feeling person personalizes decisions asking, ?How does this affect me and the people involved??? This person likes you to remember to:

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????????? Be honest and sincere

????????? Be personal and friendly

????????? Share with them your feelings

????????? Encourage them to share their feelings

????????? Allow them time to know and trust you

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In the Action behavior dimension, the Judging person likes to control their environment and prefers that you:

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????????? Don?t disturb their order

????????? Be prepared and deliberate

????????? Value their time because they do

????????? Finalize whenever & wherever possible

????????? Take their deadlines seriously

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And, the Perceiving person values spontaneity above all and prefers that you:

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????????? Be open to options & changes

????????? Use variety in your approach

????????? Let them set their own deadlines

????????? Make use of their resourcefulness

????????? Encourage possibility-thinking

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Does this give you an idea of how to approach finding out your strengths and preferred way of being treated so that you can decide on the career that best suits you?? Continue studying Side 2 of the Wheel, determining your strengths and preferred way of being treated by others.? Once you have analyzed this information, identify the types of careers that include your preferences and strengths ? the way you like to be treated and are most comfortable.

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On the flip side of the Profile Sheet that matches your four-letter type, are a few of the careers that are suited for your strengths.? Take a look at these as they will give you a basis of thinking about and identifying other rewarding types of work.

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J/P ? Judging or Perceiving – How We Take Action

Monday, October 19th, 2009

J———————————–X———————————–P

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The fourth and final dimension of behavior in psychological type theory is how we prefer to take action.

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Judging types represent approximately 60% and Perceiving types about 40% of the U.S. population.

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Judging and Perceiving represent the two very different ways that people like to organize their world and live their lives.? In this context, the term Judging does not mean a person that is judgmental and the term perceiving does not mean that a person is perceptive.? These are the terms assigned to this dimension of behavior.? Perceiving refers to one?s innate drive to keep things open, to keep gathering information and Judging refers to a desire to come to conclusion and make a decision.? People with a Judging preference feel tension until an issue is decided and people with a Perceiving preference feel tension if pushed to make a decision too quickly.? The more important the decision is, the stronger the need to resolve the issue quickly for a person with Judging preference.??? ?

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Judging and Perceiving have a lot to do with the way we like to run our everyday lives and the greatest potential for conflict exists between couples with this dimension.? This is the only dimension that is different between me and my husband.? Roy, INTP, and I, INTJ, experienced a lot of confusion, tension and conflict around this fourth dimension of taking action.? We had been married just a few years when we were introduced to psychological type and were immediately riveted by the explanation in ?type theory? of why we were experiencing this tension.? We could be discussing something and I?d head for the phone to take action.? This completely unnerved him because of his need to investigate further, look for more information and check things out.?

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Another part of the differences in this dimension is Judging people want their living area organized and feel distracted living amid clutter, while Perceiving people tend to have a more casual attitude and often leave projects unfinished.? My INTP partner liked to file papers in stacks on the office floor and I preferred to file paperwork ? feeling everything should be put in its place.? Once we found out about our preference for Judging and Perceiving in this Action dimension, we understood what was causing the tension and were able to ?stretch ourselves? so that we could include each other?s ?comfort zone? in our expectations.

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Judgers are planners and like to be prepared.? They expect a set plan to be followed and often have difficulty shifting gears when the plan unexpectedly changes.? By contrast, Perceivers are hesitant to commit themselves for fear that if they do, they may miss some great opportunity that will come along later.? Perceivers act spontaneously and are flexible in adjusting to changes.?

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In the area of handling responsibilities, Judging people like to complete projects ahead of a deadline and it?s very hard for Judgers to relax and enjoy themselves when they haven?t finished something.? Perceivers are just the opposite, preferring to relax and take advantage of some unexpected opportunity because ?there?s always more time.?

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Because Judgers have such a need for closure, they tend to make a lot of declarative statements and state their strong opinions freely.? Perceivers ask a lot of questions and are more inquisitive.? This can be a source of irritation between couples and business associates.? Perceivers often feel that Judgers shut down discussions too quickly, and oversimplify.? Judgers sometimes find the endless questions from Perceivers to be redundant and annoying.?

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Judgers are more comfortable with the notion of rules and place high importance on following them, while Perceivers view rules as unwanted restrictions on their freedom and their ability to be spontaneous.? Judgers are more comfortable with authority while Perceivers are more naturally inclined to rebel against or question authority.

