Archive for November, 2010

A Great Destroyer of Teamwork – The Fundamental Attribution Error

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

We human beings have a tendency to falsely attribute the negative behaviors of others to their character, while attributing our own negative behaviors to environmental factors.

In other words, if I see a woman being impatient with her children at the grocery store and giving them a swat, I think, ?that is a mean woman.?? While, when my own kids are driving me crazy and arguing with me and I give them a swat, I think, ?I?ve got some really unruly children.?

We tend to like to believe that we do bad things because of the situations we are in, but somehow we assume that others do bad things because they are predisposed to being bad.

In the same way, we often attribute other people?s success to their environment and our own success to our character.? That?s because we like to believe that we are inherently good and talented, while others are merely lucky, beneficiaries of good fortune.

This fundamental attribution error often creates misunderstanding and distrust among team members.? By getting to know one another better and understanding our personality tendencies, team members can often avoid this problem.

Personality-type training can eliminate the ?Fundamental Attribution Error.?

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) & Personality Type

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

The Characteristics of Emotional Intelligence*

  • Self-awareness
  • Emotional management ? being aware of your emotions and how you play those out
  • Motivation ? being able to defer gratification
  • Interpersonal sensitivity ? empathy with other people
  • Ability to influence others
  • Intuitiveness ? the ability to make a decision when you don?t have all the data by drawing on deep experience
  • Consciousness ? that is linked to integrity

?Emotional intelligence (EQ) is really a combination

The PEOPLE Process Wheel

of a few things,? says Professor Malcolm J. Higgs. ?What makes you behave the way you do, what are the consequences? What happens to your behaviors? If you are angry you can?t change being angry but you can understand that you become irrational or deal badly with others when you are angry. It?s understanding all that and based on that understanding having the ability to be able to do something about it,? he explains.

?Part of it is, for want of a better word, self-awareness: Let me be self-aware, let me know how my emotions impact on my behaviors. Secondly, let me try and manage that and use that knowledge to become more effective and the third piece is to understand how other people react to situations and why they may be behaving the way they do and then try to adapt my behavior to try and take that into account,? he says.

Successful leaders tend to be equipped with strong social skills and, in fact, a wide body of research shows that leaders have high levels of EQ, but not all entrepreneurs do. People won?t develop EQ unless they want to or are motivated to do so. It?s not a matter of having or not having EQ ? you just need to want to improve. EQ training is about understanding people, and getting them on your side through influence and persuasion.

Emotional intelligence is a term used to describe a complex ability to regulate your impulses, empathize with others, and persist and be resilient in the face of obstacles. Developing your emotional intelligence will help you enhance your leadership abilities, enrich your relationships, extend your influence, and expand the personal resources you can call on to manage life?s mental demands.

An in-depth study and thorough understanding of psychological type can aid in the development of your emotional intelligence. Psychological type, as developed by Dr. Carl Jung, explores people?s preferences for four mental processes ? Sensing, Intuition, Thinking, and Feeling ? and their tendency to focus more on the outer (Extraverted) or inner (Introverted) world. These mental processes and orientations work in a dynamic way to influence what people see and evaluate in life, and this dynamic affects all their choices and actions.

When you learn to appropriately access the eight mental processes that make up the model of psychological type, you achieve a level of understanding that offers a practical way to expand your emotional intelligence by enabling you to become more conscious of choices you can make to be effective. The mental processes of Sensing, Intuition, Thinking, and Feeling differ markedly when Extraverted and Introverted. These differences result in the eight mental functions we use to take in information and decide how to respond to that information. Our preferences among these eight mental functions are what produce our type. The four letter code gives us direction about our preferences.

These eight areas of awareness represent the eight mental functions of psychological type. Getting in touch with your use of these eight aspects of your mental operations is a major step toward greater self-awareness and interpersonal awareness, which enriches your emotional intelligence. We each use all these processes in Extraverted and Introverted forms, but we tend to rely most heavily on our dominant and auxiliary, or our most preferred, functions.

