How we work has fundamentally changed in the last few years, with remote work becoming an increasingly common aspect of the modern workplace. As teams grow more geographically dispersed, companies face new challenges in managing remote employees and maintaining effective collaboration.

One of the most significant challenges remote employees face is the development of professional familiarity, which entails gaining insight into their colleagues’ work habits, strengths, values, and preferences related to their jobs.fastcompany.com

At the heart of successful remote collaboration lies the ability to foster self-awareness and emotional intelligence within team members, which is essential for building strong connections and overcoming the social distance that can arise in displaced team environments.

This blog post will explore the importance of self-awareness and emotional intelligence in remote collaboration and strategies for engaging and motivating globally-dispersed teams.

As remote work continues to evolve and expand, organizations must understand the challenges and opportunities this new way of working presents. One key challenge in a hybrid work model is managing the social distance between team members working from home or in remote locations, which can lead to feelings of isolation and disconnectedness.

Organizations can reduce social distance, improve communication, and promote a more cohesive and collaborative work environment by developing self-awareness and emotional intelligence in remote team members.

In the following sections, we will delve deeper into the social distance, explore the benefits of fostering self-awareness and emotional intelligence in remote teams, and provide practical strategies and tools to enhance remote collaboration and communication. Additionally, we will discuss methods for engaging and motivating globally-dispersed teams to create a more inclusive and effective remote work culture.

a blue mug is sitting next to a laptop that has a video call showing on the screen

Understanding Social Distance In A Geographically Dispersed Team

Social distance refers to the emotional connection, or lack thereof, among team members, particularly in remote work environments. As teams become more geographically dispersed, the potential for increased social distance can hurt team dynamics, leading to feelings of isolation and a lack of cohesion within the group.

Negotiation and leadership experts have long advocated for perspective-taking—attempting to understand your counterpart’s thoughts, feelings, and motives. The result is reduced social distance.hbr.org

If employees feel disconnected, it becomes more challenging to establish trust, maintain open communication, and foster a sense of belonging, which are all crucial for effective team collaboration.

The Challenge Of Connecting And Coordinating In Dispersed Teams

In dispersed teams, connecting and coordinating with one another can be daunting. Differences in time zones, work schedules, languages, and cultural backgrounds can all contribute to the challenges of remote collaboration. As a result, team members may find it difficult to develop strong working relationships, share knowledge effectively, and stay aligned with their colleagues’ goals and priorities. This can lead to miscommunication, confusion, and a decline in overall team productivity.

In response to the diverse needs of its global community, Cloverleaf is refining its platform by integrating core features and functions in multiple languages. Currently, users can select Spanish or German within their dashboard and enjoy the Cloverleaf experience in their chosen language. This enhancement aims to provide a more inclusive and accessible experience for users worldwide.

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Reducing social distance in remote work environments is essential for promoting effective collaboration and fostering a positive team culture.

EI is all about empathy, inclusion, and respect — traits that are more important than ever at a time when managers and employees have no idea what challenges their colleagues are facing… – forbes.com

Addressing social distance is a crucial management task for leaders of asynchronous teams, as it can directly impact overall performance and success. By minimizing social distance, leaders can help their virtual teams feel more connected, engaged, and supported. This, in turn, can lead to improved communication, a better understanding of colleagues’ perspectives, and increased teamwork toward shared goals.

Fostering Self-Awareness And Emotional Intelligence In Dispersed Teams

Self-awareness refers to an individual’s understanding of their emotions, strengths, weaknesses, and thought patterns. At the same time, emotional intelligence encompasses the ability to recognize, interpret, and manage one’s own and others’ emotions effectively.

Both self-awareness and emotional intelligence in the workplace are critical components of successful remote collaboration. They enable teammates to navigate complex interpersonal dynamics, adapt to diverse communication styles, and empathize with their colleagues’ perspectives.

The Benefits Of Self-Awareness And Emotional Intelligence In Remote Work

Developing self-awareness and emotional intelligence can significantly improve remote team collaboration in at least four impactful ways:

  1. Better Communication: Teammates with emotional intelligence are more likely to express their thoughts and feelings clearly and constructively, facilitating open and honest dialogue within the team.

  2. More Collaboration: Self-aware individuals are better equipped to recognize their strengths and weaknesses, enabling them to contribute more effectively and collaborate more closely with their teammates.

    • Cloverleaf’s assessment-driven coaching helps team leaders and members to adapt their leadership, communication, and behavior in real-time. The insights help teams uncover and leverage employee strengths and potential. Plus, individuals can see how diverse or similar their team is and how they complement one another.

  3. Less Conflict: An essential aspect of cultivating high emotional intelligence within a team is consciously attempting to understand situations from each member’s unique viewpoint. Emotional intelligence helps teammates identify and address potential conflicts before they escalate, fostering a more harmonious workplace.

  4. Stronger Adaptability: Emotional intelligence serves as a foundation for adaptability. Emotionally intelligent individuals can more easily adapt to changes and challenges, making them invaluable assets in the dynamic landscape of geographically dispersed teams.

3 Practices For Engaging And Motivating Globally-Dispersed Teams

To cultivate a robust sense of unity and teamwork within remote workers, consider adopting the following approaches: promoting transparency, nurturing a sense of community, and encouraging knowledge-sharing.

Embrace Transparency To Strengthen Trust

  1. Establish Clear Goals And Expectations: Clearly define team objectives and individual responsibilities, ensuring everyone is aligned and working towards common goals.

  2. Encourage Regular Communication: Promote remote communication among teammates through various channels, such as video calls, instant messaging, and check-ins.

  3. Use A Coaching Approach: Adopt a leadership mentality responsive to employees’ needs, providing guidance, encouragement, and recognition when appropriate.

  4. Cultivate Inclusivity: Encourage your team to be open to diverse perspectives, experiences, and ideas.

Facilitate Community-Building

To facilitate community-building among geographically dispersed teams, focus on implementing activities that effectively bridge the social distance between teammates. These activities can help foster trust, empathy, and a sense of camaraderie.

Examples include engaging icebreaker questions, scheduling virtual social events, organizing cross-functional projects, and offering training sessions to strengthen team-building, communication skills, and emotional intelligence skills.

  1. Team Building Questions: Kick-off virtual meetings with icebreakers to help people get to know each other better.

  2. Virtual Lunches Or Coffee Breaks: Schedule regular virtual social events where teammates can connect and chat informally.

  3. Collaborative Problem-Solving: Consider projects that benefit from cross-functionality to streamline processes, brainstorm, and improve workflow.

  4. Workshops And Training: Provide virtual training sessions to enhance team-building, effective communication, and emotional intelligence skills.

Encouraging Knowledge-Sharing

Encouraging a culture of knowledge-sharing and ongoing learning is essential for maintaining connectedness, engagement, and motivation within dispersed teams. To foster this culture, consider the following:

  1. Creating A Centralized Knowledge Repository: Utilize a cloud-based platform like Google Drive or Dropbox where teammates can access relevant information, share files, and whiteboard.

  2. Utilize Easy-To-Use Communication Tools: Implement user-friendly collaboration tools like Slack, Zoom, Asana, or Trello so that it is easy to contribute, find, and access information.

  3. Hosting Virtual ‘Show and Tell’ Sessions: Designate regular team meetings to showcase projects and share learnings.

  4. Celebrating Team Achievements: Acknowledge individual and team accomplishments regularly to help reinforce a sense of purpose and pride in the team’s work.

The Importance of Continuous Learning and Adaptation

As remote collaboration continues to evolve, so too must the strategies and practices used to manage and support dispersed teams. To stay ahead of the curve, organizations and team leaders must commit to reassessing virtual collaboration and procedures to ensure they remain effective.