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When you factor in knowledge of personality type into how you take action, 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.??

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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.? Action is the fourth 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.

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T/F ? Thinking or Feeling – How We Make Decisions

Monday, October 12th, 2009

T———————————–X———————————– F

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

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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 don?t 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.

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

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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.?

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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.

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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.

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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.?

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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.?

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.?

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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.?

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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.

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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.??

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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.

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S/N ? Sensor or Intuitive – How we take in Information

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

S———————————–X————————————N

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The second dimension of behavior in psychological type theory is how we prefer to take in Information.

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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? Sensor or Intuitive, meaning they would? fall completely to the far left or right of the continuum, or a person could be more towards the middle, closer towards the fulcrum on 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 Information dimension, we don?t use each preference with equal ease.? Our inborn preference is our natural strength.

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Sensors take in information through their five senses ? what they see, hear, touch, taste, or smell.? Intuitives take in information through a ?sixth sense? ? not on what is, but what could be.? Sensors prefer facts to support their decisions and live in the ?here and now.?? Intuitives take in information by seeing the big picture, focusing on the relationships and connections between facts.? They are especially attuned to seeing new possibilities.? Sensors tend to think in a linear fashion, one thought following the next, and Intuitives frequently engage in leaps of thinking.? Sensors are more down-to-earth and Intuitives are imaginative and creative. Sensors often demonstrate their creativity by finding a new application for something that has already been invented.? This is because a Sensor tends to rely on his own or someone he trusts experience.

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Sensors are terrific at being able to focus on the details.? An example would be an airline pilot.? There are a myriad of dials and information to keep track of in the cockpit of an Boeing 737, not to mention the actual landing and taking off ability.? And, when it comes to an emergency, Sensors respond with the training they have experienced and solve the immediate problem.? Sensors, with their natural abilities to focus on facts and the ?here and? now?, make excellent pilots.?

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Intuitives are terrific at creating marketing direction because of their ability to look at patterns of information and determine a trend.? In 1992, a book titled, ?The Popcorn Report?, authored by Faith Popcorn predicted the rise of ?Cocooning? (the stay-at-home syndrome), and the phenomenon of ?Cashing Out,? where men and women leave the corporate rate race.? Faith also foresaw the demand for fresh foods, home delivery, and four-wheel drives, among many other predictions.? Faith is an example of an Intuitive at work on a grand scale.? With her unusual name and outspoken style, Faith Popcorn has become one of America?s most controversial and quoted market researchers.? Her BrainReserve company has served a long list of major clients, including IBM, McDonald?s, American Express, Eastman Kodak, Coca-Cola, Chevrolet, Campbell Soup and so forth.

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The gathering of Information dimension represents the greatest potential for differences between people, since it applies to our worldview.? For instance, I am an Intuitive and a couple of years ago did some marketing for a civil engineering company.? Most civil engineers prefer Sensing to take in information and when giving information relate it in terms of specific facts, numerical order and systemization.? When the engineers I worked with gave me information for a project, my brain literally froze and I couldn?t think until I translated the information through my Intuitive frame of reference.? I needed to know what we were trying to achieve and the purpose of the project.? Once that was clear, I was able to understand what to do with the facts and what information the engineers needed from me.? And, I?m sure that when I presented Information to the group of engineers I was working with, my tendency to describe the big picture without the facts leading up was just as confusing to them.? Sensors see the individual trees and Intuitives see the forest.? Sensors spend a lot of time describing detail and Intuitives can become impatient with this detail preferring the ?bottom line? approach to giving and receiving Information.

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When Sensors and Intuitives recognize what each other needs in the Information cycle, they can be powerful allies.? As members of a team, they can work together on projects creating both the long-term plan and handling the details with ease.? When we work in a field that allows us to use our ?natural strengths? we can be stress-free. ?Intuitives are the creators of a new approach, and Sensors are the people who make the idea work.

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Team composition of personality types is important and in general, diversity and balance in team member personality types is needed to produce successful team performance. A Sensing team leader may be more effective in keeping the team on task.? Intra-team communication will be more natural for the Sensor than the Intuitive.? Sensing types perceive the facts and can easily organize their thoughts for communication to the other team members.? Intuitives are terrific at creating solutions to problems.? The Intuitive?s natural ability at coming up with creative possibilities, future planning and marketing direction is a great strength for a team.?? ????????

