No organization can achieve success, whether it is a retail giant, a corporation, or even a small startup if the relationships between the key stakeholders within the sphere are strained.

To ensure the possibility of procuring the best kind of results from any venture, you need to nurture, build, and sustain relationships.

But in the modern day workplace, this task is becoming increasingly complicated as people are no longer responding to the conventional ‘working’ mechanisms.

Hierarchies and power distance are tools that might have been used by managers in the past to remit the best performance out of employees. However, this form of coercion may not work in the dynamic workplace models we have today.

And as in all similar scenarios, a different requirement requires a change in mindset, and charting an alternative way of accomplishing things.

People with different and diverse personalities have always existed in workplaces. But in the current scenario, you cannot structure ‘characters’ according to conventional standards that were used in the past.

Gone are the days when your employee was either an extrovert or an introvert, or they were either a decision maker or a great follower. You cannot put people into boxes.

So to be a good manager and an effective leader, you need to know how to manage different personalities. You might not have the ease of ticking boxes to adjudge personality types like your predecessors did, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done.

Many workplaces like Google, Facebook, and other similar tech firms have transformed the way they attain, manage, and retain talent.

Here are four great lessons on how to manage different personalities:

1. Learn to Understand Your Own Biases and Address Them

Most managers don’t realize that they hold prejudices against a specific group of people based on either gender, race, skin color, or other demographisc. Our biases often tend to make our behavior vulnerable to predispositions that frequently affect the way we communicate with others.

This prejudice or bias is the single most problematic barrier to successfully managing a place with different personalities.

Facebook addressed this problem precisely by administering an unconscious bias training course which dissects the very roots of the problem down to the bare minimum, allowing people to become much more adept at handling different people at the workplace.

Neutral ground is the best way to start if you want to learn and understand the functioning of each individual, allowing you to become a more effective leader along the way.

2. Diffuse Friction and Foster Engagement

Just 600 engineers were required by Apple to initiate, test, and successfully launch the iOS 10 system in two years.

Now compare that with Microsoft, whose 10,000 engineers could not find success with introducing a product like Vista, despite working on it for nearly half a decade.

Of course, many different personalities existed in both these groups ranging from introverts to extroverts and leaders to followers. Probably even more personality differential could have been revealed if a study was conducted in this regard.

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But the success rate of both those teams was not tied to tackling personalities, but a ‘collective character’ of the team.

Apple brought all of their top talents on board as they knew the importance of that project. But despite all of the star talent, no one was rewarded on an individual basis. Apple would only reward teams.

On the other hand, Microsoft did not have a lot of star players, and they reviewed people on individual performance.

When there are a lot of players working towards a common goal, the chances of success are higher if they find common ground and the team is treated as a group instead of as individuals.

Apple knew the importance of devolving individuals and molding them into a single entity by binding them towards a single goal. This can lead to more workplace success rather than making people just responsible for their own actions.

Cooperation among team members allows people with diverse personalities to come together and work as one unit.

3. Empathize and Listen

Empathy is probably the most important trait a manager can have. Not only can compassion help you understand people in a better light, but it also allows you to devise solutions and approaches that fit motivational and emotional parameters of your team members.

For example, if you have a worker who loses their temper when someone else is taking charge. Then that person might have some sort of jealousy brewing within them. Also, that person might be the one who wants to take charge themselves.

Instead of confronting them on the matter, you can allow yourself to understand their point of view and ensure that their emotions are utilized in a better way by making them take on something more challenging.

If you take the empathetic approach, the other person probably won’t let you down because you are now using their strengths. This approach ultimately can help your organization’s performance rise.

4. Resolving Conflicts

Remember, resolving personality conflicts is more about how you learn to harness these energies and transform them into something more positive.

This way, you can build a very active and productive team of people without going through as much fuss.

The crux of effective leadership lies not in the way you manage differently, but in the way you ‘manage’ different individuals coherently. The 21st-century workplace is complicated and you need to go down to the wire if you need tangible results.

Find out the unique elements of each person, and use them to your advantage to avoid finding yourself in the midst of trouble.

How Can You Lead With Different Personalities in Your Team?

If you have ideas that you feel like sharing that might be helpful to readers, share them in the comments section below. Thanks!

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Rachael Everly
Rachael Everly is an undergraduate student who loves to write on topics related to business, finance and technology.