What kind of person are you at work?

What type of person are you at work? 

Did you know that there are four types of dominant personalities in the world of business? Each type has its strengths and weaknesses. Consequently, it is up to the project manager to take charge and ensure that the members of his team work together to see the project through to completion. We will come back to that a little further down. What kind of person are you at work? 


The Role of the Project Manager

A good project manager has an outstanding sense of organization but must also show leadership. Much like a hockey coach, the project manager must take the time to evaluate the members of his or her team and assign them to strategic locations.


Who works well with whom? Who has strengths that someone else does not? Here, the goal is to identify the personality types of these resources to pool their strengths. As a result, each employee operates in a better working climate.


Evaluating team members helps to keep the troops motivated and avoid unnecessary friction. In this way, the use of time is maximized so that everyone can give their best.


What kind of person are you at work?

Without putting everyone in the same bag, there are generally four main personality categories. The characteristics of each will be discussed below. It should also be mentioned that a person often has one dominant type and others that are more nuanced. 


1 – Prudent, precise, evaluator Type

These people analyze everything and need to know all the details before investing fully in a project.


This type of person asks a lot of questions to get all the necessary answers. Moreover, with them, there is no improvisation. Everything is calculated, analyzed, and planned! However, these people need close supervision. They need a guide to know where they are going but also to validate their initiatives.


The Prudent/precise/evaluator type likes to take the time it takes to do things right. Time to identify situations and elements of a project, time to better understand and time to act. They find it very difficult to manage urgent and unexpected situations and cannot conceive of rendering a product that is not impeccable in their eyes.


Indeed, in today’s situation where clients are under severe time and money constraints and are more inclined to accept imperfect solutions, there is often a sense of urgency. The type of person we are looking at right now finds this highly unsatisfactory.


Their ideal project

The Prudent/precise/evaluator type excels in complex and precise projects that are not urgent. Managing their time is a daily challenge, so the project manager will need to ensure that the workload is properly balanced. In this case, giving less work but giving it more often is a winning solution.


However, these people are a major asset in a team since they can understand and break down the finest details. When defining objectives, their potential contribution should be seriously considered.


2 – Driver, cowboy Type

These people are the opposite of the first group. In fact, they are often incompatible when they work together. The Driver/cowboy is a go-getter, even in a hurry, for whom details are the least of his worries.


These people are focused on their goals and will do EVERYTHING they can to get there. As a result, this may involve taking on the workload of others or alienating some team members.


The Driver/cowboy is an action-oriented person who likes to make decisions (that work for, or against, his colleagues). Always with his goal in mind, he will work and negotiate with his colleagues to help and motivate them to get the job done faster.


When placed in the driver’s seat and time is of the essence, this person may tend to neglect quality. On the other hand, the Cowboy/driver is a great team leader when it comes to determining where to cut in the details. This saves his colleagues a lot of time!


His attitude stimulates the team to surpass itself and reach the initial objective within the desired time frame. For this person, a meeting should not take long: she appreciates people who have a spirit of synthesis and who do not get lost in the details. The Driver/cowboy sees them as true heroes!


A person of action who thrives on challenges, high-level estimates are not a problem. Our Driver/cowboy type will only be more flexible in reaching the goals. 


Their ideal project

The Experienced Driver – Cowboy is a clever negotiator. In addition, he excels in crisis management and can take a project in hand to deliver it on time. Based on a project budget/time/objective dimensions, the Cowboy will be able to deliver several deliverables at the same time. As it has been said: it is efficient but often at the expense of quality.


This category has the capacity to handle large workloads. The desire to deliver the product on time has a lot to do with it. Our Driver/cowboy will make sacrifices, compromises, and overtime to get there.


A project manager may mandate this type of person to guide a team working on a project that is not progressing at the desired pace. On the other hand, it is not advisable to have his deliverables reviewed by someone of the Prudent/precise – Evaluator type…


Their motto: “No need to chat, we have goals to reach! » 


3 – Supporter Type

The supporter likes to work in collaboration with others. He wants the consensus of all and is reluctant to question what was decided at the outset. It is important to him that his colleagues approve of the solution being discussed. Supporters tend to waste a lot of time when working together, which leads to budget overruns.


