A diverse workforce can make for a healthy company.  And while each person you work with is different, we’ve also got more in common than people usually think.

In fact, a little understanding of some typical traits can help you to encourage your team to work better together.  And it can help you to play to your own strengths.

Do you have any of these types in your workplace?

The Fixer

Pragmatic, realistic and impartial, the Fixer has neither the time nor the inclination to start pointing fingers when things go wrong.

They’re more interested in solutions and results: finding the most direct and mutually beneficial route towards a resolution, and offering suggestions to prevent repeat disasters.

If you have one of these on your team, they’re probably a keeper – so make sure you encourage their problem-solving skills.

The Dinosaur

Some people aren’t comfortable adapting.  Whether they’re scared of Skype or they just won’t accept new ideas, their resistance to change is often what’s holding them back. The trouble comes when they begin holding others back, too.

It’s not a case of age, and it’s not just about technology.

New procedures, new policies and new management regimes can all grind to a halt when someone isn’t willing to adapt.  The solution is to retrain and coach them: help them to understand how newer ways of working make things easier for the whole team (including Dinosaurs).

The Mountaineer

Ambition is an admirable trait in any worker.  But if it’s to really benefit the business, it needs to be carefully directed.

For better or worse, some employees are obsessed with progression – so if you don’t want them treading on their colleagues’ heads as they ascend to the top, you’ll need to find ways to channel that drive and ambition into goals that help the business.

Fortunately, the majority of ladder-climbers know that they need to be in full support of their employer’s goals, and they know they won’t get far without motivating and guiding those around them. This knowledge can make them valuable workers to have on your side.

The Rebel

Outspoken, moralistic and contrary, the Rebel is also usually the first to complain. They’re often found at work behind the scenes, passively resisting undesirable change, or spreading their resentment to other members of the team.

While you’d never want a team that’s afraid to question its leaders, you don’t want a team that’s constantly looking for things to complain about, either.  That could be a symptom of deeper problems.

So if you think you have an unreasonable Rebel in your workplace, it might be time to have a casual chat to get to the root of any friction. You could end up fixing a problem that other team members simply haven’t brought up.

The Calculator

Guided by numbers and data – and often, clearly excited by them – the Calculator lives by statistics and financial documents, and their deeply analytic skills can make the difference between profitable growth and stagnation.

What’s important is their initiative.

While many employees are terrified of a cash-flow forecast, Calculators are busy analysing customer habits and finding deals on electricity prices for your business.  Just remember: arithmophiles aren’t too common, and that makes them worth holding on to.

Have you managed to re-train a Dinosaur or make peace with a Rebel?  Have we missed out any common employee types?  Tell us your story below.

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