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21 June 2021 | by Becky Turner
It’s not controversial to say that everybody is different, in fact our uniqueness should be celebrated! Our differences are the result of many factors: genetics, cultural influences, upbringing & experiences, and of course our personalities. How many times have we been asked to complete a personality questionnaire when slogging through a recruitment process? How many times are conflicts defined as a ‘clash of personalities’? We talk about personality a lot, but how do we actually measure and channel this insight to enhance the working experiences for our colleagues?
Let me explain this in more detail – traditionally, the workplace in western culture has been created for a certain demographic. At one point, this represented the vast majority of workers, however the workforce is now a much more diverse place and this must be reflected back into workplace design in order to improve the working experiences and wellbeing of all your people, whilst significantly driving up productivity. For example, open plan offices with hotdesking is well suited to extroverts, providing a place where they are always visible, a stimulated environment for them to focus on process tasks, and gain energy and motivation from regular social interactions. Introverts, on the other hand, are likely to find this experience overwhelming, with rapidly depleting energy resources throughout the day, which can lead to burnout, stress and a nosedive in productivity. To cite another personality type, individuals who are open to experience enjoy the variety and change that agile working brings, enabling their unique creativity and imagination to shine through. Those on the other end of the scale, however, prefer structure, process, and familiarity, and will prefer to have an element of personal control over their workplace.
Whilst the provision of a greater variety of worksettings is becoming increasingly common in the workplace and has the potential to ultimately support all personality types, it is imperative that the right types of settings are provided in the right locations with respect to the personality composition of the associated departments or neighbourhoods. If this is not considered, it’s likely that, at best, the spaces are rarely utilised, and at worst, your people will become disengaged and stressed.
Claremont utilises the scientifically validated Big Five personality traits:
Openness to Experience
As part of Claremont’s objective to create spaces for everybody, not just the few, we need to understand who ‘everybody’ is in your organisation – who inhabits your workplace and what do they need to help them thrive at work?
To do this, our consultancy team have been continually evolving our Future Workplace Questionnaire, a colleague survey which ascertains opinions, preferences, and requirements of our clients’ people. As part of this evolution, we are thrilled to introduce Personal Preferences into our questionnaire based on the scientifically endorsed Big Five personality traits – Openness, Conscientiousness, Extroversion, Agreeableness and Emotional Stability. Our 20-question attitude scale, adapted from the scientifically validated IPIP-BFM-20 questionnaire (Topolewska-Siedzik, Skimina, Strus, & Cieciuch, 2014), enables us to identify the predominant personalities within your organisation and departments, enriching our insight into your organisation, which translates into a more tailored workplace design and change support strategy.
Helping you achieve the optimal combination of people, space and technology, enabling your organisation to realise its maximum potential in a FutureFlexible way.
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