The Supporter likes to talk. He is a team player who does not like to work alone. A Supporter’s potential is maximized by having him or her work in a small team of 3 or 4 people, ideally other Supporters.


As mentioned above, this type seeks the consensus of his or her peers. However, a consensus is not always the best decision. It is then up to the Project Manager to intervene to stop consensus building, revisions, and negotiations. Following the project budget/time/objective dimensions, the project manager must be vigilant, because these consensus advocates can lose time through consensus building, which can lead to significant budget overruns.


On the other hand, the supporter loves to lend a hand. In this way, he can ensure that his colleagues agree with the decisions. He is often given the mandate to train new recruits, and he loves it! The Supporter is the best at explaining the broad outlines of a project.


The Supporter will work to achieve consensus. Even though sometimes consensus is not the best decision. The Project Manager is sometimes forced to intervene and to stop the Support trying to get buy-in from all his team members. On the other hand, the Supporter is willing to help anyone. He appreciates giving a helping hand, which allows him to make sure that everyone agrees with the decision. He is excellent in a training phase or when speaking to new recruits and is unrivalled in explaining the broad outlines of a project. 


Their ideal project

To ensure that a Supporter meets the deadlines, the Project Manager may need to isolate the Supporter. For the Supporter, this is a punishment, but in reality, it is a way to get him to focus. The objective is to deliver a product, a solution, so you must work on it. The Project Manager, therefore, gives him a more precise guideline and thus avoids seeking consensus from everyone. That said, whenever out-of-scope items arise, the Supporter is someone you can count on to help the client remain focused on the initial project objectives. 


4 – Promoter Category

The Promoter is the spirit of the team: he likes to have fun at work. He relaxes the atmosphere even in the most difficult moments. His great strengths are listening and adaptability. Moreover, he is also an excellent mediator who leads meetings and conversations in the right direction.


The Promoter is the ideal ally of the project manager. The latter can count on him to ensure that all teams work together, hand in hand. Why is that? Because this type of person uses diplomacy so that everyone can work in a pleasant work environment.


In addition, a promoter is a person who always encourages his colleagues and plays a key role from the early stages of a project (even before it is concrete). Above all, his encouragement and work ethic allows him to guide the other team members in the evolution of the project.


He can be described as “creative”. He is a true innovator who appreciates novelty and likes to change the way things are done. To deliver a project within the established deadlines, the Promoter will be flexible in his actions and decisions. He will also adapt to others, always with the goal of reaching objectives.


Curious and working with his guts, the Promoter is the real salesman of a project. According to the project budget/time/objective dimensions, it is better to spare him work that is too detailed and too precise. He will lose all interest.


Their ideal project

The Promoter needs green fields and freedom. He is the artist of the team, the one who brings the concepts from the three previous types. His needs for innovation and creation are strong. If he is asked to carry out redundant tasks, he will tend to exceed budgets because he will get bored.


Time management is not his strength. He likes to be guided and accompanied to finalize his tasks. The Promoter is rather good at explaining concepts to his team and clients. Moreover, he likes to take the time it takes to bring them to a consensus, just like the Supporter would do. 


Conclusion – What kind of person are you at work?

This analysis grid, sprinkled with a twist of humor, is a four-dimensional model that gives us a glimpse of how each deliverable should be assigned to whom. Even though an individual may have multiple personalities, this tool can be used to homogenize a team and bring out the skills and talent of each individual by placing him or her in the right place. Understanding a personality helps to manage it, to grasp it, but also to highlight it in a non-homogeneous team.


When the project manager can bring out the value of each unique person in the project, the strength of the team is multiplied tenfold. Finding team strengths is what I am passionate about. That is what I work on in each of my projects to find the elements that allow me to challenge my teams.


What kind of person are you at work?


Learn more about the key roles in a project team right here.