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Traitify Big Five Communication Style Guide

Introduction

This is the communication guide for the Traitify Big Five personality questionnaire. The questionnaire is designed to measure a candidate's personality, across five dimensions, in an everyday work context.

The five dimensions, the 'Big Five', are Openness (to new experiences), Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness and Emotional Stability.

These dimensions of personality have been found to have a direct and significant impact on behavior. For example, Openness is essentially about ideas and problem solving. It focuses on how people think about problems, and particularly, how receptive they are to new types of information. All of these factors contribute to the way they make decisions and, therefore, to their work style.

In a business or organizational context the five dimensions map directly onto core work competencies. These are Solving Problems (O), Delivering Results (C), Engaging with People (E), Influencing People (A) and Managing Pressure (ES).

The Traitify Big Five questionnaire identifies where someone scores on each of these five dimensions. However it's important to realize that the results from the questionnaire describe general tendencies and what is likely to characterize someone’s behaviors at work, based on their own individual personality.

In this way the results give an indication of typical behavior, not what someone will do on every occasion. After all, no one always behaves in just one manner, but everyone’s personalities contribute to stable patterns of behavior, and this includes communication style.

About this Guide

Your unique pattern of personality influences the way in which you communicate with other people. This guide provides quick tips on how you can make your conversations more effective. It provides questions you can ask yourself, clues about how other people might perceive you, and ways of optimizing the impact of what you say.

The communication tips are based on your specific Big Five profile. That’s the combination of scores you obtained on the five dimensions. To make things easier Traitify has labeled all the different ways in which the results can be combined and given them a descriptive name, such as Mentor or Presenter. This is your Big Five "type". You will find the name given to your type on your Big Five results page.

Let’s take Mentor as an example. If you look at the tips they suggest you might want to check that you say what you mean in a clear and obvious way, and that you are careful to make people feel you are interested in their thoughts and ideas. This can be optimized by asking how you can help others first, or by showing a genuine interest in their welfare and how they are doing.

One More Thing

People often find ‘Emotional Stability’ (ES) to be a tricky concept. However, remember we are only looking at personality in a work context. Simply put it’s about ‘emotionality’ or how you think and feel about pressure at work. In this respect we all react differently, and for example being unmoved by high levels of pressure (higher ES) is not necessarily a constructive reaction. The point is that higher or lower ES is neither ‘good’ nor ‘bad’: it all depends on the work context.

Big Five Types

Ally

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound too spontaneous and vague when I speak?
  2. Do I sound flexible and adaptable?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others view me as someone they might take advantage of?
  2. Do others perceive me as a team player?

Optimize:

  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Make sure you stay engaged, even if you feel bored
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Backer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound confident and relaxed in front of a group?
  2. Do I make my point clearly, although I am short and to the point?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem like a “take charge” kind of person?
  2. Do I seem cold and aloof?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you both have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Talk about something, using an example

Booster

How you interact with others:

  1. In my interactions with others, am I seen as spontaneous and flexible?
  2. Do others see me as optimistic and having high energy or as unpredictable and sometimes critical?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Am I seen as someone who will stimulate discussion and involve others or as someone who can be uncomfortable around others?

Optimize:

  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Talk about something using a specific example to illustrate it
  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present

Campaigner

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound confident in my ideas but also flexible?
  2. Do I seem like I enjoy being in the limelight?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem open to others’ opinions?
  2. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?

Optimize:

  • Ask others for their ideas and listen
  • Refocus yourself on one or two tasks
  • Identify a common goal that you both have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Catalyst

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound tentative and easily side-tracked when presenting my opinion?
  2. Do I sound fairly critical no matter what I’m talking about?

How others perceive you:

  1. Am I perceived as someone who sees the glass as half empty rather than half full?
  2. Am I perceived as someone who is more likely to identify problems than solutions?

Optimize:

  • Identify a common goal that you both have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Ask how another person is doing and look interested
  • Talk about something using an example

Champion

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I describe solutions, not problems?
  2. Do I sound confident in myself?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m a good listener?
  2. Do other people think I am a “team player”?

