Temperament at Work: Understanding Yourself and Others

Join best-selling authors and consultants Scott Blanchard and Madeleine Homan-Blanchard for a complimentary webinar and online chat beginning today at 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time (12:00 noon Eastern).

Scott and Madeleine will be exploring personality and its impact on work relationships  in a special presentation on Temperament at Work: Understanding Yourself and Others. The webinar is free and seats are still available if you would like to join over 800 people expected to participate.

Immediately after the webinar, Scott and Madeleine will be answering follow-up questions here at LeaderChat for about 30 minutes.  To participate in the follow-up discussion, use these simple instructions.

Instructions for Participating in the Online Chat

  • Click on the LEAVE A COMMENT link above
  • Type in your question

It’s as easy as that!  Scott and Madeleine will answer as many questions as possible in the order they are received.  Be sure to press F5 to refresh your screen occasionally to see the latest responses.

We hope you can join us later today for this special complimentary event courtesy of Cisco WebEx and The Ken Blanchard Companies.  Click here for more information on participating.

54 thoughts on “Temperament at Work: Understanding Yourself and Others

  1. I’m facing problems wiith my boss as he doesn’t treat us, the team, in a good way and he’s always trying to find ways to get us angry and pissed off. In my case I try always to keep myself calm but try to let things go till I reached a level that I can’t control myself and exploded shouting at him. In short he’s not respectful as he looks down to others as he’s the one and he doesn’t share things that could improve the work related stuff.


    • sounds like you are experiencing frustration at work. Pleanty of BLM coming from your boss. any situation with your boss must be handled carefully.

      Understanding how your boss is triggering reactions in you in a good way to start. you can only really manage yourself. if you are able to manage your emotion and not react, the situation has a chance of improving.

      temperament can help you manage your self first. hoepfully, if you can manage yourself well it iwll have a positive infleunce on your boss.

  2. Any suggestions of quizzes to determine your type, and recommendations on how to manage people of same/shadow/different types to yourself

    • I hate to recommend that you buy a book, but the What Makes You Tick book will really help you with this!

    • Also, keep you eye on BLanchard Certified, we may be offering a FREE temperament assesment in the future! We will definitely be offering that to attendees at ASTD this year!

  3. Based on the presentation today, this is very similar and aligns very closely with the “4 Lenses” by Nathan Byrce. Are you familar with “4 Lenses”?

    • We are not familiar with the 4 lenses, but these ideas are not remotely new – it actually started with Hippocrates and 4 humors. We will look into it! Thanks.

  4. The only experience I’ve ever had is with Predictive Index (P.I.) and I’m curious about how that might cross-reference into temperament typing. Do any of the panelists have experience with this method?

    • Heather – have worked with Predictive Index, DISC, MBTI, Kersey, and Blanchard’s specific situational training. I would be glad to discuss my experiences with them if you want to exchange ideas. (951) 285-7386.

      • Thanks for your response, Tanya! I appreciate the opportunity to share thoughts. When might be a good time to call for a chat?

      • Tanya, I would be interested in that as well… In particular the advantages and disadvantages of the different tools.

        • If I could just add one tidbit to my understanding about PI – the most important thing to remember is that it’s not a test and when describing it to others, emphasizing that there is no positive or negative behaviours because there are productive attributes to every behaviour, no matter how extreme.

        • Feel free to contact me and we can schedule some time to chat. I’m also on linkedin for access. I am always interested in hearing other’s experiences and use them as opportunities for learning…..

    • Predicitve Index is a behavior assessment based on a defined work context. Tools like this can be very effective compliments to temperamant although they are fundamentally different constucts.

      people develop patterns of beahvior that are infleunced by one’s self (temperament, value, experiences, etc.) as well the environment. each work environement demands different behavior from people. at the end of the day, a cultures behavioral expectations of its members either causes people to feel at ease, in some balance of ease and tension or in alarm. your temeprament can be a big cause of either extreme

      • Thanks for your feedback, Scott! I guess the biggest problem I run into when trying to utilize PI in preparation for communication with my staff is trying to determine the best way to share the information that I have to give – finding an effective way to distribute constructive criticism. I was thinking that temperament might be a bridge I could use to fill in the gap with my understanding of PI. What are your thoughts on that?

  5. For someone who identifies with a dominant air, but is on the front line, is there any advise for how to best work w/ those in position power, or those on a team?

    ie: Someone who tends to be intelligent, visionary, experienced, but aren’t in a position to make decisions like a CEO/executive. Especially when those in a position power don’t respect or understand the front lines experience, or knowledge around change and new ideas. Perhaps partly even because in the past they were seen as condescending, un-emotional, and un-realstic by those leaders (or others on a team).

    • It can be a challenge to be young air – especially if you have a high IQ and mostly feel like you are surrounded by idiots. The best thing you can do is develop your empathy and compassion for others who take longer to catch on, try to see the world through their eyes and work HARD on your communication skills and patience. Check into Daniel Goleman’s work on Emotional Intelligence and get as smart about people as you are about other stuff, and you will go far. High IQ alone will only get you so far, whereas high IQ PLUS communication skills and emotional intelligence is an unbeatable combo. Good luck!

