Thank you for hanging around the past four months while I had fun with this series, Why Do They Do That? Every one of us has a view of OUR OWN world. My intention has been to share key tidbits so that we have a glimpse of how OTHERS view the world. The four types of people that I have described in the series are: The Bold and Blunt, the Social Animals, the Steady and Supportive and the Data Driven. These four types are only the tip of the ‘social style’ iceberg. There are blends of styles (I am half Social Animal, half Steady and Supportive) and to varying degrees.
The point is to encourage you to see the world beyond your own personal view, to engage with people in a way that speaks to you both. My passion is inter-personal communication so this information brings me JOY – primarily because I now have more fun! I no longer avoid or tip-toe around certain styles and I know when to be a bit more sensitive, direct, conscientious, detail-oriented…the list goes on. I also know considerably more about myself and what makes me tick (or ticked).
I recently had the pleasure of being with a fantastic group of people at a multi-day workshop; there were ten of us in all. I decided to watch how they each interacted from the beginning of the first day until the end of the last day. What a trip! It was an interesting observation point…for me it was like a temporary human zoo.
I would venture to say that everyone in the group was a blend of social styles. [It is important to note that although we are all a blend of the styles, primarily we have one or two very dominant styles.] I didn’t have any penguin-tiger mixes but I had three Data-Driven – Steady/Supportive combos, FIVE Steady/Supportive – Social Animals, and two Bold/Blunt – Social Animals. What a motley crew (or ‘crue’ – depends on your teenage decade)! For three days I was able to practice my adaptive prowess as I watched and trained these great creatures.
- No matter what ‘style’ a person, everyone has a desire to do well and make a difference.
- Style characteristics are not meant to pigeon-hole or be an excuse for behavior.
- The most important thing in interacting with all styles is to treat everyone with dignity and respect, no matter what!
Zookeepers Log for all Species:
- Give any style a mirror and support them to come up with their own path for improvement.
- ALWAYS point to something that is going well – where improvement is noted – and balance out with strategies for further development.
- Feed and water often – both physically and emotionally.
Humans are a complex species: We have opposable thumbs (dogs everywhere are envious), we blush, and we have a large variety of emotions, habits and tolerance levels. Human viewing is fascinating but human interaction is a rich and wonderful experience – and it can be done with a lot more ease if you are willing to learn more about your fellow animals (or co-workers). I released this particular group back to the wild and wished them well.
If you need a refresher on the series, review the earlier posts below. Consider it a season pass to my zoo!
(image credit: renjith krishnan)