Scarcity of personnel requires more personal attention. From the team leader and within the team. How do you bring out the best in each other? The MBTI test (Jung) provides insight into a person's natural talent. In this article I make a link with the TV series The A-team: a team that solves problems together via "don't talk, just do it ". It's no coincidence that the A-team cast was based on the four temperaments in this article. In which of the A-team members do you recognize yourself and your colleagues?
WHEN TO APPLY?
The insights in this article are helpful:
- In the recruitment & selection of new team members: more of the same or a mix of authentic personalities?
- For teams that do not yet make much use of each other's qualities and creativity: how to challenge them to collaboration and top performance?
- When leading professionals: what should I do to motivate and retain people?
- In mutual conflicts and miscommunication: how do we differ in our natural talents, where is the 'on-button' of the other?
DO THE TEST
What gives you energy? Are you more of a concrete doer or creative thinker? Do you prefer to work alone or together? Which activities do not cost you any effort? The answers to those questions determine your natural temperament.
BA, THE GUARDIAN ANGEL
Guardian Angels are real go-getters with a penchant for perfection in execution and high quality. They do what they promise and love to get things under control. Are you such a guardian angel? Then you recognize yourself in words such as: concrete, practical, orderly, caring, reliable, efficient, dutiful and finisher. Just like B.A. in the A team.
Pitfall: does not dare to involve others, does everything himself, has doubts about 'can I do it?' and wants everything to go according to the rules. no surprises.
Motivation tip: let them train new people, explain how things works.
HANNIBAL, THE FIREFIGHTER
Firefighters get a kick out of action, scoring and winning. They need little preparation and thinking time before taking action. They ensure a positive team spirit and have no problem taking the lead. Are you such a firefighter? Then you recognize yourself in words such as: crisis, spontaneous, goals, energetic, team leader and just-do-it. Just like Hannibal in the A-team.
Pitfall: forgetting to prepare properly, sometimes taking unnecessary risks, finding it difficult to account for the approach. Judge me on the result!
Tip for motivation: give them a stage, challenging goals and the freedom to score.
FACE, THE BRIDGEBUILDER
Bridge builders are good at establishing contacts, personal attention and meaningful relationships. In the face of mutual friction and uncertainty, these people are able to realize trust and connection. Great interest in everyone's life path. Are you such a bridge builder? Then you recognize yourself in words such as: personal, spiritual, giving, idealist, calm, inspiring and relationship-oriented. Just like Face in the A-team.
Pitfall: takes a lot of time to connect with others, finds it difficult to do things alone and make choices. sometimes loses sight of the measurable result.
Tip for motivation: emphasize ideals, work together, ask about their people skills.
MURDOCH, THE INVENTOR
Inventors are strong in analysis and logic and want to develop new things. The more complex, the better. Coming up with solutions that are ahead of the time. Are you such an inventor? Then you recognize yourself in words like: thinking big, experimental, visionary and innovative. Crazy or genius, just like Murdoch from the A-Team.
Pitfall: can get stuck in vision, ideals and ideas. quickly finds others a bit stupid, can be pushy and is convinced of his own right.
Tip for motivation: ask for their vision of the future and let them work with wizkids from other fields. Connect them to a practical project manager.
More info about the underlying MBTI test:
- S+J = guardian angel (45% of Western society)
- S+P = fire fighter (25% of Western society)
- N+F = bridge builder (20% of Western society)
- N+T = inventor (10% of Western society)
What is smart to do if you want to get started with team play? These steps are useful for team leaders, but also within the team.
- Let people characterize themselves. What natural talent is hidden in you?
- Ask team members to provide feedback on each other's unique abilities. Positive.
- Compliment everyone's contribution to results. Serious and specific.
- Ask team members how they can leverage their unique talents even more.
- Practice team play. Be passionate. Ask for help. Thank others.
Be positive and personal. So that people feel seen, valued. When you start with that, there’s a base to start talking about improvements, how things can be (even) better.
DO IT ALONE OR TOGETHER?
You are the only one who can change your team into an A-team. You have to practice, laugh, and celebrate successes. Not just as a manager. As a team member you can also decide to get started with it. Tip: don't be too hard in your communications and don’t ask others to change. Focus on maximizing job satisfaction for all.
If you think about hiring a team coach, ask him/her to provide all team members with insights in their natural temperament, skills and unique qualities. After that, a coach can contribute to effectively asking and giving feedback and a positive ‘yes we can’ mindset.
Check out A*Life's Academy for a workshop, coaching or team building.
BY: HAROLD SMITS
Harold Smits is a psychological economist and likes to make complex matters simple, interactive and personal. From change processes and marketing innovation to team flow and personalities. He was the first to transform the MBTI test into a 45-minute live assessment, in which hundreds of people simultaneously gained insight into their natural talents. Interactive through a dynamic assessment, easy for everyone, personal and fun. He uses this approach with great success in coaching, teambuilding and as a speaker for large groups.