The Benefits of Personality Assessments

I am typically a behind-the-scenes kind of girl. Pretty stereotypical of an editor type. I prefer to interview and photograph those with the story, not be at the center of the story.

And while I can stand in front of a large audience when I have something to say, it also makes me feel anxious and vulnerable.

I don’t prefer the spotlight and I would rather listen to you than talk about myself.

Except when it comes to personality assessments.

If you ask me what makes me uniquely me, I’m quick to offer an answer. Not because I’m impressed with myself, but because I strongly believe that being vulnerable with who I am is a gateway to building healthy, meaningful relationships.

I believe the same is true about you and the teams you lead. The more we understand ourselves and strive to understand each other, the stronger bridges we build to connecting with those who are different than us.

So, what about me?

I’m people-structured, and according to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, I’m an ENFJ (just barely an E. If in doubt, see above).

By DISC Profile standards, I’m an SC combination.

Prefer Strength Finders? My top five are relator, strategic, maximizer, responsibility, and discipline.

I’m also the color blue on the True Colors Personality Test, and I strive to be playful, engaging, affectionate, loyal, and courageous, the qualities of a counterphobic Enneagram six.

These assessments don’t determine my worth or tell me how to act. They simply describe who I already am. And with that clarity, I can better engage my inner self and the world around me.

But it’s not all about me.

Armed with the same information about my team, I seek to make sure that their roles line up with how they’re instinctively wired. For example, our best sales people are often “I’s” on the DISC, as well as the color orange. Great project managers are usually task-oriented and have some gold in their profile or show up as a “C” on the DISC profile.

The DISC and True Colors Personality Test do a great job of helping people know where they best fit. Does a person’s role fit their natural bent?

The Strength Finder and Enneagram tools are more advanced and lend in-depth information into how people will do their job and what motivates them.

The possibilities are endless, yet the outcome is clear. The more you know, and help your employees explore, the more engaged and productive team you’ll have.

10 Guiding Principles for Working Together

I don’t mind saying it. Working for COMO magazine and Columbia Marketing Group is pretty great. The community has tended to agree in the past by awarding us the 2017 Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year and the 2017 Debin Benish Outstanding Businesswoman of the Year.

But it’s not like it just magically shows up every morning like fairy dust delivered by flying llamas with magical carafes of coffee. It takes hard work and consistent commitment by all parties to a unified vision. Here is the approach we use to ensure we protect the most important part of our company … our culture.

The Business Times Company culture involves three core areas:

  • Care for the cause.
  • Care for our community.
  • Care for ourselves.

Individually, and as a group, we commit to:

Care for the Cause.

  1. Manage by objective. Our goal is to deliver a high-quality product, on time, without pissing off our co-workers! We actively respect the product, the process, and the people, and take responsibility for delivering on what we promise.
  2. Do whatever it takes. We are not bound by roles or job descriptions. We know it takes us all, chipping in, to meet our objectives. Some weeks that means going the extra mile.
  3. Prioritize the mission. We understand that our company mission stems from our love for Mid-Missouri, small business, and healthy team dynamics. For the sake of that mission, we collaborate always, yet respect clear decisions by the person responsible.

Care for our Community.

  1. Acknowledge problems early. We open and honestly embrace conflict before it becomes toxic. We share concerns when they are a 10% problem, before they become a 70% problem. We acknowledge the difference between a problem to solve and a tension to manage.
  2. Share feelings appropriately. We agree to give the benefit of the doubt and work to understand where the other person is coming from. We process our emotions before venting, qualify conflict, and respectfully give constructive feedback.
  3. Refrain from gossip. We commit to talk about a problem with someone who can solve it. We understand that gossip is a fireable offense.
  4. Embrace both sides of the coin. We strive to know the whole person (personality, skills, and strengths), and we understand that we can’t eliminate the qualities we dislike without damaging the ones we love.
  5. Communicate with perspective. When problem solving, we let our co-workers know if we’re talking about a $10, $500, $100,000 or $1 million-dollar issue.

Care for Ourselves.

  1. Work and play hard. We give 110% to the job during office hours, but also prioritize rest, down time, self-care, and self-awareness. We take advantage of the time given by the company to divert daily, withdraw weekly, and abandon annually.
  2. Understand emotions. We work to stay emotionally healthy and keep our emotional cups from overflowing. We strive to bring our full and best selves to our jobs (and lives) daily.

A Holiday Gift Guide for the Creatives in Your Life

Are you a Sadie, Cassidy, or Jordan? Which one of our designers’ suggestions could you gift to the creatives in YOUR company?

Sadie’s Picks!

  1. Ampersand Ring: I’m obsessed with ampersands and love minimalist jewelry. (If you are a fan too, follow theampersandstorm on Instagram.)

     
  2. Pantone Mug: I just think Pantone swatches are so cool. (Yes, this is a “tea” cup, but it holds more than your standard coffee mug, sooo….)
     
  3. NEVER Tote Bag by Wasted Rita: Because I’m obsessed with typefaces. And I love bags.
     
  4. A magazine subscription to The Magnolia Journal: Designers can always use more magazine subscriptions (of their choosing, not just any ole mag). I love watching “Fixer Upper” and Chip and Joanna. I think their publication is just so beautiful, and I always feel comforted and relaxed while looking through it.
     
  5. Letterpress Cookie Cutters: Did I mention I love typefaces?
     

Cassidy’s Picks!

  1. A subscription to “Tapas”: “Tapas” covers are amazing. I’m dying to know what is inside. Bonus points for supporting print media.
     
  2. Gradient Puzzle: This is how I hygge.
     
  3. Locally made cookies: Check out the Berlin Bazaar Winter Market and get allll of Shelly La Fata’s Amaretti cookies. I love supporting local creators.
     
  4. Stocking stuffer affirmations: This guy was a riot at our design conference last year.
     
  5. Bougie oyster accessories: I’m obsessed with “Garden & Gun” magazine’s field shop. And oysters.
     

Jordan’s Picks!

  1. BOOKS! So many books, so little time! It can be hard to know where to start, but these are my personal picks for topics I want to cover in the new year: creative team management, practical day-to-day business stuff, and some classic inspiration from industry legends. (Bonus points if you pick them up from a local bookstore or directly from the author’s website.)
     
  1. La Croix planter: Handmade ceramics + La Croix = a perfect desk accessory. #teamcoconut (p.s. These come complete with an air plant, perfect for a lazy – uh, I mean, busy – designer.)
     
  2. Enamel pins: Pins are an easy way to jazz up my daily uniform of black skinny jeans and striped t-shirts.
     
  1. Pocket Art Director: It’s funny because it’s true.
     
  2. Anything and everything from Parks Project: Some of the best memories of my life have taken place in National Parks. I got married in Joshua Tree, vacationed in Yosemite, and moved my life across the country, stopping in many along the way. Rather than donating a percentage of the profit, Parks Project partners with conservancies to fund their most immediate and needed projects. So, the parks get some much needed TLC, and you get a beautifully designed good in return. That’s what I like to call a win-win situation.