This article throws light upon the top nine types of personality traits. The types are: 1. Perfectionists 2. Helpers 3. Achievers 4. Romantics 5. Observers 6. Questioners 7. Enthusiasts 8. Bosses or Asserters 9. Mediators or Peacemakers.
Personality Trait: Type # 1. Perfectionists:
Leaders who are perfectionists set a very high bar of expectation for themselves.
They are principled leaders with the following personality traits:
1. Strive for excellence in everything they do—however large or small:
Perfection in content and look-and-feel are both important to them. These leaders are very dedicated, and have an extremely intense work ethic. As a natural consequence, such leaders often expect the same from their people. Their motto for their team is to do every aspect of the job in a way that cannot be improved upon.
2. Foundation built on a strong Focus of quality:
To such leaders, a flaw in execution is an absolute no-no. Hence, to ensure flawless execution, they develop and pursue systematic processes with intense rigor. These processes include multiple checks-and-balances at each step to ensure that errors surface in the early stages and get rectified.
3. Lofty standards:
Another characteristic of such leaders is setting lofty standards. They benchmark themselves with the highest global standards, and strive for themselves and their teams to achieve the same. They have internal metrics to constantly compare themselves and their teams against the benchmark. Their high standards make them respected by their people for the quality of what they produce.
However, perfectionist leaders could potentially get slowed down by the weight of their own expectations. It is not uncommon to see programmes led by such leaders getting delayed over and over again. This happens due to the perfectionists’ constant desire to improve, without making a judgment call on the right time to stop, and move on to the next programme.
Individuals wanting to pursue a career in a design can learn from perfectionists. Companies which look at design as their core competency value the skills of perfectionists.
Personality Trait: Type # 2. Helpers:
These leaders seek out opportunities to assist others. They are often good coaches and sounding boards for their people. Their personality is built on sincere skills to listen to, and to understand the needs of others. These leaders thrive on building and nurturing relationships.
Three key attributes of these leaders that are based on strong interpersonal skills are:
1. Smiling demeanor:
They have a pleasant personality, are optimistic, and have a cheerful attitude not only about work, but also about life.
2. Generously appreciative:
To get the best out of their teams and peers, they are always generously appreciative of the work they do. They do not lose an opportunity to encourage their people and give a pat on their back to increase their team’s enthusiasm to encourage further contributions. They show that they care.
This implies understanding the position of someone from one’s own position. In other words, these leaders put themselves in the other’s shoes and try to understand how they would feel if they were in the same position.
Helpers, however, often get trapped in their over-zealousness to please and support many people. Their weakness is their inability to say ‘no’. They cannot turn down requests from others. Thus, they bring unto themselves huge mental stress as more and more people get to depend on them.
Strong leaders who exhibit this personality trait find a way to overcome this handicap, by coming up with a scalable model with others sharing the load of supporting the people who are dependent on them. Individuals looking for roles in human Resources or coaches/mentors in organizations can build the ‘helper’ personality.
Personality Trait: Type # 3. Achievers:
These are leaders who excel in a single-minded pursuit of their goals. What characterizes these leaders is their focus and relentless pursuit of moving ahead while removing obstacles that come their way.
These leaders have the following personality traits:
1. Goal setting:
These leaders set aggressive, but realistic goals. They begin with a clear vision of what they set out to do for their work groups and for themselves. They break it up into near-term milestones for the teams—and ensure that the team remains focused on them at all times.
Achievers are highly execution-oriented and this is their biggest strength. They overcome barriers that come their way. They plan well, monitor risks at all times, and provide for contingencies. They are also known for building a culture of efficiency in their organization.
Lack of efficiency and competence in their teams that slows execution frustrates them. Speed means a lot to achievers—and they do everything to inculcate these traits amongst their team members. Learning from achievers can give a jump-start to a young professional’s career.
By observing such leaders, one can understand the art and science of goal-setting and instill in themselves the spirit of maniacal execution. People with highly ambitious career goals develop the personality traits of achievers and learn from those who practice it effectively.
Personality Trait: Type # 4. Romantics:
Romantics are idealistic leaders. They crave for Utopia—in terms of where they want to see themselves, and their groups and organization. They set goals that may not be realistic—but ones that ‘looks and feels glamorous’. They are expressive and often excel in artistic pursuits as part of, or in addition to their chosen profession.
Some personality traits of romantics are:
1. Set lofty vision that may not be grounded in reality:
These leaders lack realism. They dream and set goals that are impossible to meet—but create a (short-lived) feel-good ambience.
2. Lack focus and are poor in taking decisions:
Romantics are unable to focus on a goal and take hard decisions that are needed to move forward in pursuit of the vision.
3. Kind and people-friendly:
They are kind-hearted, humorous, love to interact with people, can spend long hours discussing how things should be (and are not today).
