Relying on functional matches in high performing teams doesn’t ensure success.
New research from Hogan Assessment Systems (specialists in personality profiling) suggest that psychological roles and the matching of those roles are critical to success. Within the variety of functional and psychological roles there is “space” for individuals to contribute and play their natural role. Diversity is the key to having all the positions on the field covered.
These people tend to focus on task execution, knowing how to get things done, driving for goals and milestones and getting the business done. They thrive on managing others and taking the lead within the team. Strong individuals in this role need to beware of pushing too hard, overly focusing on task at expense of people and at the intolerance of non-delivery.
People who have a strong care for others can fulfil the Relationship Role within the team. They harmonise and mediate the group well with strong understanding and empathy for other team members, customers and external stakeholders. These individuals are important as they can “knit” the team together through relationships. Individuals who have strong relationship skills may need to be aware of over-affiliating with others, seeing their point of view too much and having difficulty managing their performance & having “tough conversations”.
Spotting problems, generating ideas, understanding how things works, and predicting trends is an important role within a team. The ability to develop the strategy can best be served by individuals who fit the Innovation Role. Individuals who have a strengths in this role may become bored with the status quo, be restless in repetitive and conservative environments and may be challenged at times to ensure their ideas are practical.
The role of process, detail, planning and structure is important within team. Individuals who are comfortable with planning, structure, organising, and systems approaches can thrive in the Process Role. Over acting these strengths can limit the team by individuals be too rigid, uncomfortable with chaos & complexity and are change resistant.
Team members who are in the Pragmatist Role are challengers, independent, practical and somewhat hard headed. These individuals are not easily swayed and have a very good understanding about what works. Challenges for individuals in this role include being disconnected with the aesthetic elements of projects, being very directional and focused in the leadership style and can be resistant to change and new ideas.
The balancing of psychological roles limits gaps within the performance and “gelling” of the team. Maximising the high performing team requires variety in function and personality.
(Hogan has a newly developed Team Report which identifies the above roles within teams)