Equally important is fostering a culture of ongoing learning and professional growth among employees, empowering them with the support, tools, and skills to excel in a virtual environment.

The momentum behind the global shift to remote work continues to grow, driven by organizations embracing flexible working arrangements to adapt to their employees’ diverse needs and preferences.

This reality underscores the importance of developing innovative tools, techniques, and best practices to facilitate effective collaboration among coworkers, regardless of their physical location.

Placing emphasis on self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and community-building within dispersed teams enables organizations to maintain agility, productivity, and success in the constantly changing landscape of work. As geographically dispersed teams unite individuals with diverse backgrounds, cultures, and experiences, it is essential for organizations to foster environments that appreciate this diversity and encourage understanding, empathy, and mutual respect among team members.

Effective team-building icebreaker questions can do more than entertain – they can also increase team engagement and foster a more collaborative work environment.

WHAT ARE GOOD TEAM BUILDING QUESTIONS?

Good team-building questions encourage open communication, mutual understanding, and a sense of camaraderie among team members. 

7 Qualities Of Good Team Building Questions

1. Promote Openness and Sharing: Framing questions to help encourage team members to share personal insights, experiences, and preferences can build trust and understanding among team members.

2. Be Inclusive and Respectful: The questions should be inclusive, considering team members’ diverse backgrounds and experiences. They should avoid sensitive topics that might make someone uncomfortable.

3. Foster Connection and Relatability: Effective team-building questions often relate to everyday experiences or interests, making it easier for team members to find common ground and connect on a personal level.

4. Encourage Positive Interaction: They should be light-hearted and fun, avoid contentious topics, and focus on eliciting positive responses that can lead to laughter and bonding.

5. Be Varied and Flexible: A mix of questions about personal preferences, hypothetical scenarios, and light-hearted choices keeps the activity engaging and caters to different personalities.

6. Align with Team Goals: The questions can also be tailored to align with specific team goals or themes, such as collaboration, creativity, or problem-solving.

7. Safe and Comfortable: They should create a safe space for sharing, where team members feel comfortable and not judged or put on the spot.

In essence, good team-building questions are those that not only break the ice but also lay the foundation for meaningful, more cohesive team relationships. They should be enjoyable and engaging and contribute to a better understanding and appreciation of each team member’s unique qualities.

How To Use Icebreaker Questions In Team Environments Effectively

Effective icebreakers help put people at ease and encourage open communication, making them a pivotal part of any team-building activity. Many people cringe or worry that team-building may feel awkward.

However, picking the right questions for team-building can help ensure you avoid negative reactions to the discussion. Ideally, effective icebreakers cut through social tensions as teams gather in person or in remote environments.

While leaders may feel a bit anxious the first time they incorporate icebreaker questions, these ideas for workplace improvement can help inspire more connection. And, the more a team seeks to know and understand one another, the process becomes easier and more acceptable.

Effective icebreakers can help create a positive and engaging environment for group activities, leading to better communication, collaboration, and relationships among participants.

Do you need help understanding your team’s personalities, communication styles, and work preferences? With Cloverleaf, you can access a variety of free personality tests for employees, including Enneagram, DISC, and 16-Types, to gain personalized insights into each member of your team.

6 Ways Workplace Ice Breaker Questions Can Build Stronger Teams

Carefully crafted icebreaker questions move teams beyond the basic information like personality type to inspire learning about:

  • Strengths

  • Weaknesses

  • Work Preferences

  • Communication Styles

  • Motivations

  • Conflict Triggers

Building personal connections with your team is critical for fostering collaboration and increasing emotional intelligence in the workplace. When members know each other on a deeper level, they are more likely to trust one another, communicate effectively, and work towards a common goal.

By leveraging assessment data, Cloverleaf provides personalized insights and Automated Coaching™ about every individual within a team. These insights can help inspire meaningful questions to unlock a team’s potential to communicate and collaborate effectively.

HOW TO INTRODUCE ICEBREAKER QUESTIONS

When it comes to introducing icebreaker questions to your team, it’s important to choose the right time and place. Springing these types of questions without warning can catch people off guard, resulting in awkward or flustered responses.

Alternatively, you can make these questions a regular part of your team’s routine by integrating them into daily or weekly stand-up meetings, newsletters, or even on a whiteboard in a common area.

The Best Strategies for Building Connections and Boosting Collaboration in Virtual Workplaces

Building connections within a hybrid work model has become more important as remote collaboration becomes increasingly prevalent. Adjusting to this new style of work can be challenging, and many remote workers struggle with feelings of isolation and imposter syndrome.

Incorporating questions that inspire learning about one another into your team meetings is an effective strategy for combating these feelings. Keep the exercise fresh and engaging by varying the types of questions at each meeting. This will help prevent the exercise from feeling repetitive or stale and will keep your members enthusiastic about connecting.

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13 TYPES OF TEAM BUILDING QUESTIONS

Effective team building requires thoughtful consideration. Depending on factors such as your team’s timing, location, and unique dynamics, you may need to pivot to different lines of questions. To help guide this process, below are various examples of questions to draw on.

Keep in mind questions can be a powerful tool for building camaraderie and fostering collaboration in the workplace. However, it’s important to use them appropriately to avoid potential backfires. Before introducing team-building questions, ask yourself whether the question is appropriate for the situation and will contribute to building a stronger team dynamic.

17 General Questions To Learn More About Team Members

Workplace icebreaker questions can be a great way to learn more about your fellow team members in a low-pressure and light-hearted way.

  1. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be, and why?

  2. What is a piece of advice from a mentor or family member that stuck with you?

  3. What are some items on your bucket list?

  4. Are you a night person or a morning person?

  5. Do you have any hidden talents?

  6. What would you tell your younger self?

  7. What’s your favorite musical instrument?

  8. What would you take with you if you were going to be stuck on a deserted island?

  9. What was the best gift you got? Did you get it for your birthday, Christmas, or another celebration?

  10. Do you consider yourself a dog person or a cat person?

  11. What did you think about first when you woke up this morning?

  12. Do you have siblings, or are you an only child?

  13. Did you grow up in the country or the city?

  14. Do you speak multiple languages? If so, which ones?

  15. What’s your favorite family tradition?

  16. Are you ever mistaken for someone else?

  17. What’s your favorite book? Have you read it more than once?

6 Travel-Related Questions

  1. Do you prefer to go to the mountains or the ocean?

  2. Do you like hot weather or cold weather when you travel?

  3. What country would you move to if you had the chance to move abroad?

  4. What was your first vacation spot?

  5. Have you been outside of the country?

  6. Do you look for keepsakes when you travel to remember your trip?

10 Either-Or Questions

  1. Marvel or DC? 

  2. Fall or spring? 

  3. iPhone or Android?

