Discover Yourself – Stress and Insights Discovery

When discussing personality types, it is important to remember that people will express their personality traits in different ways depending upon the environment that they are currently in. For example, Insights Discovery is based around personality assessment for a business environment, so it reflects people’s personality style at work more than when they are at home. A key psychological factor which can have a large influence on personality traits is stress: people will express different aspects of their personalities and will react in a more extreme way when they are stressed.

As work can frequently be stressful, it is helpful for managers to have an understanding of how different personality types react to stress, what those stressors are, and how managers can help to alleviate this stress. Today I’ll be sharing some thoughts on how stress affects each of the different Insights Discovery color energies.

Cool Blues and Stress

Cool blues are cautious and thoughtful, and they like to plan in advance. Therefore, they are stressed by situations where there is a lack of structure for them to work within, or where they are missing important information which they need to do their job. They hate to turn in work that is of low quality, so they do not like to be rushed and will be unhappy if they feel their work is not up to par. They also value efficiency and exactness, so they will feel frustrated by wasting time.

A manager can tell when a cool blue is stressed because they will nitpick over details and question the worth or efficiency of a process. They may become obstinate and dig in their heels if they feel they do not have the information that they need to complete a task. If they feel they are not getting the support they need, they can stop communicating and start making decisions without approval from higher ups. This stress can be managed by getting feedback from them along the course of a project, making sure they have the information that they need, and working with them to analyze inefficiencies in processes.

Earth Greens and Stress

Earth greens care most of all about fairness and positive interpersonal relationships, so they will feel stressed when they perceive there is unfair or impersonal treatment of themselves or others. They care deeply about their ethical values so asking them to bend the rules is another cause of stress for them. They also value a calm and supportive atmosphere so they may become stressed by loud environments, frequent interruptions, or feeling that they are under excessive time pressure.

When an earth green is feeling stressed they will tend to withdraw into themselves and become overly cautious. They may be personally hurt by the unfair treatment of someone else, even if it does not directly affect them, and this hurt can be expressed in a judgmental way. They may see themselves as the only one who cares about their values.

To manage a stressed earth green, a manager needs to take time to support them in person. There should be plenty of face-to-face contact, and the manger should reiterate that they understand the earth green reacts this way out of a sincere desire for fairness. Where necessary, a manager should be transparent and acknowledge that decisions are not always perfectly fair. But they should then convey that this needs to be kept in perspective – overall, management cares about being fair and takes steps to implement this value as much as possible.

Sunshine Yellows and Stress

Sunshine yellows are sociable and outgoing, so they become stressed and unhappy when they have no opportunities for personal interactions or for fun. While seeing co-workers joking around might seem like a waste of their time, these moments of joviality are essential for the job satisfaction of a sunshine yellow. They can also feel stressed by rigidity and a lack of flexibility, and they can become hurt by what they perceive as personal rejection from co-workers.

The warning signs of stress from a sunshine yellow are that they become overly emotional, even melodramatic. They may become opinionated and argumentative when they feel that they are being excluded from the group. To mitigate this, a manager should allow as much flexibility as possible so the sunshine yellow can prioritize and organize their own tasks. If they become overly fixated on a feeling of exclusion, a manger can re-direct their energies onto a new task which can be an effective distraction. Sunshine yellows highly value approval so they should be allowed to save face and maintain their reputation wherever possible.

Fiery Reds and Stress

Fiery reds care about action and decisiveness, so they are stressed by a lack of focus and a lack of control. Waffling, u-turns, and indecision are frustrating to them because they throw themselves fully into a project and they do not like having to readjust their goals. When a fiery red is stressed they will double down on their decisive and confident traits, and they can become aggressive, demanding, and overbearing. They can become snappy or rude to co-workers and they will be visibly impatient when they think a decision is taking too long.

To handle a stressed-out fiery red, a manager can take two different approaches. The first is to allow the fiery red to take control of the project or process, and trust that they will push forward until a decision is made. This is a good approach for an experienced and trusted fiery red. The alternative approach, if the manager is not confident in the fiery red’s ability to lead yet, is to get them to take time out away from the project. Now might be a good time to send them on a training course or to learn a process from another department. Or they could be directed to a different aspect of the project which requires immediate action, which will give them something to do while further decisions are being made.

To learn more about how personality assessments can benefit managers and employees, visit www.discoveryourself.com.

Does wearing a mask in the workplace mean you are “fake”?

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When you are the supervisor or the manager at your workplace, you are being counted on (and paid too) by your employer to effectively teach, manage, and develop the employees they hire. With the uniqueness of humans, no two employees will respond the same way to getting trained, managed, developed, or even disciplined.

Some supervisors and managers just supervise and manage only one way. Sometimes they don’t care and have that “it’s my way or the highway” attitude. Those managers run the risk of burning out after a few years on the job. And some supervisors and managers just don’t know how to manage any other way. These managers won’t burn out, but will only get average work quality from the employees they supervise and manage. Does wearing a “mask” in the workplace make you fake? No. In fact, this is a great way to communicate with different personalities, and to get above and excellent work from your employees.

What does it mean to wear a Mask?

A lot of people wear a mask in the real world and in the workplace for many different reasons. Wearing a mask typically, means that when the person is aware someone is watching them, they tend to wear a different colored mask and not act like their normal selves.

However, wearing a masking mask in our example, is close to the above. But, we are specifically speaking about strategically wearing a different color mask to communicate more effectively with employees who not all may be wired the same.

