How often do your mornings start like this, you arrive in work with the best intentions to be productive, but before you know it, it’s lunchtime and you haven’t achieved a thing. If like me you have a preference for structural thinking, you may wonder why this happens. I hadn’t realised until recently that my behaviours also play a part in how I prefer to deal with things. For example, I have a tendency to be 3/3rd flexible. This means that my willingness to accommodate the thoughts and actions of others is on the 95th percentile; I welcome change readily which can also mean that I get distracted easily too. If I even attempt to start my day without a work in progress list, then as a 3/3rd flexible I know I haven’t a hope in achieving anything tangible.
Working in an office environment means that we all need to flex our behaviours from time to time to enable us to get the most out of each other and ourselves. Our behaviours show up in different ways, depending upon our tendencies for expressiveness, assertiveness and flexibility.
Managing the differing spectrum of behaviours doesn’t have to be tricky, for example in meetings, if you allow ‘1/3 expressives’ time to reflect on something, then you’ll more likely get their best ideas. If you can encourage ‘3/3rd assertives’ to listen more then that allows time for others to speak.
I recently hosted a meeting of minds session with a senior leadership team. All but one of the team were 3/3rd expressive, this team had worked together for over 10 years and it wasn’t until that day that everyone realised why it was that Mikes brilliant ideas always came later. As a 1/3 expressive, he preferred to have time to reflect on his thoughts and ideas before sharing them. I wonder how many brilliant ideas are lost each day because we don’t understand each other’s unique strengths.
How we think and how we have behave emerge from our genetic blueprint and when we understand the powerful combination of our unique strengths I believe we can be much smarter and unlock endless amounts of potential.