  4. Beach or mountains?

  5. Driving or flying?

  6. Cold or hot weather?

  7. Left or right-handed?

  8. McDonald’s or Burger King?

  9. Pepsi or Coke?

  10. Ice cream or cake?

8 “If You Could” Questions

  1. If you could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would you choose and why?

  2. If you could cure any disease or ailment, what would you choose?

  3. If you could earn $500,000 to give up your smartphone for 2 years, would you do it?

  4. If you suddenly became a billionaire, would you still work? 

  5. If you could experience something again for the first time, what would it be? 

  6. If you could go back in time 10 years and retain all your current memories, would you? 

  7. If you could have the choice to be famous, would you do it? 

  8. If you could earn $20 million dollars by giving up one important thing in your life forever, what would it be?

9 Job-Related Questions

  1. What is your morning routine?

  2. What is your dream job?

  3. How did you leave your worst job?

  4. What would your perfect office space be like?

  5. Do you like working remotely or prefer to work in an office?

  6. What work-from-home (WFH) accessory can you not live without?

  7. What beverage do you prefer to drink while you work?

  8. Do you feel more productive if you work at a specific time of day? Or in a particular area of your house?

  9. Have you ever worked in your pajamas or sweatpants?

10 Childhood Icebreaker Questions

  1. What cartoon character did you love growing up?

  2. What’s your earliest childhood memory?

  3. When did you get your first job?

  4. What subject did you enjoy the most in school?

  5. What subject did you like the least while you were in school?

  6. Did you play on sports teams while in school? Or were you involved in a band or theater?

  7. Have you kept any of your childhood hobbies into adulthood?

  8. What toy did you take with you everywhere you went?

  9. Did you ever have an imaginary friend? What were they like? What did you call them?

  10. What job did you want to have when you grew up? Would you still take that job if you could get it?

  11. What was your favorite costume to wear at Halloween?

9 “Would You Rather” Team Building Questions

  1. Would you rather land your dream job or win the lottery?

  2. Would you rather go to a loud party or a quiet get-together? 

  3. Would you rather retire early or work an easy career?

  4. Would you rather be indoors or outdoors?

  5. Would you rather drive or fly somewhere?

  6. Would you rather scuba dive or hike up a mountain?

  7. Would you rather work alone or with a team?

  8. Would you rather lead a team or work for a great leader?

  9. Would you rather have one long, 3-week vacation or three 1-week vacations?

11 Favorite Food Questions

  1. What is your favorite food?

  2. What is your favorite breakfast food?

  3. What food do you never want to eat again?

  4. What’s the weirdest food you ever ate?

  5. What culture or country makes your favorite style of food?

  6. What toppings would you put on your ideal pizza? How do you feel about pineapple and ham?

  7. If you could only eat one kind of ice cream for the rest of your life, what would it be?

  8. Do you prefer sweet, spicy, or savory snacks?

  9. What fast food restaurant do you prefer? What do you order when you go there?

  10. Do you like the drive-thru, or would you rather walk in to place your order?

  11. What’s your favorite cocktail or alcoholic beverage?

10 Pop-Culture and Famous Person Questions

  1. What’s your favorite movie?

  2. What famous individual would you like to meet?

  3. Do you know the lyrics to your favorite song?

  4. What cartoon character best reflects your personality?

  5. Who is your favorite late-night talk show host?

  6. Who is your favorite superhero?

  7. If you could only watch one movie, what would it be?

  8. What is your favorite video game?

  9. What genre of music do you like to listen to when you work? Is that your favorite genre?

  10. What movie or show do you think is completely overrated?

8 Weird and Outrageous Team Building Questions

  1. What is your biggest fear?

  2. If you were a fruit, what fruit would you be and why?

  3. Would you choose to fly or teleport?

  4. If you could be one age forever, what age would you choose?

  5. If you could bring back any trend, what would you choose?

  6. Have you ever pretended not to see someone in public so you didn’t have to talk to them?

  7. What’s the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done? 

  8. If you were given $2M dollars to live in a dark room with no light for 30 days, would you do it?

  9. If someone gave you one million dollars, what would you do with it?

9 Questions About Values And Purpose

  1. If you could have any job in the world, what would it be?

  2. What’s your biggest addiction?

  3. If you were a teacher, what would you teach?

  4. Who is your personal hero?

  5. What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?

  6. What’s the most important quality of a friend?

  7. What product do you refuse to use or promote?

  8. Do you do any volunteer work?

  9. What personal traits do you dislike the most about yourself?

9 Music, Movie, And Book Questions

  1. What is your favorite music genre?

  2. What’s your favorite movie?

  3. What’s your favorite book?

  4. What’s your favorite TV show?

  5. Have you ever acted? What was your role?

  6. What’s your favorite song to listen to when you’re feeling down?

  7. What was your favorite band in high school?

  8. What’s the worst movie you’ve ever seen?

  9. What’s your favorite childhood movie?

19 Funny Icebreaker Questions

  1. Do you brush your teeth before or after breakfast?

  2. What fashion trend from the 90s do you miss?

  3. What embarrassing thing happened at your last job?

  4. If you went on a talk show, what would you say?

  5. Do you have a funny skill?

  6. What do you have as the background on your phone or computer?

  7. What was your worst haircut? Do you ever have bad hair days?

  8. Have you named your car or vehicle? If so, what do you call it, and why did you pick the name?

  9. What’s your favorite slang phrase or word?

  10. Would you like to add a word to the dictionary? If so, what and why?

  11. What color crayon do you think would taste the best?

  12. Who gave you the worst advice you ever received, and what was the advice? Did you listen to it?

  13. If a genie gave you three wishes, what would you wish for and why?

  14. If the day suddenly had 25 hours instead of 24, what would you do with the extra hour?

  15. What is your favorite emoji, and why?

  16. What name would you pick if you were a professional wrestler?

  17. Do you consider a hotdog to be a sandwich? What about a taco?

  18. What is the weirdest dream you ever had? Do you ever have recurring dreams?

  19. What would you do if aliens landed in your backyard?

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5 Affordable Activities to Cultivate Camaraderie and Improve Performance

After you ask team-building questions, you can move on to team-building activities to further strengthen the bond between your fellow team members. We recommend activities like:

#1: Trivia

Team trivia nights give you a chance to put the information you’ve learned about your teammates into action. Ask co-workers to send in ideas for questions about themselves, like “What is my favorite candy?” or “How many pets do I have?”

You may make these questions multiple-choice if your team is still getting to know one another. For example, you could have a question like:

What is the name of Linda’s cat?

A: Beatrice

B: Sweetpea

C: Marigold

D: Linda doesn’t have a cat

Make sure that you keep track of all the answers provided by your team members. The team member who gets the most correct answers should receive a small prize at the end of the game!

#2: Bingo

Set up a bingo game for a great way to indulge your team’s competitive impulses. You can find online bingo cards that allow you to send out sheets to everyone. Use a bingo set to roll for numbers or an online random alphanumeric generator.

Consider alternating the ” caller ” role to allow everyone to fill out a bingo card. Bring rewards for the winner to keep everyone engaged and excited!

#3: Charades

Charades represent a great way to get everyone moving and laughing. Assign teams to work together. Charades can even work for remote meetings, though you may need to give your teammates time to make space in their office.

Re-arrange teams throughout the game to allow different people to work together or let pairs of your employees bond as they strive to gather the most points during the game.

#4: Community Service

Consider giving back to the community as part of your team-building activities. Select a charity or organization that means a lot to you, and set up a time for your team to participate in a day of service.

Community service activities give you a way to get out of the office, but be sure to consider team member who works remotely.

#5: Team Coffee

Why not get out of the office for a while as part of a team-building activity? Take your team to a favorite coffee shop and find out what everyone prefers to drink. If you have a virtual team, everyone can get their own coffee and meet up for a Zoom meeting.

For an after-hours meet-up, consider a virtual happy-hour gathering. Everyone can mix their own drinks – or open a bottle of wine – and relax while focusing on something besides work.

Asking the Right Questions: Learning to Build Trust and Collaboration With Teammates

Ultimately, the decision on what questions to ask should be based on your unique team and situation. Consider factors such as team dynamics, individual personalities, and goals when selecting the most appropriate questions.

Think about teammates’ personalities, communication styles, and interests. Are they known for their sense of humor, or are they more reserved? Do they prefer to keep to themselves, or do they enjoy discussing their personal lives outside of work?

By considering these factors, you can select team-building questions that are more likely to resonate with your team members and encourage open communication and connection.

Cloverleaf assessments

By tailoring your questions to individual preferences and characteristics, you can create a more personalized and engaging experience that encourages open communication and builds trust.

