Better understanding personality types to build a better team

Key to being a successful entrepreneur is running a successful team. Management is about more than just delegation and direction setting however and, for those willing to invest the time, paying close attention to personality types can be a key tool when it comes to building an effective team.

Being able to effectively identify the characteristics and personality types of an individual can help you glean insights into their core competencies, key strengths and weaknesses. This, in turn, can help you understand where your staff are best placed, ultimately creating a better, more strategic team.

So, what kind of personality types can you expect to find in your team, and how can you manage them in a way that maximises success?

The importance of understanding your team

There are many credible theories that highlight the importance of distinctly defined roles within a team. The right pairing of personality types can help individuals work better together – complementing each other’s strengths and supporting their weaknesses.

Received wisdom indicates that a high-performing team is comprised of both distinctly defined roles and a well-rounded collection of personality archetypes. Here’s a guide to 7 personality types that complete a successful team.

The leader

Leaders take ownership of situations in the workplace, help mediate conflicts and ensure that projects stay on course. There is a significant body of research exploring the powerful impact that leadership personalities can have in a business. To identify these individuals within your team look for those who are strong communicators and, crucially, who can motivate others.

The collaborator

Collaborators are at their best when they are pooling resources and working with others to complete a shared goal. They may not forge a path, but collaborators are excellent team players and can help mediate conflicts and accentuate other personality types.

To find a collaborator in your team, look for the individuals who value teamwork above individual action.

The researcher

Researchers dig deep to try and get to the heart of an issues. They try to find the meaningful data and information which can become the basis for better decisions. Researchers are good at asking questions and finding solutions and tend to have a keen eye for detail, which can help with things like quality checks or planning for future projects.

You will find researchers by identifying people that drill into problems as they search for answers to challenging questions.

The creative

Creative individuals are excellent to have in a team environment because they bring fresh ideas to the table. Creativity in business is vital. It can help you stand out from the crowd and find inspiration when things get tough.  

Lots of research points to the importance of encouraging creatives in the workplace. Creatives are often excellent at planning out concepts, visualising how projects should be implemented and offering unique and imaginative ideas. To find the creative type in your team, try to identify someone that is unorthodox with their ideas and offers new approaches to working.

Identifying the right personality types for your business can be key to its success, and hopefully this article has given you one or two ideas about how to begin doing this. Stay tuned for a subsequent article in which I will look at how, once you’ve identified the personality types within your team, you can start utilising their strengths to build a better team.