Optimize:

  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Talk about something using an example
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious, and maintain eye contact

Cohort

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound too spontaneous and vague when I speak?
  2. Do I sound flexible and adaptable?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others view me as someone they might take advantage of?
  2. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?

Optimize:

  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Make sure you stay engaged, even if you feel bored
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Contemplator

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I seem like someone who can bring people with different opinions and styles together on a project?
  2. Do I seem like someone who would rather be in the wings and not in the limelight?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Do others view me as someone they could take advantage of?

Optimize:

  • Assert yourself and maintain eye contact so you aren’t taken advantage of
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Value relationships and know that being a people person can be your strength

Defender

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly?
  2. Do I sound enthusiastic and respectful?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m interested in their ideas?
  2. Do other people think I want to help them?

Optimize:

  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present
  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Identify a strength of another person to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Developer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly, directly and concisely?
  2. Do I sound confident and optimistic about reaching the goal of any project?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others see me as a workaholic who will sacrifice too much to accomplish a work goal?
  2. Do others see me as dedicated to my co-workers and staff or as unpredictable around others and sometimes uncomfortable?

Optimize:

  • Allow other workers who have a creative streak that is bigger than yours the freedom to approach things in a different way, so long as they get the job done
  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present
  • Value relationships and know that being a people person can be your strength

Dreamer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound confident in what I’m saying?
  2. Do I say what I mean clearly?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Do others interpret my independence as indifference?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Energizer

How you interact with others:

  1. In my interactions with others, am I seen as spontaneous and flexible?
  2. Do others see me as enthusiastic and having high energy?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Am I seen as someone who will stimulate discussion and involve others?

Optimize:

  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Talk about something using a specific example to illustrate it
  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present

Explorer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound optimistic in my ideas but also flexible?
  2. Do I seem like I enjoy being in the limelight?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem more aware of problems than solutions?
  2. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?

Optimize:

  • Ask others, for their ideas, maintain eye contact and listen
  • Refocus yourself on one or two tasks
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Facilitator

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound dedicated to accomplishing the work goal?
  2. Do I sound confident speaking to a group of people?

How others perceive you:

  1. Am I perceived as a workaholic by other people?
  2. Am I perceived as someone who prefers to do their own thing?

Optimize:

  • Identify a common goal that you and another person have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Ask a coworker about their work and listen to their response
  • Start a discussion with a coworker using real life anecdotes

Gamesman

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound tentative and easily side-tracked when presenting my opinion?
  2. Do I sound fairly pessimistic no matter what I’m talking about?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Am I perceived as someone who is more likely to identify problems than solutions?

Optimize:

  • Try to maintain eye contact when speaking with others
  • Identify a work goal and choose a coworker you might work on it with
  • Talk about something using an example

Guide

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound dedicated to accomplishing the work goal?
  2. Do I sound confident speaking to a group of people?

How others perceive you:

  1. Am I perceived as a workaholic by other people?
  2. Am I perceived as someone who prefers to do their own thing?

Optimize:

  • Identify a common goal that you and another person have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Ask a coworker about their work and listen to their response
  • Start a discussion with a coworker using real life anecdotes

Harmonizer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly and concisely?
  2. Do I sound confident about reaching the goal of any project?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others see me as a workaholic who will sacrifice too much to accomplish a work goal?
  2. Do others see me as dedicated to my co-workers and staff?

Optimize:

  • Allow other workers who have a creative streak that is bigger than yours the freedom to approach things in a different way, so long as they get the job done
  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present
  • Value relationships and know that being a people person is your strength

Investigator

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I clearly communicate our common goal?
  2. Do I sound confident in myself?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I sound committed to getting the job done?
  2. Do others think I am cold and aloof?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Listener

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I explain my ideas enough?
  2. Do I sound confident in myself?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m a good listener?
  2. Do other people think I am a “team player”?