At Cloverleaf, we understand the importance of personalization and development in building high-performing teams. We turn assessment data into Automated Coaching™ to helps teams improve performance, increase collaboration, and build stronger relationships. To learn more about the unique insights and coaching, click the button above.

While personality tests for employees can provide valuable insights into unique traits and work styles, critics raise several concerns. Some argue that these tests may oversimplify complex human behavior, lack reliability, and validity, and suffer from self-report bias.

Additionally, there’s a concern Assigning individuals to personality types may encourage stereotyping, pigeonholing, limit growth, and lead to unfair treatment. Critics doubt the practicality of assessments, suggesting they may not offer actionable insights or benefits in the workplace.

Despite concerns, personality tests can improve workplace performance when used responsibly and alongside other tools. Plus, the way organizations use assessments is changing; assessment data can now be used dynamically rather than remaining a one-time, static transfer of information.

Ever since their inception, assessments have been a static, one-time experience. Meaning users complete a list of predefined questions that translate into a final score that lives on in perpetuity… Thanks to automation, asking additional assessment questions over time is becoming feasible. Assessments can be refined as users engage in additional contexts, such as interactions with specific colleagues or while dealing with certain challenges.Scott Dust, Forbes Council Member

A balanced approach to tests, while considering their limitations, provides valuable insights into employees’ strengths, motivations, and preferences. And understanding your employee’s personality inventory can help ensure they are in roles that are an ideal job fit.

For example, a more introverted person who doesn’t like speaking in public will most likely not get a job that requires them to do so. Having the right personality for the job or organization will result in a better job fit and bring many benefits—including reduced turnover.peopledynamics.co

By tapping into the power of these assessments, managers and coworkers can enhance understanding, strengthen collaboration, and reduce conflicts. Embracing assessment tools in the workplace can ultimately lead to a more successful organization and unlock your team’s full potential.

Key Takeaways:

  • Assessment tools can enhance understanding, strengthen collaboration, reduce conflicts, and unlock team potential for a more successful organization.

  • Consider relevance, validity, ease of use, and actionable insights when selecting assessment tools for employees.

  • A balanced approach to personality tests can provide valuable insights into employees’ strengths, motivations, and preferences, helping to ensure an ideal job fit.

  • Learning how to “treat others how they want to be treated” can improve communication, relationships, and team effectiveness.

The Purpose of Personality Tests For Employees

Ideally, personality tests help organizations provide a common language, improve communication, reduce tension, reveal strengths/weaknesses, and identify growth opportunities.

When employees understand their personality traits and those of their colleagues, they can approach each other more effectively. This can transform potentially tense situations into constructive conversations.

Assessments can also be used as tools for personal and professional development. They help individuals understand themselves, manage their behavior, and learn how to adjust their communication style according to their teammates’ preferences.

8 Benefits of Personality Assessments in the Workplace

  1. Increase Communication: By gaining insights into their and others’ personality traits, team members can effectively express their needs and better understand how to work toward shared goals.”

  2. Encourage Collaboration: By helping teammates understand the unique strengths, motivations, and communication styles of each other, you can create a more collaborative and harmonious culture.

  3. Personal and professional development: Self-awareness can catalyze personal and professional growth.

  4. Psychological safety: When individuals feel understood and can communicate in their most natural state, they experience a higher level of psychological safety, which is essential for a successful workplace.

  5. Strengthen Trust: When teammates understand each other’s personalities and motivations, they can build stronger relationships and trust, fostering a more supportive and cohesive environment.

  6. Boost Productivity: You can enhance team productivity and performance by leveraging each person’s strengths and adapting your communication style to their needs.

  7. Employee Satisfaction: When individuals are encouraged to utilize their strengths and align their work with their passions, they are more likely to be satisfied and engaged with their jobs, leading to increased retention and a more positive work atmosphere.

  8. Team Building: Understanding each person’s motivations and strengths can help you create more balanced and effective teams. Managers can assign tasks that align with each member’s skills by recognizing and leveraging individual talents.

It turns out the golden rule of “treat others how you want to be treated” can be taken a step further in the workplace. Instead, strive to “treat others how they want to be treated” to improve communication, strengthen relationships, and increase team effectiveness.

Enhancing Collaboration and Personal Development through Situation Awareness

Understanding your situation is crucial in moving from self-awareness to successfully collaborating with others. By recognizing that there are different ways you can behave regardless of your natural tendencies, and considering factors such as urgency in communication, asking more questions, or being mindful of the words you use when giving critical feedback, you can significantly improve the collaboration within your team.

Operating with minor adjustments, where you invest a little extra energy to behave differently according to your teammates’ needs or the situation, is called personal development and self-management. This is the ultimate goal of providing personality tests for employees – to comprehend yourself, your team, and your situation and to manage your behaviors, expectations, and actions accordingly. This ensures the most positive, fruitful, and forward-moving outcomes for your team and yourself.

Recognizing what makes you exceptional and choosing to act differently out of kindness, generosity, collaboration, and the desire to achieve more can make you more effective and thrive at work and in your personal life.

Assessments are tools for understanding all your options, enabling you to make the best choices and achieve the desired outcomes. By increasing emotional intelligence, you can unlock your full potential and become a more effective leader, teammate, and individual.

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4 Keys To Selecting the Right Personality Tests for the Workplace

When choosing assessment tools for your employees, consider the following factors:

  1. Relevance to the workplace: Ensure the test focuses on traits directly impacting work performance and collaboration.

  2. Validity and reliability: Select tests with strong scientific backing, as they are more likely to provide accurate and consistent results.

  3. Ease of use and interpretation: A good test should be easy to administer and understand. This helps individuals quickly apply the insights they gain to their everyday work interactions.

  4. Actionable insights: The best test results provide practical recommendations for improving communication, collaboration, and team performance.

Top 5 Workplace Personality Assessments to Optimize Team Performance

The top five assessments that can significantly enhance collaboration and performance in the workplace are:

  • 16 Types

  • DISC

  • Enneagram

  • CliftonStrengths®

  • VIA

16 Types

The 16 Types assessment, based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), measures mental habits and decision-making engines. It’s invaluable for understanding how individuals consume information, learn, and reach conclusions. By recognizing these habits, you can foster buy-in, minimize miscommunication, and build trust within your team.

Learn About The 16-Types Assessment

disc assessment

Disc

DISC is a quick and easy-to-remember assessment that measures four traits: Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness. By observing your team’s communication styles and level of activity in conversations, you can better understand their needs and motivations. Adjusting your approach based on their DISC profile can improve collaboration and productivity.

Learn About The DISC Assessment

enneagram

The Enneagram is a versatile assessment that can serve as a lens for understanding socio-emotional motivators. By identifying these drivers, you can comprehend why individuals behave differently when pursuing the same goals or facing the same challenges. The Enneagram also provides insights into group dynamics, decision-making environments, and conflict resolution, making it a powerful tool for promoting teamwork.

Learn About The Enneagram Assessment

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Cliftonstrengths®

Strengths-based assessments, such as CliftonStrengths®, Strengthscope, or VIA, help individuals tap into their innate talents and abilities. Employees can become more passionate and energized about their work by activating and developing these strengths. Leveraging the strengths of your entire team can create a synergistic environment that fosters a high-performing and engaged workforce.

Learn About Strengths-Based Assessment

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The VIA (Values in Action) Strengths assessment is a tool that measures an individual’s character strengths. It focuses on 24 character strengths, organized under six virtues: wisdom, courage, humanity, justice, temperance, and transcendence.

You can create a more positive and strengths-based team by identifying and leveraging individual character strengths by supporting employees in using their unique qualities to contribute to the organization’s success.

