CONNECTION—that’s what it’s all about for Integrators, and connector is the role they often play on a team. Sometimes an Integrator is focused on creating connections between people, and other times on connections between ideas. Either way, Integrators like working on teams more than toiling away in solitude. They’re trusting and they forge deep relationships—beyond networking or teamwork—getting up close and personal to form real friendships with colleagues.
And there are lots of reasons you’d want to be friends with an Integrator. For one thing, they go out of their way to be helpful. You know that one colleague who’s always happy to pitch in and does so with a smile? They’re probably an Integrator.
Integrators are great listeners and observers too. They pay close attention to what’s being said and can often sense even unspoken emotions and reactions. And then they take others’ feelings into account. An Integrator knows that sticks and stones aren’t the only things that can hurt relationships—words can too, and they bear this in mind when they consider how to deliver a message. Integrators place a high value on traditions, and this too reflects their sensitivity to the feelings of others. After all, where do traditions come from? People. And from the Integrator’s perspective, things that are important to people deserve respect.
Ask people the best thing about Drivers, and a clear theme emerges: They get sh*t done. Even when it’s difficult. Especially when it’s difficult. Because if you had to capture the spirit of Drivers in a word, it would be CHALLENGE. Drivers love a challenge, and they love to challenge. They are focused and competitive. To get the results they want, Drivers will calculate the shortest possible path and stay on course despite whatever, or whoever, gets in their way. This directness infuses everything they do, from the way they make decisions to the way they interact with others. They like to get to the point.
Drivers are not the warmest and fuzziest of the types. They don’t mince words and they don’t sugarcoat. Expecting small talk? Drivers see it as a waste of time. No clear agenda? Come back when you have one. Vague ambitions? Intuitive conclusions? Emotional interpretations? Good luck with that. Drivers are logical, technical, and quantitative. They want data and structure. Try to engage them without these things, and they have no qualms voicing their displeasure. Even if you do arrive armed with facts, don’t expect Drivers to accept them at face value. They will likely question your data, dispute your premise, and argue with your conclusion. But often that’s not a bad sign. Drivers are competitive and love to debate. They respect someone that can go toe to toe with them—and they don’t give out points to people who are self-eff acing. Tell a Driver you’re not that good at something and, chances are, they will believe you.
This is the second post in a four-part series about the Business Chemistry types. Read the post first in the series, about Pioneers, and watch out for the upcoming posts about Drivers and Integrators. Subscribe here so you don’t miss them!
If we had to pick one word to represent what the Guardian values, it would be STABILITY. A Guardian knows it’s essential to forge a solid foundation before building anything skyward. And when it comes to how the Guardian does things, many aspects of their working style serve to establish and maintain such stability. They’re methodical, careful, disciplined, meticulous, and exacting. (How else to ensure a foundation is sound?) Guardians believe it’s important to follow a structured process when completing a task, and they like a bit of structure in their work environments and meetings too.
*This first post in a four-part series about the Business Chemistry types. Post two, about Guardians, has since been posted as well. Watch out for posts three (about Drivers), and four (about Integrators). Subscribe here so you don’t miss them!
If we could capture the essence of the Pioneer in one word, it would be POSSIBILITIES. Pioneers love imagining what could be and don’t hesitate to reach beyond the status quo. Expressions like “What if…?”, “Picture this…”, “Yes, and…”, and “Why not?” are music to a Pioneer’s ears, and often are lead-ins to lively brainstorms. Pioneers are big fans of collaborative idea generation. They’re very comfortable with ambiguity, and highly adaptable to change—whether they’re the ones initiating it, as is often the case, or not.
Strong Pioneers tend to be easy to spot because they’re typically high energy and outgoing. They’re the ones you can hear all the way down the hallway before you even get to the conference room. Or more likely, you’ll hear them coming down the hallway as you wait in the conference room, because they’ll be running late. They have little regard for rigid structure, and an almost allergic aversion to details. That agenda the team put together so painstakingly? Don’t expect the Pioneers to follow it. Their thinking can be non-linear and resists constraint. That detailed review of the pivot table analysis you had planned? Their eyes will blur and their minds will wander as you strain what paltry patience they possess. But give them a juicy, open-ended challenge and a whiteboard, and they’ll be formidable idea generators.