Optimize:

  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Talk about something using an example
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Mediator

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I seem like someone who can bring people with different opinions and styles together on a project?
  2. Do I seem like someone who would rather be in the wings and not in the limelight?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others view me as someone who is easy to get along with?
  2. Do others view me as someone they could take advantage of?

Optimize:

  • Assert yourself so you aren’t taken advantage of
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Value relationships and know that being a people person is your strength

Mentor

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly?
  2. Do I sound enthusiastic and respectful?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m interested in their ideas?
  2. Do other people think I want to help them?

Optimize:

  • Ask how you can help others first
  • Ask how they are doing and look interested
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Organizer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I make my point clearly enough when I speak?
  2. Do I sound upbeat when I describe a problem?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem too critical to other people?
  2. Do others think I’m argumentative?

Optimize:

  • Rephrase a criticism you want to make into a suggested solution
  • Instead of arguing with someone, find one thing they are saying that you can agree with and tell them that
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Presenter

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly?
  2. Do I sound enthusiastic and optimistic?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m interested in their ideas?
  2. Do other people think I want to help them?

Optimize:

  • Ask how you can help others first
  • Ask how they are doing, look interested and maintain eye contact
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Producer

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I clearly communicate our common goal?
  2. Do I sound optimistic and confident in myself?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I sound committed to finding a solution to problems?
  2. Do others think I am cold and aloof?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing, maintain eye contact, and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Promoter

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I make my point clearly enough when I speak?
  2. Do I sound optimistic when I describe a problem?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem too critical to other people?
  2. Do others think I’m argumentative?

Optimize:

  • Rephrase a criticism you want to make into a suggested solution
  • Instead of arguing with someone, find one thing they are saying that you can agree with and tell them that
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

Protector

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I say what I mean clearly?
  2. Do I sound optimistic and respectful?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do other people think I’m interested in their ideas?
  2. Do other people think I want to help them?

Optimize:

  • Allow other workers to use more colorful and entertaining ways of presenting information, even though you prefer to stick to the facts when you present
  • Assert your ideas, even if it means occasionally interrupting someone else
  • Identify a strength of another person to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Referee

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound committed to the work goal?
  2. Do I sound confident about my work strategy?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think I am a workaholic?
  2. Do others think I am cold but committed?

Optimize:

  • Ask others what they think and listen
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious
  • Identify how you both are committed to the team and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to demonstrate that

Self-Promoter

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound optimistic and relaxed in front of a group?
  2. Do I make my point clearly, even if I am short and to the point?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do I seem like a “take charge” kind of person?
  2. Do I seem cold and aloof?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Talk about something using an example

Specialist

How you interact with others:

  1. How can I be most efficient in a meeting with other people, without appearing pessimistic and obsessed with problems?
  2. Am I explaining myself enough to keep others engaged?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others view me as a person of few words, who is critical and argumentative?
  2. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?

Optimize:

  • Maintain eye contact and ask others what they think and listen
  • Do get discussions going using real life examples
  • Look interested even if you are bored

Technician

How you interact with others:

  1. How can I be most efficient in a meeting with other people?
  2. Am I explaining myself enough to keep others engaged?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others view me as a person of few words?
  2. Do others think I am short but to the point?

Optimize:

  • Do maintain some eye contact
  • Do get discussions going using real life examples
  • Look interested even if you are bored

Thinker

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound confident and optimistic about what I’m saying?
  2. Do I say what I mean clearly?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think of me as someone who can get the job done?
  2. Do others interpret my independence as self-reliance or as indifference?

Optimize:

  • Ask how others are doing and look interested
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious

Upholder

How you interact with others:

  1. Do I sound committed to the work goal?
  2. Do I sound confident about finding solutions to problems?

How others perceive you:

  1. Do others think I am a workaholic?
  2. Do others think I am cold but committed?

Optimize:

  • Ask others what they think and listen
  • Identify a strength of theirs to compliment, even if it isn’t obvious
  • Identify a common goal that you and others have and discuss something you both (or the team) can do to reach it

 

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