Learn About The VIA Assessment

When teammates understand and appreciate their colleagues’ unique abilities, they are more likely to support and complement one another. In addition, this understanding can encourage a growth mindset, as team members can learn from each other’s strengths and work on their weaknesses.

Personality tests for employees are essential tools in the workplace, as they can reveal diverse aspects of an individual’s character, work preferences, and motivations.

What Insights Do Different Personality Assessments Reveal About Employees?

16 Types (MBTI): Offers insight into how employees process information, learn, and make decisions. Managers can effectively assign tasks and optimize workplace dynamics by understanding how an individual’s brain works.

DISC Assessment: Focused on observable behavior, DISC identifies distinct work styles, making it an invaluable tool for managers to understand and support their employees. It’s beneficial when time is limited, and a quick evaluation is needed.

Enneagram: This assessment delves into the underlying motivations that drive an individual’s behavior. By comprehending these driving forces, managers can tap into their employees’ strengths and provide tailored support, leading to improved performance and job satisfaction.

Strengths Assessments: These identify employees’ unique talents that, when developed, result in exceptional performance. Recognizing and leveraging these strengths can help employees excel with less effort, ultimately benefiting the entire team.

Leveraging personality tests for employees is a powerful way to unlock your team’s full potential and create a thriving culture. By understanding each team member’s unique strengths, motivations, and work preferences, you can foster collaboration, minimize conflicts, and ensure that tasks are assigned in a way that maximizes performance and job satisfaction.

Cloverleaf offers a range of assessments, including free options. We recommend starting with 16 types, DISC, Enneagram, and strengths assessments. These can provide valuable insights into team strengths and opportunities for growth. Click here to start a free trial or take a test.

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Take A Cloverleaf Assessment

By taking assessments and getting actionable insights on your results, you’ll learn something new about yourself and your team.

Have you ever wondered why some colleagues seem to have a different approach to work than others? Or why do certain team members communicate differently or prioritize tasks in a particular way? Using DISC in the workplace can help teams understand one another’s behaviors and actions.

The DISC profile can help you understand yourself and your teammates because it identifies common patterns of behavior and motivation. The assessment is easy to comprehend, with only four parts: D, I, S, and C. Each letter represents a specific work style and describes the interests of each quadrant.

This post will explore using the DISC in the workplace to improve your team’s communication, collaboration, and productivity. You’ll also discover practical tips and strategies for working effectively with each type.

How Does The DISC Assessment Differ From Other Assessments?

The DISC assessment is unique in that it provides a simple, accessible way to understand and categorize behavioral tendencies, which can improve communication, teamwork, and leadership in various contexts. Other assessments may focus on different aspects of an individual’s personality or behavior, such as emotional intelligence, cognitive abilities, values, and motivating factors.

The DISC profile differs from other assessments in focusing specifically on an individual’s response to favorable and unfavorable situations. It measures their tendency toward four behavioral traits: dominance, influence, steadiness, and compliance. DISC provides insight into individual interactions and responses to stress and conflict.

DISC Dimensions Of Behavior

Why Is DISC Important In The Workplace?

Incorporating DISC into the workplace can improve communication, giving and receiving feedback, and conflict resolution to enhance team performance. Managers can create a more cohesive and effective team by understanding each person’s motivational tendencies, communication styles, and cognitive diversity.

Understanding Motivational Tendencies

One of the primary benefits of using DISC in the workplace is its ability to provide information about the motivational tendencies of individuals. For example, individuals with high Steadiness scores may value cooperation and sincerity, while those with higher Dominance scores may prioritize pushing towards goals and outcomes. Understanding these tendencies can help managers better motivate and engage members of the team.

Enhancing Communication

DISC scores can also provide insights into effectively communicating with others. For instance, a team with a disproportionate number of high Dominance scores may create an environment where those with higher Steadiness or Compliance scores do not feel comfortable contributing ideas. Managers can create a more inclusive and productive environment by understanding different communication styles.

Depersonalizing Conflict

DISC can also help depersonalize conflict by providing a common communication language for a team. For example, using a team dashboard to display aggregate DISC results can help team members better understand each other’s conflict management styles and triggers. This can lead to developing a “conflict contract” that establishes group norms for dealing with conflict and helps generate team buy-in.

Capitalizing on Cognitive Diversity

Studies have shown that teams with higher cognitive diversity produce better outcomes. DISC can help teams understand their level of cognitive diversity and how to harness it to improve outcomes. Using the team DISC wheel, managers can see where the team lacks certain styles or where a member may play a critical role in achieving team goals.

Defining the Right Roles

DISC can help managers better understand how team members fit into their roles. Managers can create a more productive and engaged team using DISC to match individuals with roles that align with their behavioral patterns. Assigning tasks that conflict with their natural style may lead to burnout or turnover.

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The D Type Personality In The Workplace

Dominance: Balancing Drive with Team Dynamics

The D Type Personality In The Workplace

The D in DISC stands for Dominance, which characterizes driven, goal-oriented, and assertive individuals. They are natural leaders who seek control and authority, viewing them as positive qualities. However, in their quest for success, D types may prioritize tasks and outcomes over the well-being and contributions of their co-workers.

High-D individuals must balance their drive for achievement with understanding how their actions affect their team dynamics. Overly focusing on tasks can dismiss the importance of building relationships and collaborating. This can ultimately hinder team success and create a hostile work environment.

Leaders with high-D traits can motivate their team towards a shared goal while creating a culture of openness, respect, and trust. By balancing their dominant nature with empathy and consideration for others, they can harness their strengths to achieve success for the team.

The I Type Personality In The Workplace

Influence: Harnessing Energy for Collaborative Success

The I Type Personality In The Workplace

“I” stands for Influence in the DISC model, representing individuals prioritizing social interaction and relationship-building. I types are energized by being around people and are drawn to change, seeing it as a positive force that can bring about new opportunities. They excel at connecting with others, using their charisma and personal skills to generate enthusiasm and excitement.

One potential downside of the I style is that their enthusiasm and love of variety can sometimes lead to impulsiveness and distractibility. They may lose sight of the end goal or become disorganized in pursuing new experiences. As a result, it can be helpful for Is to work with someone who can provide structure and help keep them focused on the task at hand.

Influencing types bring a valuable perspective to teams, and their ability to build relationships and generate excitement can help keep teams motivated and engaged. By understanding their strengths and potential pitfalls, Is can use their skills to benefit their team and the organization.

The S Type Personality In The Workplace

Steadiness: Fostering Team Harmony and Collaboration

The S Type Personality In The Workplace

These individuals are team players who prioritize a harmonious and inclusive team culture. They value stability and seek to create that for their team.

Others often consider them to be great listeners and have supportive teammates. They don’t like change or conflict and rarely initiate it, even if it costs them. It’s also essential to include them in any team decisions, give them ample notice if any changes need to be made, and seek their opinions.

S-Types like to ensure everyone is heard and foster a strong sense of connection among teammates. By understanding and leveraging the strengths of the S style, you can create a positive and supportive team environment.

The C Type Personality In The Workplace

Conscientiousness: Leveraging Attention to Detail for Team Success

The C Type Personality In The Workplace

The letter C represents traits that value a high focus on details and a desire for excellence. Individuals with this personality type are motivated to deliver quality work and are experts in their area of work. They hold themselves and their team to high standards and seek feedback to ensure their work meets expectations.

While conscientious individuals bring value to a team, they can find it stressful when faced with last-minute changes or rushed schedules. It’s important to give them adequate notice and allow them to work independently. They appreciate regular feedback but must be presented with kindness, as they can be sensitive to criticism.

These individuals thrive when given tasks that require attention to detail and expertise. They don’t need much collaboration or social interaction and may prefer to work from a private office or home. You can maximize their contribution to the team’s success by recognizing and leveraging their strengths.