Using some of the functions comes more naturally to you, but part of developing your type involves being able to access each of these functions in the appropriate situation. Doing so enables you to increase the range of behaviors available, representing a significant step toward greater personal efficacy and emotional intelligence.

These eight functions make up the engine of your personality. They provide the source of analysis, reaction, adjustment, and stability in your character on which you can depend. The most complete depiction of these eight functions is in the dynamic relationship that exists each moment in the exchange of energy between you and those around you.

Personality, emotional intelligence, and performance are interdependent factors in your daily experience. When you have an expanded emotional intelligence and a balanced personality, you have a healthier lifestyle, stronger relationships, and overall greater satisfaction and performance in your chosen work. Studies conclude that strong emotional intelligence among leaders aids employee retention, productivity, and performance. Those leaders who consistently exhibit sensitivity to the range of needs and individual differences in their organizations get the best performance results.

Why Personality Type in Relationships?

Monday, November 8th, 2010

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.?

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.

DO OPPOSITES REALLY ATTRACT?

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.

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.

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.

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.

AN ESTJ & ENFP PARENTING CHALLENGE

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

GATHERING INFORMATION ? Sensing or Intuition

MAKING DECISIONS ? Thinking or Feeling

TAKING ACTION ? Judging or Perceiving

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.

Psychological Type and How It Benefits an Organization

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

Psychological type is a theory of personality developed by Swiss psychiatrist Dr. Carl G. Jung to explain the normal differences between healthy people. Jung concluded that differences in behavior result from people?s inborn tendencies to use their minds in different ways. Jung?s type theory defines patterns of normal behavior, or types, and gives an explanation of how types develop.?

The PEOPLE Process Type Wheel

The mother and daughter team of Myers & Briggs further developed Jung?s theory creating the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator?, a self-report questionnaire designed to make Jung?s theory of psychological types understandable and useful in everyday life. After more than 50 years of research and development, the MBTI? is the most widely used instrument with more than two million indicators administered annually in the United States.

The PEOPLE Process takes type theory a step further making it ?useable?, simplifying the understanding and application of what often is a complicated process for people to work with. With all of the breadth and depth of the theory of Dr. Carl Jung and the MBTI?, The PEOPLE Process Wheel takes the theory of the four behavioral dimensions of how Energy is focused, how Information is gathered, how Decisions are made and how Action is taken and makes them easy to remember and use. Within each behavioral dimension, are two opposite poles ? preferences ? for which everyone has a natural preference (inborn strength) for one of the two opposites in each of the four behavioral dimensions.

As we use our preferences, we develop what the research defines as our psychological type: an underlying personality pattern resulting from the dynamic interaction of our four preferences, environmental influences and our own choices. People tend to develop behaviors, skills, and attitudes associated with their type, and those with types that differ from yours, will likely be opposite you in many ways. Each type represents a valuable and reasonable way to be. Each type has its own potential strengths, as well as its likely blind spots.

Psychological type has been applied as a tool for many years by a variety of users including those in:

  • Small businesses and large multinational corporations
  • Service industries and manufacturing concerns
  • Consulting and training services
  • Government at all levels
  • Established firms and new entrepreneurial ventures
  • Educational and health-care institutions

In general, psychological type functions as a tool that helps people in organizations:

  • Understand themselves and their behaviors
  • Appreciate others so as to make constructive use of individual differences
  • Approach problems in different yet healthy ways and thus be more productive

Specifically, organizations use type to:

  • Make the most of their human resources
  • Leverage individuals? natural strengths
  • Improve teamwork
  • Understand and adapt to differences in leadership/management style
  • Enhance effective communications between supervisors, peers, employees, and customers
  • Assist in career development
  • Resolve conflict
  • Coach individuals
  • Design training activities
  • Recognize employees? unique contributions
  • Develop skills in creativity, time management, and stress management

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