Managing Different Personalities in Your Team

Every work place is made up of a range of people who are different in many ways. Each person has unique strengths, weaknesses and personality traits that make the work place an interesting place to be.

From the manager’s perspective, learning to work effectively with people who are different to your self is often the biggest challenge to overcome.

One of the keys to effective management is the ability to understanding what makes each person in your team “tick”. This knowledge is essential for building an effective team. Managers who are able to harness the capabilities of each individual team member have a greater chance of building the team culture and building the foundations for success.

How much you can learn about each team member depends on how you manage people and how much direct contact you have with them. It is much easier to really get to know people if you have just 3 team members rather than 30 direct reports. Similarly it’s easier to get to know people if you work alongside them rather than managing them remotely.

But even if the situation for getting to know your team members isn’t ideal, you can still establish a feel for the type of people in your team based on their approach and work place behaviours. No two employees are the same and it's important for you to be tolerant of , and learn to work effectively with, individual personalities and preferences.

It's your job as a manager to identify who in your team are under-performing and why this is the case as well as knowing what it is that makes your best performer great at their job so you can replicate these characteristics across the wider team.

Ultimately your aim is to keep every team member motivated and productive. By knowing what type of personalities you have in your team you will be able to adapt the management style you use so that you achieve the most positive outcomes with each team member irrespective of their personality type.

In the next blog in this series we will take a look at the different personality types that can be found in most workplaces and how you can get the best from each type.