Looking at this from the Insights Discovery® Color Energies’ point of view

For example, let’s say that you have four employees who lead with either, Fiery Red, Cool Blue, Earth Green, or Sunshine Yellow. An effective supervisor or manager who has the ability of “full and total awareness” would have four different ways of approaching, speaking and communicating with all four of these different personality types. This supervisor or manager is wearing a mask, especially if they normally lead with another color while at home and another color when at work. A not so effective supervisor or manager would address all four employees in one way and most likely, NEVER would truly make a connection with these employees or get their best work.

So as you can see, people wear masks for many different reasons in life, good and bad. With respects to trying to communicate effectively in the workplace with today’s highly diverse workforces, wearing a mask to be more effective, and getting your employees’ best effort, is the a mask worth wearing.

Every organization needs a good mix of color energies and a few people who know how to wear a mask properly. If you’d like help in identifying this person (s) on your team, schedule me, Scott Schwefel, as your keynote speaker, I will come to your group and address the difference of personalities in a truthful, fun, and easy to understand way.  Follow me on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter to share my blogs with the color energies you work with!

The Cool Blue Energy – As cool as the other side of the pillow

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Documentation, preparation and just being precise in corporate America has never been more important. Good organizational practices are key in teaching new employees the way your company does things, complying with regulatory bodies such as the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and other Federal governing bodies. Good documentation practices can also keep you and your company out of the courtrooms and with your money still intact. No one knows this better than the Insights Discovery® Color Energy: Cool Blue.
This Is What I Mean
As a case in point, while at the office, have you ever called someone in the office to get an explanation, or to ask a question of any kind of importance, only to have the phone go right to voicemail, but 60 seconds later, you receive a “ping” (a notification of an instant message alert) from that same person? Doesn’t that drive you crazy sometimes? Well, truth be told, this person is strategically trying to either:
1. Avoid speaking with you altogether
2. Really busy and simply was just on another line
3. Was not by their phone
4. Is an Insights Discovery® Color Energy: Cool Blue

What Are The Characteristics Of An Insights Discovery® Color Energy Cool Blue Personality?
Insights Discovery does personality assessment profiles for businesses across the world similar to a Myers-Briggs personality assessment, but more in depth. When a person takes a profile assessment, their results will be sprinkled over the four Insights Discovery® Color Energies with one of the four colors, Fiery Red, Sunshine Yellow, Earth Green and Cool Blue, leading the way.
A person who leads with Cool Blue in the phone vs ping scenarios from up above is most likely choosing to ping over call, not because they don’t want to speak with you (which actually could be one of the reasons as people who lead with this color tend to be introverted), but because they want their reply, or your reply to be documented to cover their tails in the event something down the road goes wrong. They now would have a paper trail to clear their name and/or avoid not being prepared for any given business situation.
The Classic Characteristics Of A Person Leading With Cool Blue
A person in your office who leads with this color will have a hard time not displaying to you and other co-workers that they are very formal and are usually very conservative. These people will also display that:
• They are an introvert
• They are very thorough
• Want to be correct by being prepared
• Are cautious
• Precise
• Deliberate
• Questioning
• Formal
Fears Of The Cool Blue Personality
A co-worker, or even a boss for that matter, leading with Cool Blue is very cool as they will make your team very organized, prepared, accurate and ready for just about whatever business issue that shows its ugly face. However, this person is not superman or superwoman, they too have fears. Some of the fears this person will do everything they can to avoid are:
• Not being prepared for a big meeting
• General embarrassment
• Having to move and process very fast, as sometimes speeding up means more mistakes

When a person leading with a Cool Blue energy is on your team, they will be systematic, and the process will be very important to them. If you would like further help in identifying this person, schedule me, Scott Schwefel, as your keynote speaker. I will come to your group and address the differences in personalities in a truthful, fun, and easy-to-understand way. Follow me on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to share my blogs with the color energies you work with!

Changing The Way You Approach Cool And Detached People

insights-colour-quadrant-cool-blueIt’s important to be self aware for not only your benefit, but also for the benefit of the people you deal with on a day-to-day basis.  It may shock you to learn that when you’re at your best and doing your best work, others may be seeing you at your worst.  Perception is reality, so it’s important to have a grasp on how others perceive you.

In starting off the next four blogs on the Insights Colors, I want to start with Cool Blue energy.  People with a high level of Cool Blue energy, are introverted and have a desire to know and understand the world.  Does this sound like you or someone you know?  If this sounds like you, you like to think before you act and maintain a detached, objective standpoint.  You value independence and intellect.  You prefer written communication in order to maintain clarity and precision, which allows you to analyze the information to your heart’s content. 

Qualities in energies are both positive and negative; it just depends on who perceives them.  Cool Blue is, by definition, detached and takes its time to think.  Imagine how an opposite such as Fiery Red or Sunshine Yellow might perceive Cool Blue if they don’t know the energy’s analytical tendencies; they might view this energy as uncaring and, well, cool!  Meanwhile, Cool Blue cares deeply about the issue at hand and is doing some deep and profound thinking while gathering as much information as it can to make an educated decision.  In this example, Cool Blue’s opposites see Cool Blue at its worst when it is actually at its best.  Eventually Cool Blue will present its findings and will blow away Fiery Red and Sunshine Yellow’s misconceptions, but think about how much time and energy could be saved if the opposite energies understood Cool Blue’s process.  It’s not that Sunshine Yellow and Fiery Red are wrong in their actions, but had Cool Blue been self aware and been able to explain how it processes information, Cool Blue energy may have been given ample time to think and prepare for when the time came to make a decision.  In other words, we can’t control how other energies treat us, but we can help them to understand us so their perception of us isn’t too far off base.

If miscommunications like the example listed above are all too common in your company or organization, learn more by connecting with me, Scott Schwefel, on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.  Share this blog with the people you wish understood you a little better!