How To Use The DISC Assessment With Teams?

The DISC circle illustrates how individuals with different personality types respond to change differently.

Responses to Change Based on DISC Types

The top of the circle represents the Ds and Is, who are drawn to change and view it as a positive force that can help them achieve their goals. In contrast, the Ss and Cs at the bottom of the circle are change-averse and can perceive change as an opposing force that may impede their effectiveness. They fear that chaos may arise in the team due to change.

People vs. Task Orientation

The DISC model further categorizes individuals into two groups based on their preference for people or task-oriented work. Those on the I and S side are drawn to people, collaboration, and service, and those on the D and C sides are attracted to tasks, execution, and accomplishment.

Effective Communication Strategies For Each DISC Type

The way people communicate also varies based on their place in the circle. Ds prioritize clarity over diplomacy and may come across as blunt, while Is focus on building relationships and connection.

Ss prioritize harmony and use soft-spoken, affirming communication, making direct communication difficult. Cs prioritize clear communication based on data and have a black-and-white approach to good and bad.

It’s helpful to slow down and use a measured approach when speaking to Ss and Cs, especially when giving feedback or asking for information. Providing notice and time to synthesize information is crucial for Ss and Cs.

Providing advanced notice about impending changes or project deadlines can help gain buy-in from Cs and Ss. Communicating how changes will benefit the organization or team can help achieve their support.

D and I personality types respond well to direct, confident, and energetic communication. They appreciate clear goals, objectives, and deadlines. When communicating with a D, it’s essential to be clear and concise, avoiding too much detail or ambiguity.

When communicating with an I, it’s important to be enthusiastic and engaging, using stories and anecdotes to keep their attention. They appreciate a more conversational tone and love to be recognized for their contributions.

D and I personality types appreciate a sense of urgency and enthusiasm in communication, and giving them space to express their ideas and opinions is important. They also respond well to visual aids and are more likely to be motivated by positive feedback and recognition than criticism.

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Using DISC To Improve Communication During Team Meetings

During meetings, it’s important to be aware of communication patterns that can reveal someone’s DISC style. The Ds and Is tend to speak up first and express their opinions, while the Ss and Cs may reserve their comments. To ensure all members contribute, set aside time for Ss and Cs to provide feedback and opinions. For example, dedicating the last 15 minutes of the meeting can be effective. Creating a cadence for participation can also encourage involvement.

When Ds and Is lead meetings, ensuring everyone’s voice is heard is essential. They may assume that others will speak up if they have an idea, but encouraging participation is important. Awareness of each DISC type can help create routines that allow for informed decisions and ensure everyone’s voice is heard.

Using Cloverleaf's DISC Personality Test To Nuance Unique Personality Characteristics In The Workplace

DISC results often include a spectrum that reflects where individuals fall on each of the four quadrants. It’s possible for individuals to strongly prefer one quadrant or be more balanced, meaning they won’t have a dominant trait.

disc assessment

One of the unique features of the Cloverleaf DISC test is that it reveals some conflicting values that individuals may possess. For instance, individuals with a strong I and C may experience conflicting values because they enjoy a fast-paced environment with people and frequent changes from the I. Still, from the C, they also desire consistency.

Some characteristics may present less in individuals because they are self-regulating, which is a superpower. Balancing opposing values is a unique strength, as it allows one to see both sides of an issue.

Those with strengths in opposing quadrants, like IC and DS, have complementary strengths that can benefit a team without a partner or collaborator. This ability to see both sides of the picture can drive external collaboration and build consensus while maintaining attention to detail and striving for excellence.

In contrast, a traditional influence strength may become exhausted with detailed work. Still, someone with a balanced profile can have the energy to dig into the data and make new discoveries.

The rare combination of a high S and D result is present in only 2% of Cloverleaf users. These individuals possess a strong pioneering driver while valuing connection and being highly supportive of their team. They love change, power, and authority but also desire stability and harmony with others.

While some people with this combination may focus their drive inward rather than solely on achieving goals, it’s important to note that there is still a strong desire to move forward.

Conclusion

Each quadrant in the DISC profile is driven by particular questions that they find most important.

  • Ds are goal-oriented and prioritize understanding where they’re going and how to get there.

  • Influencers prioritize collaboration, resourcefulness, and the enjoyment of the task.

  • Steadiness drivers want to know how they will execute a task and how it will impact the team’s well-being.

  • Conscientious individuals want to understand the task, including its standards, expectations, and boundaries (such as time, resources, and commitments).

By using DISC in the workplace, you can tailor your communication and approach to meet their unique needs and preferences.

Understanding DISC results and the communication styles of each quadrant can significantly improve your team’s dynamics and productivity. By knowing the questions that each quadrant is interested in, you can communicate more effectively, meet everyone’s needs, and gain their buy-in faster.

Taking the DISC assessment and inviting your team to do the same can help you leverage everyone’s talents and gifts to achieve better results. Visit cloverleaf.me to start your profile and begin your journey towards better teamwork.

Hard times are unique opportunities to deepen relationships. But we may not know how to get a deep and vulnerable conversation started, especially in a work environment.

Using Enneagram group discussion questions can help individuals and team members learn more about one another. If you or a coworker do not know your Enneagram type, take our free assessment to help guide your conversation.

In all meaningful discussions, there are two roles – the listener and the processor. One person should be the processor for all three questions, while all others practice as listeners.

The listener’s main role is to…listen! Listening can be difficult. When someone shares their experience, it’s normal to want to respond quickly with something like, “Me too. I was thinking….”

However, this attempt to relate quickly can unintentionally prohibit the other person’s ability to continue processing. The listener must resist the urge and focus on listening. The listener can ask clarifying questions to help keep all focus on the processor, giving them safe space and time to think out loud.

The processor’s main role is to…process! The processor should try to elaborate and avoid giving one-sentence answers. Be curious about yourself, honest about difficult insights, and hopeful about how discussing the Enneagram can help you discover your unique work style and motivations.

Below are three Enneagram group discussion questions that can help you use the Enneagram at work or with friends to increase personal growth and development.

Note: Before starting, the listener will need to know the processor’s enneagram type.

Question #1: Listener asks Processor: “As an Enneagram Type ____, your core fear is likely ____. In what ways do you think that can affect you?”

For reference, below are the core fears of each Enneagram Type.

Enneagram 1: Being corrupt, losing a sense of integrity; being wrong or lazy

Enneagram 2: Being unloved or unwanted

Enneagram 3: Being worthless or undesirable apart from achievements; being disrespected

Enneagram 4: Not being unique and being seen as worthless for this

Enneagram 5: Being helpless or incompetent; not being knowledgeable

Enneagram 6: Not have direction or support; not be able to keep going on their own; uncertainty

Enneagram 7: Needs and wants are not fulfilled by others; pain; deprivation

Enneagram 8: Being limited or controlled

Enneagram 9: Being disconnected from others, being confronted

Do you need help navigating your work relationships or developing a work culture where people can thrive? Download the free Enneagram Guide To Healthy Teams In The Workplace.

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Question #2: The Listener asks the Processor: “As an Enneagram Type ____, you’re likely motivated by ____. What are two things you can do this week that motivate you?”

For reference, below are the core motivations of each Enneagram Type.

Enneagram 1: Solving problems and bringing order and organization to chaos

Enneagram 2: Helping others

Enneagram 3: Optimism and achieving goals

Enneagram 4: Creativity, finding deeper meaning, and experiencing authentic feelings

Enneagram 5: Learning and having a deep knowledge of topics

Enneagram 6: Creating and finding security, having a duty or responsibility to complete something

Enneagram 7: Being happy and contributing to the world to relieve suffering

Enneagram 8: Being self-reliant and fighting for just causes

Enneagram 9: Keeping the peace and connecting others

Question #3: The listener asks the Processor: “As a friend (or coworker), what is the best way I can help you with this?”

