Do you know what your working style is? Knowing and understanding your personal working style, as well as your colleagues’, can boost your productivity and help you get along better with others.
There are 4 different work styles that people generally fall into. We’ll look at these below. It’s not uncommon to relate to a couple of different work styles so don’t pigeonhole yourself too rigidly into one or the other!
1. The Prioritizer
Prioritizers are logical thinkers who like to have all the information and facts beforehand, so they can prioritize their workload. Once they complete the most important tasks, they will finish the others on the list. They’re always looking for ways to plan their workload more efficiently.
When setting a task for a Prioritizer you need to give them all the the relevant details about the job and, most importantly, give it a deadline. This working style is very much deadline based.
What the Prioritizer needs to work efficiently:
- Clear notes
- Specific checklist items
- All the relevant details and facts
- Brief to-the-point communications.
What the Prioritizer doesn’t like:
- Idle chit-chat
- Wishy-washy discussions
- Blank spaces that require follow up
- No deadlines
2. The Planner
Planners are skilled at assigning tasks and effectively organizing others. They love streamlining workflows and making sure that people are completing their tasks to deadline and following protocol. A successful day for a Planner is one where they get through their to-do list.
Attending meetings that have no set agenda drive Planners crazy. They need concrete action plans that don’t change mid-process.
What the Planner needs to work efficiently:
- Tasks to organize and assign
- A to-do list
What the Planner doesn’t like:
- Meetings with no set agenda
- No concrete action plan
- Change of plans.
3. The Arranger
Arrangers are emotive, intuitive thinkers who like to nut out an issue starting with how everyone feels about it. They’re more focused on the who – as in “who should work on this?” or “who will benefit from this project?” As the ultimate team players, they work best when partnering with others, and will often be the driving force to encourage work to be done.
Arrangers love plans or strategies that have everyone working towards an end goal. They feel successful if everyone’s working in harmony.
What the Arranger needs to work efficiently:
- Being able to voice an opinion
- Asking questions
- A supportive environment
- Plans that have an end goal.
What the Arranger doesn’t like:
- Too much focus on data or facts
- No personal interaction.
4. The Visualizer
Visualizers look at the big picture. Like Arrangers they’re also intuitive but they’re more idea-oriented. They are the ones who ask ‘can we do it a better way?’ or ‘what is the goal of this project?’. Although they’re too much into detail they do like to have a lot of projects on the go at once and thrive under pressure.
Having a Visualizer on the team can be inspiring but expect long emails outlining their ideas and concepts in detail. If you have outdated policies or systems the Visualizer will challenge them.
What the Visualizer needs to work efficiently:
- Information displayed visually
- An in depth understanding of their work
- Working on a number of tasks
- Creative problem-solving.
What the Visualizer doesn’t like:
- The status quo.
Flexing in the workplace
Do you identify with any of these 4 styles? If any one in particular resonates with you then that’s likely to be a natural fit for you.
Now you’ve recognized your own tendencies, think about where your colleagues might fit in. Some working styles, like the Prioritizer and the Visualizer are direct opposites, which can cause conflict. But appreciating the positive qualities of an opposing work style can help you be more flexible and tolerant of others.
Why is this important?
A team that has a variety of working styles is more cohesive, creates a better output and encourages people to do their best work. Plus variety is the spice of life and we can learn a lot from people who don’t work exactly like we do!