A Common Language for Understanding Personality Differences Our approach of understanding personality differences provides a common language for understanding our natural personality diversity. Through this multifaceted approach, we can begin to understand how people tend to have fundamental differences in how they make meaning of the world that can lead to “stands”, value agendas and fixed ways of interacting. These differences also influence how they learn, make decisions, and develop. Our approach describes natural preferences that lead to various ways of perceiving and ways of deciding that are often critical for an organization’s success, yet, if not understood, can be the primary source of miscommunications. Effective application of this approach is not through a flavor-of-the-month workshop. It is not enough that people take a personality instrument and find out their ”type.” In fact, such use of instruments at best will be a waste of resources and at worst will likely have unintended negative consequences. To be truly effective, this approach needs to be introduced in a strategic way that aligns with organizational objectives. It needs to be introduced as a common language, available to all and readily understood. To be most effective, the frameworks need to be woven into the fabric of the organization and other training and change initiatives.
Levels of Expertise for Sustainability
A sustainable organization-wide implementation of this approach as a common language requires having several levels of in-house expertise. We have found the levels outlined below are critical to sustaining effective use of the language. Ongoing external expertise is also required to ensure accurate design, effective coaching and consistent results. Linda Berens Institute is uniquely positioned to provide this training and expertise to achieve desired results in a cost-effective way. We pride ourselves on leaving the organization with the internal expertise to carry on programs we help them develop.
As the language of typology is introduced into the organization, individuals throughout the organization become more self-aware and develop knowledge of self and others as well as the skills to use this information to communicate more effectively.
As enthusiasm builds, some people are drawn to the framework and keep it actively alive. They become the ones who call the language to mind when conflict arises. Formal and informal leaders and managers typically fill this role. A focus on giving these champions more knowledge and other tools will ensure sustainability and lessen the potential for resistance by those who often feel squeezed between demands of those above them and the people they are managing.
To implement this knowledge on a broad scale, it is more cost effective and more sustainable if some of these enthusiasts become facilitators who are Berens CORE™ Certified or licensed to use the CORE Approach and programs. This training can be conducted in-house if 8 or more facilitators are desired. Of course, the more facilitators, the faster the implementation.
Organization Development/Intervention Level
This role can be played by one of our associates as external consultants as well as internally by a key training and development professional or internal coaches. Given the nature of systems, changing them from within usually requires some outside intervention since it is hard to “see” the system of which one is a part so we often serve as meta consultants for the internal consultants.
Subject Matter Expert Level
This is primarily the role of Linda Berens Institute’s faculty and consultants. We train your facilitators, consult on design, and coach your internal expert as well as your executives and the facilitators. In addition to attention to the levels of expertise needed, we also consider other aspects of the organizational system as well as external forces. These will determine the appropriate application areas. For example, if the systemic structures such as standard procedures and practices, reward systems, and staff meetings are counter to the underlying philosophy and framework, the time and money invested may not be as well spent. We then help leadership conduct staff meetings using a philosophy and language consistent with the goals of the implementation plan.