Whether you are a new manager hoping to build trust or a coworker who wants to understand a teammate better, asking these three questions can lead to powerful learning about one another.

To further explore how to improve workplace communication, check out the post, 4 Effective Enneagram Activities To Help Develop Your Team.

Did you know that Cloverleaf can help you use your Enneagram results to sharpen your professional development and work environment?

Click here to learn more about how Cloverleaf turns leading personality and strength-based assessments into actionable coaching inside your enterprise organization.

The Enneagram does what a typical personality test doesn’t by exposing what drives decisions and behavior. It taps into your emotional intelligence and how you conceptualize the world and conform it to one of nine distinct personality types.

The Enneagram can be highly beneficial in the workplace, helping you better serve your teammates, peers, and clients. The assessment gives insight into each person’s perspectives and motivations, aiding communication and cohesiveness.

The Enneagram personality tool can be extremely helpful in the workplace, allowing you to better serve your teammates, peers, and clients. The test gives you insight into each person’s perspectives and motivations, aiding in communication and cohesiveness.

This article will help you incorporate the Enneagram into your workplace by explaining the value of starting the discussion, tips on starting the conversation, and stressing the importance of relationship building.

Lastly, we’ll discuss the nine enneagram types and how their personalities intertwine with their work.

The Value of Discussing Enneagram Types at Work

The Enneagram model reveals more than what you see on the surface level. Although you may think you know and understand someone by the personality traits and patterns they display, without knowing their internal motivations, you can’t truly support or lead them as a teammate or leader.

When you discuss Enneagram types at work, you open up the possibility for empathy, compassion, and understanding. A team that works well together performs better, communicates better, and enjoys more purpose-filled work.

By openly discussing Enneagram types, you can better understand yourself and others and gain insight into motivations and behaviors. You’ll see an overall improvement in conflict resolution, teamwork, and morale.

However, starting this conversation may be more challenging than it seems. Many people struggle to open up and be vulnerable in professional settings.

While you can’t force anyone to participate, the long-term reward of a cohesive team far outweighs the short-term inconvenience of being vulnerable.

Do you need help navigating your work relationships or developing a work culture where people can thrive? Download the free Enneagram Guide To Healthy Teams In The Workplace.

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Inside this free guide, you’ll learn:

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Relationship Building: The Importance of Getting To Know Your Teammates

By openly discussing and comparing Enneagram types, you can better understand yourself and others and gain insight into motivations and behaviors. You’ll see an overall improvement in conflict resolution, teamwork, and morale.

4 Reasons To Share The Enneagram With Your Team

You Spend A Significant Amount Of Time Together

You likely find that you spend more time with your work team than any other group in your life. The relationships you build with these people can benefit you both short and long-term.

Healthy Work Relationships Reduce Stress

A positive working relationship with your team dramatically reduces the stress and mental energy you exert during a typical workday.

As a result, you spend less time thinking about how to avoid conflict and more time focused on decision-making, which will help your team become efficient.

Authenticity Leads To Better Performance

When you know team members deeper, collective self-doubt goes out the window, and members become more confident when everyone gets to show up at work as their authentic selves.

Feeling Connected As A Team Strengthens Collaboration In The Workplace

Having a personal connection with your teammates is essential because you will feel supported. It’s common for people to feel the need to be self-sufficient in the workplace, but true harmony lies with a team that understands interdependency.

Your work habits and communication strategies depend primarily on fear and internal motivations. When you identify these in yourself and others, you will have better self-awareness and a heightened appreciation for teamwork.

Enneagram Types At Work: Recognizing One Another’s Communication Style, Habits, and Strengths

This model includes nine types of Enneagram styles. Once you learn your Enneagram number, you will better understand your role within your team and can then leverage this knowledge to better yourself and support your team’s growth. If you are still unsure of your type, take our free Enneagram test.

Your work habits and communication strategies depend largely on fear and internal motivations. When you identify these in yourself and others, you will have better self-awareness and a heightened appreciation for teamwork.

Below are the nine Enneagram types, their communication, and how each personality can “show up” at work.

Enneagram Ones at Work

Enneagram Type Ones are referred to as The Reformer. This personality type values hard work, self-control, and setting high standards. They find motivation by being or doing things “right” and fear being imperfect or perceived as wrong.

They’re detail-oriented and typically the person you go to when dealing with difficult situations that require accuracy, quality control, and improvement.

Communication Style

Polite, thoughtful, detailed, and well-formulated. Ones should be mindful that they can become demanding because they have high expectations. Encouraging a One to share their perspective openly can help the team mitigate potential risks.

Under Stress: Move to Four

  • Stress impacts Ones with a sense of hopelessness, and they become their own worst critics.

When Secure: Move to Seven

  • When Ones feel secure, they lighten up and are more spontaneous.

Type Ones are people of practical action who are always concerned with doing the right thing. One’s are efficient, organized, and dependable to complete the task. 

They do things in a professional, honest and ethical manner. Ones have a knack for creating structures that allow others to thrive.

Enneagram Twos at Work

Enneagram Type Twos are known as The Helper. They are positive, people-oriented individuals invested in the feelings and needs of others. Twos are motivated by being needed and fear feeling rejected by others. 

Communication Style

Relational, caring, demonstrative, and supportive. The perceived health of their relationships influences how they communicate with others. They prioritize expressing care and are grateful when others do the same; a thank you can go a long way.

Under Stress: Move to Eight

  • Stress causes Twos to become aggressive (especially when they don’t feel

appreciated), resulting in attempting to blame or control others.

When Secure: Move to Four

  • When Twos feel secure, they are more transparent and exhibit creative potential. They can feel and express their full range of emotions responsibly.

This type demonstrates caring and thoughtful behavior and makes it a point to be there whenever you need them. Twos are terrific in roles that require strong people skills, anticipating the needs of others, and social interaction.

A Type Two’s strength can also surface as a weakness. Twos may lack boundaries, losing sight of their ideas, needs, and priorities with lower self-awareness.

They are consummate team players, always opting for self-sacrifice over self-promotion and happy to take on extra work when others are overloaded or in a jam. 

Twos are attentive, appreciative, generous, warm, playful, and nurturing. They usually have a large circle of acquaintances and fiercely guard relationships.

Enneagram Threes at Work

Enneagram Type Threes are referred to as The Achiever. These individuals tend to be ambitious, highly productive, and appear as the symbol of success in the workplace.

Threes values appreciation and recognition. Hard work, goal-oriented, organization, and decisiveness are trademarks of this type. They are motivated by admiration and are fearful of lacking value to others.

Communication Style

Straightforward, efficient, focused, and confident. They prepare for meetings to ensure they are clear and goal-focused. It is important to them for others to reciprocate respect and value while communicating. 

Under Stress: Move to Nine

  • Stress can cause Threes to lose focus and be preoccupied with busy work.

When Secure: Move to Six

  • When Threes feel secure, they are more committed and loyal. They find it easier to identify their emotions and connect with others.

In pursuit of success, Enneagram Threes may railroad others in the workplace, become workaholics, and struggle with accountability.

Threes are energized by being productive, achieving success, and avoiding failure. They can be playful, giving, responsible, and well-regarded by others in the community.

Threes can complete work efficiently and competently to ensure they reach personal goals. A Three has a keen ability to size up tasks and understand the dynamics of work groups. They can also be inspiring and motivate other people to excel. 

Enneagram Fours at Work

Enneagram Type Fours are creative, unconventional individuals within a team known as The Originalist. Fours are motivated to express their individuality and demonstrate fear when perceived as ordinary. They value authenticity and stand by their beliefs.