      • Wow, yes! Thank you! I might have to print this out and stick it somewhere where I will see it every day. Nobody is DYING by training, but they sure are LIVING better lives. You all are the best.

      • I love my job. But I run into obstacles when I try to be forward thinking or seek improvements around processes and how we work. Teammates/leaders don’t understand, or I’m not being heard because of my position or age, or I’m not sure what exactly. It was also probably my communication skills and my lack of emotion. But I also think there has been disconnectedness with leaders, and those on the front line like myself. As a result, I’ve probably burned a lot of bridges.

        • I understand what you are going through. I just asked if you liked your job because it sounds like you are at a “head bangers ball.”
          Maybe those above are intimidated – they didn’t think of it….You sound very intelligent….maybe there’s a better company for you that will respect you. You either have to deal with it, ignore it, or leave it.

          • So true. Thank you Susan. You aren’t the first person to say that maybe others have been intimated. There is probably some reality to that. I appreciate the advise too. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t looking for another company. I don’t really want to leave, but I may have to do it for my sanity. It might be good to a have fresh clean start with my new found knowledge around emotional intelligence :D. In the mean time, I’ve been trying to deal with it, while still trying to achieve the best possible results from my work. It’s very difficult though.

  6. I categorized myself as “Earth” as my dominent and “Fire” as my shadow, however, I see certain traits in “Fire” that often draws me to that personality trait such as: humor, creativity.
    Can you tell me what that could mean?

    Also, I see traits that I have in all of the personality traits which would probably make me harmonious, sensitive, friendly, etc… so do you think “Water” may be my more dominent personality?

    • Most of us like humor and creativity, it is irresponsibility and recklessness that is the turn off…just because something is your shadow doesnt mean you are allergic to all aspects, just the dark side of that temperament? Make sense?
      Also, just because you are generally a good egg and care about people does not make Water your dominant. The easiest way to determine your dominant is establish core need? Is it duty, responsibilty and social belonging = earth or is it to be cause driven and always finding meaning = water. Make sense?

    • I’m curious to know if any of the panel members are familiary with the “4 Lenses: Temperament Discovery” assessment instrument?

    • David – shame on me but I was a bit late in entering the webinar. I’m still clarifying the interpretation of what the “shadow temperment” really is. Is that our 2nd domiant style or our counter style that is opposite of our temperment?

      • Yes, shame. JUST KIDDING! So glad you joined us! Shadow is your least well developed temperament, so it would be your 4th on the list. Just because Water is my shadow doesnt mean i dont care about people, it is that the negative aspects of water temperament drive me the most nuts about people. Make sense?

  7. Our staff has done teambuilding and our facilitator used a Working Styles Questionnaire. Once everyone revealed their style (Analytical, Driver, Amiable, or Expressive) we weren’t “properly” (for the lack of a better term) facilitated through the accepting yourself as well as others. That no one style was better than the other. We have one “water” style (my shadow) that has a way of appearing as tho she is accomplishing things….however, doesn’t finish unless the boss sits next to her and basically dictates what needs to be typed. No she is not new. Yes it drives me nuts. I really don’t know that I want to see the world that way because of the way you described the shadow of the Water. Yet, water was my secondary temperment to fire fire being my dominant. Please help me understand

      • during your webinar you discussed the water temperment as perceived by shadow. some of the characteristics were; emotional, nosey, meddlesome, chatty, a time waster, clingy, overly sensitive, always prying into other’s business… This drives me crazy but then I look at how you presented water as an advocate, agreeable, friendly, caring, personal, harmonious, compassionate, concerned, benevolent, and sensitive. I have these as secondary to my Fire as dominant. Is it clearer?

    • Hi John,
      There is some strong correlation and some mixed. High I tends to relate to water, high C tends to relate to Air, High S tends to relate to earth and that is sort fo the end of it. Fire temperament tends to be all over the map. Since the DISC instrument has a possibiltiy of 16 classic dispositions, you really must look at the correlations between the temperamants and the classic descriptions.

      One case that correlates is the DC pattern with AIR. This temperamant tends to be challenging for others and represents a very strong AIR temperamant as well.

      Since DISC is a behaviorally and context specific tool it can change over the time.

  8. I have to get back to work, but I wanted to thank the Ken Blanchard company for sponsoring this webinar and blog chat in addition to the panelists for their feedback. This has been a great eye-opener and a method I’m going to be reading more about in the very near future.
    Thank you!! =)

  9. I enjoyed your presentation today on temperament. I need some clarification on the shadow temperament. If my shadow temperament is a certain set of descriptive words, that is usually hidden, but displayed in others as their dominant temperament (did I get this right?) then it would not be easy to display my shadow temperament for fear of upsetting others.

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