It’s all in the mind…

  I posted back in February about something called Cognitive Distortions.  Basically, those pre-programmed reactions formed from previous experiences, which drive our future reactions to situations.  If you’re aware of them, you can do something about them, by re-framing the way you see/digest or internalise things.

I was reminded of how diferently we all see the world just recently whilst doing some reviews.  Taking a look back at some personality profiles that I’d had done on some key individuals showed how differently people communicate, process information and think.  Just because I can think and talk at the same time, it doesn’t mean somebody else can.  It makes them no better or worse than me, we just do things differently.

A great example of this can be seen in brainstorming sessions.  If you put a roomful of people together, don’t be surprised if some people look they are generating far more ideas than some others, it’s just how they’re wired.  Other people in the room can generate those same valid ideas, but may need a little longer, or pre-notice, or a couple additional days after to process and think.  Until you start to appreciate such matters, you may not get the full potential of your team, assuming that one communication style fits all – it doesn’t.

We use the Meyers-Briggs profiling system, of which there are sixteen characteristic profile types.  What’s amazing when you ask your team to do it, is that you get that “aha” moment, when you begin to understand why some people are highly organised, some disorganised.  Some introvert, some extrovert, some ideas people, some reflectors.  The bottom line is that there is a huge variety of personalities out there, some more common than others, and all subject to change based upon personal circumstances (personal pressure etc).

The lesson is this, you can’t to use the same style with everyone to get the same outcomes.  If you can adapt your style, by having a deeper understanding of your own personal style and the style of others, it can lead to really meaningful interactions across your team.  If you want to understand more about how you can use profiling to enhance performance, give Impact Consulting Psychologists a shout, I’ve worked with them for years and would thoroughly recommend their approach.