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Entrepreneurs would benefit from understanding personality type and in particular the Information cycle.? Entrepreneurs tend to be Intuitives and it?s very easy for them to see the positive end results of the company they are creating without establishing the necessary steps of getting there successfully.? (Where are the sales, orders and the money?)

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When you factor in a knowledge of personality type into your thinking and planning, 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 information, point of view, and experience we are able to provide one another.??

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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.? Information is the second 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.

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Sensors represent approximately 65% and Intuitives about 35% of the American population.?

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E/I – Extravert or Introvert – How we get and direct our energy

Monday, October 5th, 2009

E———————————I————————————–I

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The first dimension of behavior in psychological type theory is how our Energy is gathered.

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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? Extravert meaning he?d fall completely to the left of the continuum or a person could be more towards the middle, meaning closer towards the fulcrum on the continuum.? We are, however, one or the other not both. Even though we use both preferences throughout our day, we don?t use each preference with equal ease.? Our inborn preference is our natural strength.

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Extraverts are energized from the outside world of people, places and things and Introverts are energized by their internal world of ideas, emotions and impressions.? Extraverts are energized by being around people and Introverts are drained by being around groups of people too much and need time alone to recharge.? Extraverts often feel they are the one to initiate contact while Introverts seem to hold back from initiating contact.?

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This preference is not gender based ? in other words there is no difference in the percentage of men and women who are Extraverts or Introverts.? It is the preference for one or the other that influences behavior, not the gender.

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Extraverts often tackle many projects at once and in their work style prefer an ?open door policy? and are seen out walking around the office.? Introverts discourage interruptions, prefer to work alone and like to immerse themselves in a project.? Extraverts are ?action oriented? taking on many different tasks at a time and Introverts prefer to work at a steadier pace, thinking through how they will do the job before they begin.?

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Extraverts like to think out loud and really need to talk something through in order to understand it, while Introverts prefer to carefully think things through and even mull them over.? This doesn?t mean that Introverts are shy.? To the contrary, their process is internal and observational.?

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All of this information seems very straightforward and helpful and so we may ask ourselves, ?So what??? Why are you spending time talking about this in an article?? I?ve observed a lot of friction and stress between people in business and personal relationships that can be easily solved with an understanding and use of psychological type theory.?

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For instance, regarding a couple I know that is on the verge of divorce (he is an Introvert and she is an Extravert), a lot of their communication problems could be solved by an understanding and application of personality type theory.

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The husband (whom I?ll call Art) is an Introvert.? Art is in business for himself and works alone out of the home.? His business is successful requiring intense concentration and focus as well as accuracy for large amounts of data.? Art cares deeply about people and tends to keep these opinions to himself.? Art is a very private person.

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The wife (Mary) is an Extravert and a ?stay at home? mom who is very active in her children?s life and their religion.? Mary tends to take on a lot of projects at once and likes to provide service for lots of people, taking her from the home a lot.? When Mary is involved in a project the whole family and house is involved, including the dog.? If someone calls that needs assistance, Mary jumps in the car and is off to provide.? Mary is happiest surrounded by lots of people and serves as the Activities Director for their Church requiring being a hostess for functions of up to 350+ people at a time.

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Art feels unappreciated by Mary and Mary thinks Art is too harsh because he seems to get stressed out and lose his temper easily.? How could an understanding of the behavior dimension of how our Energy is gathered assist Mary and Art in having a better relationship and eliminate a lot of the tension in their relationship?

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For one thing, just knowing that there is a difference between how each of them gathers their energy and what that means will be amazingly freeing in how they interact.? The common way people interact is to project their way of behaving onto others.? We look through our lens of behavior and expectation at others and expect and/or judge them if they don?t behave likewise.

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If Art was informed about Extraverts and how they are energized outside of themselves, he would know that Mary requires interaction with others in order to relate to the world.? He would understand that if Mary spends too much time alone, she can get depressed.? And, if Mary was informed about Introverts, she would understand that Art requires time alone to plan his day, work his plan and ?think? about his work.? Mary would know that Art finds it tiring and draining to constantly be around and interacting with a group of people.? He likes to plan and schedule the time he spends socially.? Mary would understand that if Art is pushed into too much Extraverting, he is likely to become stressed-out and lose his patience/temper.?

