Personality type divergence is one of the key challenges a manager must overcome to achieve effective performance and cohesion. The work habits, styles, and preferences of each individual can significantly influence the overall dynamics of the organisation’s members.

That said, there are certain solutions that can help reconcile the different personalities of your team members and establish a satisfying and productive work environment: keep reading to learn more!

Getting to know the team

Understanding the personality types within your company is essential for improving your team management. And to do this, you must start by getting to know your team members.

This will allow you to :

  • Know the preferred working mode of each team member;
  • Discover and analyse their modes of operation;
  • Find the right way to delegate tasks;
  • Identify the needs for soft skills development;
  • Determine the member whose personality is best suited to a specific task.

All this information will allow for a relevant and objective association of team member profiles.

It’s common for team managers to place several employees on the same project due to the similarities between their personalities. But, in most cases, this type of association produces the opposite effect since their personalities are too similar to work in a complementary manner.

Promoting effective communication

Communication is an important aspect if you wish to reconcile different personality types within your company and establish effective team management.

To communicate effectively, you should favour open and honest discussions with your team.

Whether you opt for individual interviews or meetings, it is important that the sessions are structured so that all employees have equal speaking time for each topic discussed. This provides the opportunity for you to listen to their concerns, goals, ideas, and suggestions.

The various concerns raised by your team should not be subjected to undesirable criticism. If you have contributions to make, ensure they are formulated in a constructive and encouraging manner.

The goal of the communication is not only to stimulate a collaborative environment despite the differences in  personality types of your team members, but also to facilitate the management of your team.

Leveraging the strengths of each personality type

Within a team, certain personality types are more suited to certain tasks than others. For example, a member competent in data analysis is not necessarily competent to manage a project that requires creativity.

The ideal situation is to establish an approach and a plan that aims to leverage the strengths of each team member. By encouraging employees to make the most of their strengths, they will feel more valued and will be much more motivated to provide additional effort.

Determining the strengths of employees is also very important in the context of internal mobility. This allows you to know which team member is qualified for the position to be filled.

Adapting your management style to individual needs

To lead your team to work in harmony despite the divergence of their personality types, you must adapt your management style to each of their needs.

Some team members may need close supervision whereas others may feel much more productive when given autonomy.

Unlike delegative management which gives full autonomy to employees, adaptive management considers the expectations, needs, and all other specificities of team members. The idea here is to be flexible and truly include the team in decision-making.

Although applying this management style can be complicated, increasing your relationship with your team and establishing inclusive and effective communication can help.

Building a positive work environment

The quality of the work environment directly influences the attitude of employees, and their performance at work. A pleasant, positive, and dynamic work environment promotes the engagement and investment of your team members.

To establish this work environment, you must consider various aspects:

The work setting

Here, it is about establishing a pleasant and productive work setting. This includes providing the necessary physical equipment (furniture, work tools) and remote-working policies. 

Moreover, workspaces must be optimally lit. Amenities like relaxation rooms encourage socialisation and collaboration among employees.

Improving these elements will bring out the best parts of your team member’s personalities, and improve overall team management.  

The conditions and responsibilities associated with each position

To build a pleasant work environment, HR managers must also ensure the well-being of employees. It is important that their general skills (soft skills) and their personalities match the responsibilities of their positions.

Moreover, the company should offer flexibility by promoting flexible and home working so that employees achieve a balance between their professional life and personal life.

This will not only help limit conflicts related to the divergence of personality types but also reduce burdens associated with team management.

The company culture

A healthy and inclusive company culture gives the same value to all employees. It aims to establish an environment of collaboration, inclusion, and equity. It promotes gender equality, respects and values each member.

Promoting the values of the company, shared moments between collaborators, and team building activities are some actions that can foster cohesion between different personality types and improve your team management.

Gathering information from teams

Making assumptions about different personality types present in your company can harm your management.

However, the apparent lack of conflicts within your team is not necessarily synonymous with good alignment between the different members.

You should evaluate the atmosphere among your team members during your meet-ups rather than focusing only on the practical details of your meeting. For this, spend the first few minutes of each meeting socialising with your employees.

Ask about each one and do not hesitate to ask them open questions about:

  • Their involvement in the team;
  • Their impressions regarding team management;
  • Their suggestions for improving collaboration within the company.

Positively framing differences

The way you approach the personality types present in the organisation will determine their reactions and confirm (or not) the effectiveness of your management style. The best approach is to frame the differences between employees in a positive manner.

For example, instead of saying “David is incompetent at managing Excel spreadsheets. He knows absolutely nothing about it“, it is instead preferable to say “Since David is very creative, I think we should entrust him with the design of the graphics to be integrated into the document“.

This change, although minor in formulation, can have a profound impact on the behaviour of the mentioned team member, and on the perception other members have of your leadership.

Setting an example

A team leader is, above all, a person who knows how to set an example.

You must keep in mind that most of the discrepancies noted within project teams are the responsibility of the manager, and the way you treat a single employee impacts the morale and performance of the others.

Regardless of the personality types you need to integrate into your team management, you must demonstrate commitment, sociability, and kindness. It is only by showing your leadership that other members will follow and emulate you.

As a manager or team leader, it would be useful for you to take a leadership test to know your strengths as well as the points to improve for better management of your employees.

Valuing the efforts of each employee

Recognising and valuing the efforts of your team members are important gestures to maintain their motivation on a daily basis.

Indeed, regardless of the personality types you have in your company, showing gratitude and recognition will not only improve your team management but also strengthen your relationships.

To do this, you must learn to celebrate successes, whether individual or collective. Award prizes or offer rewards to thank your team members for their involvement and devotion to contributing to the achievement of the company’s objectives.

Furthermore, valuing your employees develops your company’s employer brand. And a developed employer brand increases your chances of finding good profiles.

Personality type divergence: What you need to remember for your team management

For a manager, the divergence of personality types is a problem to be solved daily for good team management.

Although it is a difficult task, it is possible to have a united, efficient, and productive team thanks to some leadership strategies.

These strategies revolve around a few principles inherent to corporate life. These include the valorisation of human capital, the improvement of the work environment and conditions, and the understanding of the needs and expectations of employees.

In addition to these principles, a good corporate culture and exemplary behaviour from the manager are necessary to reconcile the different personality types of team members and to improve the management.