Exercise #5 - Supplementing Your Personality

This exercise will promote growth in areas outside the typical and perceptual patterns of your personality. This is an exercise in walking in someone else's shoes.

Anais Nin observed, "We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." If a person is t obe a competent communicator it is imperative that the person develop the ability to be "multi-tasking" in their perceptions and understanding. For people whose personalities are balanced (Primary score is labeled as Low) this is usually easy because this is built in to their personality. For others, this is a challenge.


Examine the seven "aspects of your personal dynamics" found listed under the primary descriptor in your IOP Inventory Results (Change, Authority, Initiative,...). Read the sections in the Handout on pages 9, 10, and 11. Notice that the Worker and Helper communication patterns, both verbal and non verbal have a lot in common. So do the Leader and Researcher.

If your primary descriptor is a Worker or Helper, examine closely the Leader and Researcher communication lists. If your primary descriptor is a Leader or Researcher, examine the Worker and Helper lists. Identify specific behavior on these lists (different form yours) and list the advantages these verbal and non verbal methods could have for a person. Identify areas within your organization to practice specific skills of one or more of these communication methods. Implement.

Verbal or Non Verbal Behavior Your Specific Behavior List Advantages of this Behavior Areas of Application
Compliment in a group setting Give positive feedback regularly to the people in my department and do this for groups of people. This will open up avenues for communications with this group. It could bring me closer to the group. It will make me more aware of everyday events to try and find compliments. At the beginning of the morning shift. During the weekly meeting. When I meet with Unit Teams. When I stop by the break room. When I walk through the job site.


Identify others (preferably in your organization) that regularly use the skills you are trying to practice. Observe them very closely in how they communicate. Try to find a way to incorporate their behavior to fit and expand your communication skills. Ask for coaching or feedback. Practice.

Communication Skill - Verbal or Non Verbal Model (other person) Identified area of practice Assessment of Implementation
Ask "How's your family?" or "What do you think of the new computers?" Jane Smith in Shipping When I arrive early to Unit meetings I would have the time to take a casual and interested approach to an employee. Felt kind of uncomfortable after the first couple of minutes, but gave M. my full attention when he was talking. Will ask tomorrow how his son did in his game last night.

Note: It is often easier for the Leader or Researcher types to include Worker or Helper communication patterns than for Worker or Helper types to incorporate Leader or Researcher patterns.