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I?m an Introvert and didn?t find this out until I was in my early 40?s.? As I learned more about my preference for being energized as an Introvert, I began to manage my activities making sure that I had time alone for reflection and thinking things through.? I suffered from tension headaches all of my life that always lasted two to three days at a time – every week.? When I became educated about type, I realized that all of the ?Extraverting? I was doing, because I thought that was what you were supposed to do in life, created physical stress and was the reason I was getting these crippling headaches.? In fact, once I planned my interaction with people better, the headaches stopped.? I haven?t had such a headache now in over a decade.? And, my health is excellent in large part, because of being able to manage my activities through the knowledge of how I gather Energy and making sure that I don?t overextend myself through my interaction with other people.?

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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.? Energy is the first dimension and all four are equally important.? Having knowledge and understanding of our preferences and the preferences in each of the four dimensions of our loved ones and associates can profoundly affect the quality of our life and relationships.?

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The percentage of Extraverts is 50% and the percentage of Introverts is 50% in the United States.

WHY PERSONALITY TYPE IN RELATIONSHIPS?

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

The greatest overall benefit of knowing about psychological-type theory, is to be able to stand back and realize people do what they do because of their natural process.? By knowing this, we can begin to eliminate our expectations on another person?s behavior.? This alone, solves a myriad of interaction problems.

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Once you understand your type and your partner?s type, it?s time to see how you and your partner mesh.? The first step toward creating a satisfying relationship is to understand ourselves.? The next is to be more aware of the ways we naturally and automatically, interact with our partners.? Then, we can learn how to make some minor adjustments in our styles to be more accommodating and appreciative of each other.?

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DO OPPOSITES REALLY ATTRACT?

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Many couples ? about 35%? have only two type preferences in common.? About 25% have one preference in common, 20 % have three and only 10% are either different on all four or alike on all four dimensions.? Just because you and your partner may be very different doesn?t mean you can?t have a satisfying relationship.? You may simply have to work harder to achieve understanding and satisfaction.?

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The greatest opportunities for personal growth come from loving someone who is quite different.? On some level, we?re drawn to our partners precisely because of those differences.? We see things in them we don?t have in ourselves.? We are stimulated to try things we might not ordinarily try, encouraged to open up and share on a deeper level than before, or slow down and have more fun than we normally allow ourselves.?

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As Carl Jung wrote, ?The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances; if there is any reaction, both are transformed.?? Indeed, Mr. Jung believed that through the marital and family unit, we could transform ourselves to a greater spiritual level.

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Bear in mind that no one combination is either perfect or automatically doomed to failure.? There are strengths within each type combination.? While every couple faces challenges based in a great part on their type preferences, every relationship also is as unique as the two people in it.

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AN ESTJ & ENFP PARENTING CHALLENGE

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The three type dimensions that are most often the source of parenting disagreements are:

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GATHERING INFORMATION ? Sensing or Intuition

MAKING DECISIONS ? Thinking or Feeling

TAKING ACTION ? Judging or Perceiving

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Jake is an ESTJ and Maureen is an ENFP.? As such they have different temperaments and values.? Jake takes his job as father very seriously.? He believes it?s his duty to raise responsible, polite, independent children.? He?s the disciplinarian, establishing and enforcing the rules of the house with calm consistency.? Jake?s kids will tell you that he?s strict and demanding but that he shows his devotion to his kids by being an enthusiastic coach and never misses a swim meet, dance recital, or school play.? Maureen is more concerned about her children?s emotional well-being and self-esteem.? She wants them to develop as unique individuals and strive to find personal meaning in their lives.? She?s clearly the fun parent, the nurturer, who is less worried about bedtimes and rules and more concerned about helping the children articulate their feelings and grow into compassionate and tolerant adults.? For the most part, Jake and Maureen complement each other well, but they also have their share of disagreements about everything from how hard to push the kids academically to whether to pay them for doing chores.? This hurdle is not insurmountable, but it is a strain on their relationship; it gives them one more thing to disagree and argue about.? Fortunately, knowing about their types ? and their children?s types ? has helped them figure out strategies to be more cohesive as a team and more sensitive and effective with their children.

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