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Are you a Kim Kardashian or a Steve Jobs? New research reveals five personality types


A new study from HR, payroll, workforce management, and culture solutions provider UKG has identified the five personality types of UK workers, as well as what that means for their colleagues and how managers can best support their development. At the end of this article, we’ve added a link to the test so you can find out what your personality type is.

The majority of employees surveyed (21%) were identified as the ‘Negotiator’ personality type, perhaps best seen in prominent figures such as former prime minister of South Africa, Nelson Mandela and Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres.

The five personality types uncovered by the research include the Go Getter, the Visionary, the Negotiator, the Thinker and the Executive. UKG identified what makes each of them tick, their strengths and weaknesses, as well as how they like to communicate with colleagues and managers, plus their preferences and habits when it comes to their daily roles.

Most of us are Negotiator type worker

The most common personality type, the Negotiator, is typically a “people person”, with a reputation for being reliable, down-to-earth, easy-going and supportive. Their presence within teams is a useful source of diplomatic and measured contributions.

In total, UKG surveyed 2,000 full-time workers across the UK employed across various industries including c-suite and people managers. According to the study:

The least common personality type is the Go Getter, the outgoing and energetic office goer that is highly competitive and akin to the workaholic. The research found that managers should keep their communication with the Go Getter short and to the point, and via instant messaging platforms such as Teams and Slack where possible.

The Visionary, Thinker and Executive each make up 14% of the workforce, demonstrating the value of variety and the distinct differences between employees that must all be catered to.

The Visionary, best seen in celebrities such as Steve Jobs and James Dyson, channel energy into discovering new ideas and possibilities, often finding new solutions to age-old problems. For managers, the research found that this personality type welcomes all types of feedback, preferring one-to-one meetings and appraisals that allow for back and forth discussion on the best course of action.

How to adapt workplaces to suit all personality types

Commenting on the findings, Claire Lock, VP, HR International Markets at UKG said: “While many people managers may already be aware of the different traits and personalities within their teams, it can sometimes be challenging to adapt certain workplace policies to suit everyone.

“The results of our survey clearly outline that to meet the evolving needs of the modern worker, managers need more support than ever. People managers must adapt their methods to ensure they are getting the best out of every employee, and a variety of factors are at play here. Our findings can help managers with the methods in which they communicate with team members, which working environments support their development best and how they prefer to receive feedback.

“For the Thinker for example, clearly defined process work best for communication and all feedback should be clear, detailed and actionable. The Thinker also welcomes flexibility, preferring freedom to choose when they work collaboratively and when they need time to work independently. These insights can equip managers with the tools they need to get the best out of each and every member of their team – no matter what personality type they are.”

With the support of behavioural psychologist Donna Dawson, UKG determined the five key personality types and their key traits, features and working styles. Dawson analysed the survey data and identified five sets of characteristics that are commonly found across teams, departments and businesses. She shared her analysis on what makes them tick, as well as advice on how to create a working environment in which all of these personalities can thrive.

Click here to read the full report.
Click here to take the test and find out which personality type you fit into.


You may also be interested in an article about neurodiversity and if you should tell your boss that you have adhd.