Individuals at Work

The nature of the individual

Individual: (n) – “A person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own style, needs and goals.”Everyone in your organisation is unique – they have different expectations, preferences and motivators. Yet we invariably treat everyone in the same way – and we probably go out of our way to do just that.

The simple fact is that individuals perform best when they are able to exercise their own preferences and priorities in pursuit of their work goals.

Putting round pegs in round holes

So, if your team is full of individuals with great talents, wouldn’t it be great if both they and you really understand where both their strengths and their preferences lie?

It’s a proven fact that people perform better when in roles that they feel suit their strengths and their behavioural preferences. Let me give you some examples which may ring bells with you thinking of people in your team…

  • The quiet, analytical person – loves figures and detail, a perfectionist – to the point of frustrating you at times!
  • The gregarious, popular person who is very good at getting people to go along with them, loved by your customers, but is a bit slip-shod with the detail… and certainly not a finisher.
  • The task oriented person – give them a target and they’ll achieve it… even if it upsets a few people along the way.
  • The steady, loyal and accommodating one – totally reliable, greatly liked by their fellow team members… but lacking urgency and hating change.

At best, square pegs in round holes make the most of a difficult situation – and at worst put those involved under considerable stress – not to mention the effect this has on their fellow team members.

Barrier to Success