The Role of Individual Differences in the Workplace

The author in the paper states that the most successful influencers are able to assess accurately their target influencers and adapt their influencing messages to suit them. Such adjustments lead to the creation of influencer-influence rapport. The conversation of people who are in rapport flows, and both their body movements and their words become synchronized with each other. The recommendation to match the influence so as to create rapport is itself based on the even broader notion of liking. This says that we like people like ourselves and, in consequence, will be more willing to comply with their requests (Aguinis, &amp. Henle, 2001),.
Not only do we know that people are different, but we also know that they are predictably different. Indeed, we spend a great deal of our time classifying them into broad types, and explaining the differences between the types. Every popular newspaper contains an astrological section which implies that Capricorns behave in one way and that Scorpios act in another. The twelve signs of the Zodiac represent one attempt at classifying people into personality types based on the time of the year in which they were born. How accurate or useful are they Historically, many attempts have been made to classify people according to their personalities. The Greek physician, Hippocrates, offered the temperaments model of personality. He believed that there were four basic personalities or temperaments – melancholic, choleric, sanguine and phlegmatic. In his view, each was determined by the amount and type of bile and phlegm that people possessed in their bodies (Aguinis, &amp. Henle, 2001).
Distinguishing Between Personality Types
If you are to select a particular influencing approach on the basis of your target influencer’s personality, then the personality framework employed has to be both easy to understand and simple to use. You need to be able to divide people into a very limited number of personality types or classes, based on the personality traits that they possess. In modern times, Carl Gustav Jung was the first to observe that people’s behavior, rather than being individually unique, fitted into patterns, and that many of the seemingly random differences in human behavior were actually ordered and consistent (Lambert, 1996).
It is obvious that any attempt to reduce personality into only four categories inevitably ignores the subtlety of human differences. On the other hand, anything more complex is unusable by an influencer. For this reason, in using these four personality stereotypes, one is inevitably trading accuracy off against ease of use. The framework does allow you to classify the individual whom you may wish to influence in a simple way using your observation of their behavior and the examination of their created work or home environment. Such information can then be immediately put into practice.
One obvious way to understand the relationship of individual differences to work-related behavior is to examine the applied literature on personality testing in the workplace. Psychological tests, attempting to measure individual differences related to occupational behaviors, have been used for over 60 years, and they now exist nearly 80,000 occupational-related tests. Both world wars, particularly the second, particularly important for the ‘testing business’ and most armed services are still active users of psychological tests for selection and training.