You know these types who seem to be so great at raining on your parade? Those highly annoying people who are always there to say something critical, judgmental, negative?
My initial reaction in the past has been murderous. I used to take it as a personal affront, an attack, a sudden flood spoiling my carefully laid out strategy and planning. Sounds familiar? You must have encountered these folks – and actually they are not bad people. Annoying maybe but bad?
How about their process? How about the process in general? How does one make a decision to evaluate, to come to a conclusion and make a comment? Do we all think alike? Do we all use the same steps to come to decisions, do we all react the same? And all these differences, these “preferences” as defined by Carl Jung, how do they affect our behaviors? In the case of these “annoyers”, how do such preferences shape these critical, seemingly negative judges who have a tendency to make us feel like they are spoiling our days?
Let’s think this through for a moment. You know some people who use logic to analyze the problem, assess pros and cons; focus on the facts and the principles; are good at analyzing a situation; focus on problems and tasks—not relationships; may not include the impacts on people or people’s emotions in their decision making.
And then you know some other people who use their personal values to understand the situation; focus on the values of the group or organization; are good at understanding people and their viewpoints; concentrate on relationships and harmony; may overlook logical consequences of individual decisions.
These two different types use contrasting processes to make decisions. Neither one is wrong nor is this about being right or wrong. Understanding the different approaches, preferences, styles and ways is more than helpful.
So, next time someone sounds critical and annoys the hell out of you – think twice, three times maybe. After all, being annoyed won’t get you very far.
* The above preference descriptors are excerpted from the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®), an assessment that helps identify differences between normal, healthy people – differences that can be the source of great misunderstanding and miscommunication. Want to know more how this can be used in teams, in your company and/or your personal life? Just ask me.