I attended the Wilson Learning workshop on Building Relationship Versatility last week, facilitated by Suzy Hillard. A key concept to the workshop is focused on understanding the people you interact with most so that you can better adapt your social style to their needs.
Here are the four social styles they’ve identified:
- Analytical – thorough, focused on high quality, deliberate
- Driver – focus on results & business, direct, clear, concise
- Amiable – values people & team, support org over long-term
- Expressive – enthusiastic, feeds off energy of others
The four types are based upon two axises which identify tendency to Ask vs. Tell and to focus more on the Task or on the People involved. As part of the workshop your co-workers submit a questionnaire which identifies your Social Style. By understanding yourself better and by guessing the social styles of others you work with, you can develop more effective working relationships with them.
I’ve already found it useful and would guess that if you like assessments which identify how you interact with others (e.g. Myers-Briggs, Six Styles of Leadership) then you’ll probably like this one as well.
2 thoughts on “Building Versatile Relationships”
I’ve always thought the social styles framework much more useful than Myers-Briggs in a work environment. Myers-Briggs is helpful for introspection and self-diagnosis. But it’s difficult to teach, difficult to learn and too hard to apply in interactions without extensive prior training. The social styles framework is easier to understand, it’s easier to type others and therefore it’s easier to apply in practical situations.
I know that Myers-Briggs experts can explain how much more rigorous and potentially useful it is, but I find that body of knowledge too difficult to obtain from a brief seminar, which is how the information usually is delivered.
More interesting than either framework, to me, is the Personal Insight Inventory developed by Belle-Isle Insight Consulting: http://www.belle-isle-insight.com/more.html It has similar concepts but is more rigorous than the social styles framework and as easy to apply. Unfortunately, Belle-Isle’s framework hasn’t hit the mainstream like the other two.
Hi Preston – a fellow Wilson Learning facilitator googled Building Relationship Versatility and your blog came up. I enjoyed seeing your entry on Social Styles and also Joon-Soo’s response.
I will email you a document comparing Meyers-Briggs and Social Style. (I wasn’t able to do a link because it’s password protected on our website.) It talks about Meyers-Briggs being linked to ones feelings and Social Style to ones behavior.
It also mentions a framework linked to thinking called Innovation Styles. You might be interested in taking the Innovation Styles assessment which gives perspective on the way you approach problem-solving and idea generation. It was developed by William Miller and can be found on his site: http://innovationstyles.com/isinc/content/personalprofile.aspx It focuses on four styles: Modifying, Visioning, Experimenting and Exploring. Wilson Learning also offers a workshop on this framework that helps teams expand the number of ideas and solutions they come up with when approaching problems and goals.
Speaking as an expressive, it was FUN to see your acknowledgement of Social Styles and I’d love to hear more about how the framework has worked for you!