Communication Style

Intense, authentic, creative, and empathetic. Fours have a strong desire to be understood and want to know how those around them feel.

Enneagram Fours value relationships and connections with other people. They seek to experience authentic feelings and to be understood. This type avoids the ordinary and searches for deeper meaning in their work.

Under Stress: Move to Two

  • When experiencing stress, Fours can become overly dependent upon others and seek assurance.

When Secure: Move to One

  • When Fours feel secure, they act on their ideals, practice organization, and use self-control.

Fours can also be empathetic in relationships, supportive, gentle, playful, passionate, and witty. They are self-revealing and can form bonds quickly with others.

Type Fours have an innate talent for identifying and expressing a sense of harmony within their surroundings. They have a gift for helping others to see beauty in their work and are great teammates to help identify unexpected solutions to problems that others may overlook.

Enneagram Fives at Work

Enneagram Type Fives are known as The Sage. They are thoughtful, cerebral types who see and interpret the world through information. Fives are motivated by a desire to be competent. They strive to be capable in all aspects and fear looking uninformed.

Fives are independent thinkers and typically enjoy working alone to process and have time to problem-solve. They are good listeners, observant, and help others understand the truth more soberly and objectively.

Communication Style

Brief, professional, objective, and reserved. Fives rely on research, insight, and knowledge before communicating and, therefore, may need time to share the next steps or ideas. This type appreciates the patience and willingness to listen to new perspectives while conversing.

Under Stress: Move to Seven

  • Stress can cause Fives to be easily distracted and disorganized. It can also cause them to detach themselves from the team.

When Secure: Move to Eight

  • When Fives feel secure, they will exude more energy and action, take the initiative, and be decisive.

Fives are kind, perceptive, open-minded, self-sufficient, and trustworthy to teammates. They have strong analytical skills and are good at problem-solving. Fives can be very helpful when teams need objectivity, clarification, or exploration of new ideas.

Enneagram Fives are naturally open and receptive to new facts and impressions, discovering new ideas, research, and innovations – particularly those that are provocative, surprising, unconventional, and profound. 

Enneagram Sixes at Work

Enneagram Type Sixes are referred to as The Loyalist. They value preparedness and are dependable individuals you can trust with important decisions. This type is most motivated by stability and fears lacking direction.

Sixes possess excellent problem-solving skills and thrive on helping to create solutions. They are adept at identifying potential problems and researching viable solutions.

Communication Style

Inquisitive, witty, logical, and ironic. Sixes prefer to focus on the task at hand and typically are relational in their approach. They appreciate when others value their input and interpret their concern as a desire for the project’s success.

Under Stress: Move to Three

  • Stress can cause Sixes to discredit their feelings or drive them toward workaholic tendencies.

When Secure: Move to Nine

  • When Sixes feel secure, they can reframe unnerving thoughts, accept others, and lower their suspicions.

Sixes are warm, playful, open, loyal, supportive, honest, fair, and reliable. They are cooperative individuals willing to do what it takes to support the team.

Sixes value experience and data when considering new solutions or next steps. When deciding, a Six will often look to a book, leader, or institution for reliable answers.

Enneagram Sevens at Work

Enneagram Type Sevens are known as The Enthusiast. They are spontaneous, imaginative, charming people who bring fun to the workplace. They’re motivated to be happy and are fearful of experiencing limitations.

Sevens have a positive outlook on life, and their enthusiasm proves a valuable asset to their team. They see opportunities others may miss but can be impulsive and fail to see projects through. 

Communication Style

Fast-paced, energetic, visionary, and confident. Sevens like to keep conversations upbeat. When communicating with them, look for areas of agreement and opportunities that foster synergy.

Under Stress: Move to One

  • Stress can lead Sevens towards criticism, fault-finding, and narrow-mindedness.

When Secure: Move to Five

  • When Sevens feel secure, they accept the good and the bad. They can slow their pace and focus.

Sevens are lighthearted, generous, outgoing, and caring. They enjoy sharing new experiences with friends and teammates. This type typically radiates joy and optimism, expresses childlike astonishment, and experiences life as a gift.

Enneagram Eights at Work

Enneagram Type Eights are referred to as The Challenger. These individuals stand up for what they believe in and care about justice. Eights find motivation in remaining in control and fears appearing weak or vulnerable.

Eights often emerge as natural leaders because they are action-takers and can sometimes overstep boundaries to move work forward; however, this can cause relational strain with teammates.

Communication Style

Authoritative, direct, bold, and strategic. Eights communicate in a straightforward, passionate manner. They are comfortable with debate and rarely avoid conflict. To connect with an Eight, share honestly and openly, without hesitation.

Under Stress: Move to Five

  • Stress causes Eights to withdraw and become rigid. They will lose touch with their emotions and ignore signs that it is time to take a break.

When Secure: Move to Two

  • When Eights feel secure, they become relatable to others, exhibiting warmth and compassion.

Type Eights are self-reliant, strong, and independent. They can also be loyal, caring, cheerful, and generous. Eights will take the initiative and prefer to be in charge to exercise the freedom to choose what they believe is the right course of action.

Eights can also give others a sense of strength through their positive support. They instinctively know when something is “off” within the environment and do not hesitate when sharing their opinion. 

This type often is a source of strength for others, likes to protect the weak, and develops a tremendous sense of responsibility.

Enneagram Nines at Work

Enneagram Type Nines are known as the Peacemaker. They are mediators of the group and thrive when helping differing parties resolve conflict. Their motivation stems from a desire for peace of mind and fears of experiencing overwhelming strife.

Nines can handle difficult conversations and remain level-headed. They are commonly the person people go to when they need a resolution or a second opinion concerning a pressing issue.

Their feelings do not drive them; they have keen instincts that help them gather wisdom to share. Nines are not confrontational but can navigate conflict to ensure both sides feel understood.

Communication Style

Affirming, supportive, easygoing, and diplomatic. Nines are open to others and value their opinions. They enjoy meaningful conversation and appreciate when others reciprocate the same.

Nines can become passive and indecisive when they do not feel understood; therefore, inviting their input is a great way to ensure you receive their counsel.

Under Stress: Move to Six

  • Stress impacts Nines with a sense of anxiety and indecisiveness. They can begin to overcommit and doubt their abilities.

When Secure: Move to Three

  • When Nines feel secure, they tend to be more practical, productive, focused, and confident.

Nines want to keep the peace, connect with others, and avoid conflict. Typically, Nines are kind, gentle, reassuring, supportive, loyal, and nonjudgmental. This type can exhibit various characteristics, from gentle and mild-mannered to independent and forceful.

They have excellent listening skills, are objective, and excel at unbiased mediation with the ability to see and appreciate the positive aspects of both sides.

The Cloverleaf Assessment Difference

How To Use The Enneagram In your Workplace?

You can use Enneagram in your work environment by openly discussing the types and focusing on how it affects your work habits and relationships. Each person on your team is unique and constantly evolving. For additional ideas, check out the post, 4 Effective Enneagram Activities To Help Develop Your Team.

The Enneagram allows you and your team to do some introspection and collaborate to find the best ways to leverage each other’s strengths for the benefit of the group.

Which Enneagram Types Work Best Together?

Each Enneagram type has the potential to work well with others. Of the nine styles, no two are more compatible than the other. Instead, each individual must choose to be understanding and compassionate to the needs of the other.

Different situations or circumstances arise with different characteristics in each personality type. You can work well with anyone by acknowledging what the other person is motivated by and leveraging those strengths.

Using the Enneagram at work should help you become a better team and understand one another better. Identifying the nine types at work can help teams improve collaboration and teamwork rather than segregating or partnering up with people you find more suitable to your own type.

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