Are you headed to the Indiana Conference for Women next week? Us, too! Dr. Suzanne Vickberg, Business Chemistry’s Lead Researcher, is scheduled to speak on Nov. 8 at one of the largest one-day events for professional and entrepreneurial women in the Midwest. Come join us at this exciting conference!
Suzanne will introduce the power of Business Chemistry during this educational and inspirational women’s conference, which seeks to build a strong ecosystem to help women build careers, create companies, and experience lives that are rewarding, healthy and fulfilling. The Founders believe (and research shows) that environments that foster the growth and development of women lead to healthier and more resilient communities and stronger economic growth.
To support the goal of personal growth and development, Dr. Suz will lead participants through an interactive and engaging experience that will help them learn about what makes some teams excel, while others fumble. She’ll introduce techniques that help teams thrive, tips for leaders that will motivate individuals, and insights that can help you build powerful work relationships. It will be an engaging and fun learning event you don’t want to miss.
My boss, who is a Pioneer and a big Halloween fan, challenged our team to submit our Halloween costume photos for our next team meeting. A few of the team members instantly began to get excited and collaborate on costume ideas, while others were less enthusiastic. As I was observing the ideas by my colleagues, I quietly pondered the question: Do Business Chemistry types align with particular costume preferences?
So, in the spirit of Halloween fun, we thought we’d hunch about what one’s costume selection might say about their working style (now you know how we have fun when we’re not working at the Deloitte Greenhouse):
Beneath a warrior, superhero, or king costume you could find a Driver. These characters are focused and competitive, and let nothing stand in the way of making progress on achieving their goals. They save the world from impending doom and make it home for supper—on time. They’re not particularly worried that they tore up an entire city to save you from an alien invasion because it had to get done. And, when facing their nemesis, they are logical in finding a solution to thwart the evil-doer’s plans.
The good witch, friendly ghost, or furry animal costume just might have an Integrator inside. These characters are diplomatic and non-confrontational. They are found in fairy-tales in which everyone gets along, finds the other slipper, and lives happily-ever-after. They say hello to everyone in the village and do no harm. Integrators’ costumes aren’t scary and encourage the spirit of sharing candy.
A Pioneer may choose a costume no one saw coming. They are the “hanging chad,” the Southern belle turned into “Taco Belle,” or the couple that shows up as peanut butter and jelly. They didn’t buy their costume ahead of time when there were plenty of choices. Instead, they must go through everyone’s closet a couple of hours before the party to pull together something you’ll never forget.
A Guardian might be a bit reluctant to embrace this whole dressing up thing. They may feel they’ll look silly, or be concerned they won’t have time to find the right costume, or want more specific parameters for dressing like something they are not. Or, they just might surprise everyone by using a costume as an opportunity to leave their reserve behind and become their alter ego for a day. A Guardian, who doesn’t want to dress up, may want to join the fun by serving as a judge for the costume contest. They will judge everyone fairly, ignore crowd influence, and follow to the letter the rules and guidelines set for the contest.
Of course, while the Business Chemistry types are based on a mathematical algorithm, our costume theory is just a fun hunch. What’s your take? Does your Halloween costume fit with your type? Send your photos and let us know!
Most organizations hire suppliers based on their capabilities and cost, but integrating five attributes of cultural fit to the mix can lead to healthier and more sustainable supplier relationships. Forbes contributor Kate Vitasek covers a recent social debate about typical hiring practices, and whether they apply to supplier relationships, sparked by the authors of Practical Magic for Crafting Powerful Work Relationships, Deloitte’s Kim Christfort and Suzanne Vickberg.
The choreography! The tap-your-toe inspirational music! The applause-worthy costume design! The unforgettable performances by the Pioneer, Driver, Guardian, and Integrator! It’s just another day with Deloitte’s Business Chemistry team. What could your team do when it learns to click, not clash? Watch this awesome video and share it with colleagues!
Note: Pioneers love exclamation marks! It’s just so exciting!
Businesses have long used personality tests in recruitment and in training and development. Indeed, it is a rare manager who has not been through some sort of personality assessment. But, with workforces becoming more diverse in terms of race, gender and age, it is arguable that leaders need to have a much better understanding of what makes their colleagues tick and how they can encourage them to work together effectively.