Personality Trait: Type # 5. Observers:
These leaders have a strong sixth sense. They are highly intuitive in gauging situations.
Observers are highly perceptive. They have a keen power to process the events around them, do a causal analysis, and come to their own conclusion. They are more curious than others, and often get deeply entangled in analyzing seemingly minor events around them for a long time.
The observations made by these leaders lead to critical and sharp conclusions, sometimes bordering on pessimism.
Observers are loners. In fact, they appreciate being left alone and be given the time to analyse situations in depth.
Observers like to be respected for their well thought through views and in-depth analysis. They do not take to criticism very lightly and tend to get argumentative if doubted.
In one’s career, having some aspect of the traits of the observer can help an individual be perceptive of the situation around them, and take the right career decisions.
Personality Trait: Type # 6 Questioners:
These are leaders who keep an organization honest and move in the right direction without getting into complacency.
Key attributes of questioners are:
1. Analytical skills:
Questioners possess the gifted ability to think on their feet. They have a sharp analytical bent of mind which helps them in finding flaws in arguments and in the rationale.
2. Lateral thinking:
These leaders possess the skills for lateral thinking. When most others in a team are naturally drifting towards a conclusion, questioners bring in fresh perspective and lateral thinking.
These leaders communicate crisply and forcefully. They are usually respected for their views. Having questioners in a team can be an asset to ensure an organization does not drift in the wrong direction. They may come across sometimes as negative or ones who slow down the standard process, but they may be ignored at the organization’s peril.
These leaders allow one to think through the non-obvious and thereby avoid risky pitfalls. They also ensure that teams do not get into the trap of group-think in the wrong direction.
Personality Trait: Type # 7. Enthusiasts:
Enthusiasts lend an air of optimism around them.
They have the following attributes:
They thrive on variety. Enthusiasts tend to move from one role to another, and even change professions completely over the course of their career.
2. Story teller:
Enthusiasts love to dream a future, and tend to get their teams-excited about it. These dreams may not be grounded in reality, but that does not bother the enthusiasts. They tell stories to their teams about how the world will be in their desired future state.
They are spontaneous, have high energy and eternally optimistic. Often they have an infectious personality that rallies people around them. Enthusiasts or adventurers, however, fail to sometimes carry through on their commitments. Their execution and attention to detail are sloppy, and need strong people to balance them.
People interested in following a career in public speaking need to have some traits of Adventurers, as they go from one situation to the other, telling stories of successes and new models for growth.
Personality Trait: Type # 8. Bosses or Asserters:
People with the ‘Boss’ personality are those with high determination and are possessed with a sense of direction. They have a clear idea of the direction to be taken, and are dismissive of other’s views.
Some of the traits bosses or asserters exhibit are:
Asserters have strong conviction of thought. They have an independent mindset, and are confident of their approach. They are not afraid to take unpopular decisions.
2. Power orientation:
They love to have the power and even demonstrate the power to their subordinates and peers. They come across as dominating in meetings and sometimes are poor listeners.
3. Supportive of team:
Strange as it may seem to some, asserters fight for their people and protect them in discussions where their worth is challenged. Asserters are strong personalities who may be dismissive of good suggestions from their team members, if these are contrary to their opinion.
Extremely assertive leaders sometimes lead to a high-stress situation in organizations, and often cause bum-out. One who needs to turnaround an organization from a crisis by taking hard decisions can learn from the skills of asserters.
Personality Trait: Type # 9. Mediators or Peacemakers:
An organization cannot do without peacemakers. Conflicts are common in any organization, and peacemakers ensure these do not go out of hand. While peacemakers play an important, sometimes invisible role in an organization, they sometimes feel frustrated at the lack of due recognition for the thankless role they play.
Peacemakers are characterized-by the following:
1. Good at arbitration and trustworthy:
These leaders observe situations and carefully listen to positions of all concerned. They then deftly look for possible middle-ground. They are trusted by all, because they do not play games and are genuinely interested in a solution. This helps them to be effective in volatile situations.
2. Hate conflict:
Peacemakers try to take the steam out of confrontational situations. They tell the warring parties why ‘winning’ is inconsequential and take both sides to a compromise. They thrive in harmony.
3. Like to be respected:
They have an inherent desire to be respected for the critical role they play in an organization to keep the harmony. But whatever might be the types of personality of a leader, leadership in general means the ability to influence others and convert them to their own opinion. A leader is capable of changing the scenario from you versus me, to you and me.
It has been said that a leader is a person who knows the road, who can keep ahead and who pulls others with him. A leader gains the confidence of others because he has confidence in himself whatever might be the adversities he faces.
He knows that even if he can’t direct the winds, he can at least adjust the sails. He understands how to win the heart of others and win his objective. Leadership qualities can be ascertained with the help of different kinds of personality tests.