As you move along in your career, there’s no doubt you’ll meet a plethora of people throughout the process. It is inevitable that you will encounter some individuals who you easily get along with and some you may not see eye-to-eye with.
This could be the result of having a different outlook on life or going about solving a problem a different way. Everyone is different. Yet, when you work around the same people on a day-to-day basis, it is important to put these differences aside and work together.
I’m sure you’ve heard of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) by now yet I don’t think people use it enough to harness success in their career. It is essentially a questionnaire developed by Carl Jung that defines your personality type. In the end, you are categorized in 4 different areas: Extroverted/Introverted, Sensing/Intuition,Thinking/Feeling, Judging/Perceiving. If you’re wondering what this has to do with your career… Well, considering every single job involves effort on your part combined with interaction with other people around you, it has a huge impact on creating success in your career.
Knowing your Myers-Briggs Type will give you a better sense of your quirks, strengths, and weaknesses, and provide insight as to how you can improve a work environment and work better with others. Here’s how.
Know Your Personality
Firstly, you should begin with knowing your own personality type. The 16 Personalities is an amazing resource if you are unsure of your MBTI. The first time I took this questionnaire, I was shocked at how accurate my results were because it literally described me to a tee. I have even taken it more than once just to make sure my results were accurate!
Even understanding how you operate is hugely beneficial to yourself too. For instance, if you are defined as a “feeling” type, it means you tend to use personal values and emotions to make decisions. This is certainly not a bad thing, however, being more aware of this idea helps when you need to make decisions that cannot rely on feeling alone.
For reference, I’m INFJ – the rarest of the personalities! My weaknesses include easy burnout, sensitivity, and private. Knowing this allows me to spend time alone when I can to re-energize myself. It also forces me to try to be more open to others because trust is always a huge part of teamwork. I can also leverage my strengths to find success faster. Funnily enough, one of the strengths of an INFJ is the innate ability to write in an inspiring way. Now you guys already know I’ve turned this into my career!
What does this have to do with others? Just being aware of the fact that there a multitude of other personality types out there, allows you to be more open and understanding with the people you are in direct contact with on a daily basis. A person with “judging” tendencies naturally needs to be more prepared and have his or her schedule laid out. Whereas, a “perceiving” type is more flexible and open to spontaneity.
Have a Team Mindset
Now that you know your own personality type and are aware of the other options, it is time to put this knowledge to test. Encourage your co-workers to share their own MBTI. With these in mind, it can be easier to do things such as set up meetings and work on projects with your peers. It will also allow you to appreciate diversity and the fact that everyone brings a unique asset to the table. In the end, it can open up new and better ways to collaborate, communicate and increase efficiency as you adapt new ways to interact and work together.
What’s your personality type?
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