Last month, we hosted a chapter meeting to discuss the different personality types and how to communicate in business. We invited guest speaker Karen Sims, the Vice President of People and Development at Dixon Schwabl Advertising in Rochester, NY.
Karen comes from a background in PR, which transitioned into a career in human resources when she discovered her love for internal culture efforts and assessment. Following this passion, she introduced ‘Companies are people, too,’ a culture quiz that is administered on a company wide basis to determine personal overall culture personality types. This personality assessment generates a Myers-Briggs personality type for each individuals at Dixon Scwhabl, which they post outside their doors with a list of recommended communication practices. As a company, Dixon Schwabl is ENFJ- The Enthusiast, by no surprise given their energetic and fun culture. Ultimately, this assessment is used to celebrate everyone as individuals.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is a personality assessment that classifies individuals as an indication of basic preferences. Based on the test results, each individuals is given a 4-letter personality type. The first digit labels E or I, based on your level of extroversion or introversion. This indicates how one recharges; whether you gain energy from being around others as an extrovert, or by being alone as an introvert. The second letter indicates how one handles situations with an S for sensing, or a P for perception. Third, we examine a person’s approach to getting information or facts and label it either J for judging, or F for feeling.
To better understand our own personalities and that of our peers, we decided to take the assessment ourselves! Each member in attendance took the test at 16personalities.com, and we took a moment to discuss.
Many of our members were shocked by the accuracy of their results. As we discussed, we explained our own preferences based on our personality types, and compared them to learn more about the various perspectives. We also discovered that some people’s types do not necessarily correlate with how others perceive them. For example, one member who was seemingly extroverted by the opinion of his peers, resulted to be introverted!
Understanding the different types of personalities and their preferences, we discussed communication and leadership tactics. As business communicators, we need to understand how to best approach situations with many different types of people. We learned that sometimes, we need to work in different ways with different people to accomplish the same goals. Karen Sims enlightened us with how this has benefited the culture at Dixon Schwabl, and we were glad to share this perspective with our members to take into their own professional experiences!
Thank you to Karen Sims for leading this session, and all of the members who attended with interest and energy!
Written by Alexandra Hristodouloul, Chapter Co-President 2016