Carly complains that working with Tyler is difficult because Tyler’s bug reports often omit details important in the proper replication of bugs. Meanwhile, Tyler complains that Carly’s testing jumps around features with “no rhyme or reason.” Her reports communicate so much detail that it’s easy to lose the big picture of what she’s trying to accomplish. Further, Tyler says, Carly always wants to run more tests, while Carly feels Tyler pressures her to declare the testing complete too early.
Is Carly wise, or is Tyler wise?
Neither, or both?
What is happening here? Is this dissent and disagreement just corporate drama? Or are these different preferences something good in disguise, if only we knew how to harness the benefits?
We recognize diversity as beneficial in the workplace, something we embody in our non-discrimination policies. But we do not extend our appreciation of diversity to the variety of personality types.
That’s where Carl Jung comes in. Jung observed that the human mind is busy either perceiving or deciding the world, and that people have innate preferences on performing these two key activities, as well as whether they direct their energy to the inside or outside world.
Then, in the 1940s, Katharine Briggs and her daughter Isabel Myers developed Jung’s view into a practical tool for understanding ourselves and others. That tool grew to today’s MBTI®, an assessment tool whose output is a four-letter code of a person’s preferences.
Through each of the resulting 16 possible permutations, we can know (1) our attitude towards the external and internal worlds, (2) our preferences on perceiving information, (3) our preferences on deciding/judging information, and (4) our preference between perceiving and judging.
These preferences are at the heart of all problem-solving, and thus can easily create conflict at the workplace. Knowing how to benefit from this diversity can avoid productivity loss, resulting in better-functioning teams.
Want to benefit from Myers-Briggs Types? Join Leo Hepis at STPCon 2015 in Massachusetts, where we will use MBTI® as part of our exploration to understand ourselves and our coworkers.
Because the activities in the workshop are interactive, you must register ASAP to guarantee a spot in this small (~20 people) workshop*. Be sure to select “Understanding Ourselves, Understanding Others” with Leo Hepis.
*Workshop registration required.