Have you ever had this experience. You like your job. You even feel quite competent at it, and yet, that direct report manager is simply unbearable and driving your crazy? You feel you don’t understand what it is they really want. You believe there is no way to please them. You wonder if your health will hold up while working with them. These are feelings commonly reported by people who have just quit their managers. If we are to be even more truthful, these people have just quit their managers extreme personality tendencies.
In any relationship, whether it be business or personal, there is always a combination of personality colors tendencies at work. They are either blending and communicating beautifully, or they are not blending and they are communicating horribly.
Let’s examine why many people have reported they have quit their managers:
They felt their manager did not have clarity, and could not effectively communicate company strategy and goals?
If you speak different personality colors languages, it is very difficult to gain clarity about much of anything. If you have people who value meaning, “What’s the point of this undertaking?” and people on the opposite side of the personality color wheel saying, “You don’t need to understand meaning, you just need to mean to get things done,” it becomes apparent very quickly that whatever undertaking your are attempting is going to get frustrated and stalled.
They felt their manager did not listen?
Whether in a full meeting or in a closed office if you find yourself repeating, reframing, or readdressing the same points to the manager over and over again the problem may not be you, but your ability to speak into the personality color you are attempting to communicate with. AND, if this is happening often, I can guarantee you that your manager is just as frustrated as you are, because they are clearly not understanding how you are thinking as well.
They felt their manager did not value others’ time?
If your find yourself in a two hour standup meeting going in circles when the agenda originally called for a 15 minute catchup session it is pretty clear that you are dealing with a non-linear thinker, who loves to brainstorm. If you are a get to the point kind of thinker, and a personality that values time, this can be extremely frustrating and aggravating for you. If you are a visionary, and passionate about possibilities, this style or management is going to be much more interesting and entertaining.
They felt their manager had a need to always be right?
I mean about everything - no matter the issue they have the solution in hand. If this is your experience, you are most likely dealing with personalities on the red, purple, blue side of the Primary Colors Personality wheel. These personalities love to be right. They love to say “I told you so,” when you don’t listen too. Once you understand better the personality tendencies of others, it is much easier to not take things personally and to realize that often these people are right and that is where their value lies.
They felt their manager did not invest in their people?
It’s easy to tell if the manager is supporting the growth and career progression of their staff. They are usually personality colors that care about unity, working together, shared information, and collaboration instead of competition. That is why it is important to understand the different personality types on your team. Some personalities thrive on competition, winning awards, breaking records, while other personality thrive on teamwork, working in sync and collaboration. In order for people to feel fulfilled in their work, a manager is going to need to understand how to communicate with and motivate different personalities, differently.
And finally -
They went out of their way to not have to deal with their manager?
Getting things done in business is challenging enough in even the best circumstances. Too many managers are really warrior leaders who have little empathy or humility that might engender trust and confidence in their staff and others around them. It is important to understand the difference between a great manager personality and a warrior leader personality. They are very different and necessary for very different outcomes. Warrior leaders acting as managers will actually end up driving good people out the door and introduce a spiral of failure and financial loss for their company. While great managers will manage projects and people effectively and efficiently.
So ask yourself when another one of your top people is quickly walking out the door - are they quitting the company or the extreme personality color of their manager? When we lose good, trained people we are dramatically and negatively impacting the company’s bottom-line. Wouldn’t it be better to understand color personality tendencies so that you can better utilize the strengths, gifts and talents of each of your employees in a way that was positive for your company’s bottom line instead?
Dawn Billings, creator and author of Primary Colors Personality Test and Insight Tools. Dawn is the founder of the Executive Training Resort in Mesa, Arizona, and does Couples Therapy Retreats that can save a marriage.