Blog of Sara Jakša

Working in Teams with Different Jungian Types

When I was presenting my seminar paper based on the Jung‘s functions, I could tell from the comments of my professors, that they considered the MBTI as mostly being used in the team creation. Apparently if you put different people in the same group, the results are usually more creative.

I just hope that they are not simply tucking the unrelated type in the group of mostly the same types. Which could easily happen on the higher levels of any job, as the higher the job is, the more likely the people there are from the same time. For example, a lot of managers of the biggest firms are ENTJ (Te-Ni) and a lot of solders are ISTJ (Si-Te).

But from my experience, this is the worst way of doing it. One person is not going to make a difference, if all the rest of the team is in one direction. It is just going to frustrate that person. The results (at best minimal) do not justify the frustration (a lot).

There was a study, that looked over the different software development groups to see how well they worked together. The teams worked relatively well, especially if they had a lot of Te-Ni or Ni-Te people in it. The people with Si-Te or Se-Ti combination worked well with them as well. But add people with Fe in the stack, the the team goes from being efficient to being a nice place to work in. Which hurt performance and disturbed the information flow.

Surprisingly, there was not a single person with Ne in the top of their stack involved with the study. I plan to rectify that now.

I liked working in the Toastmasters. At the start, I had the Fe type making sure, that I was starting to get included in the workings and invited me to go work for the board. Later on, I had a sounding board, with Ni in the stack (pretty sure it was not the first function), who provided the different structure to my thinking. And later on a Te-Si type, who went and actually made our ideas practical in the long run.

Toastmasters is quite an interesting experience in itself, to see the dynamics show themselves. For one, the Toastmasters is clearly a Fe-Si environment, but surprisingly, it does not attracts a lot of Fe-Si types. Which provides some interesting place for experimenting.

There were other environments, that I did not like as much. One was also an Fe-Si environment (I must be attracted to them is some way, now that I think about it), but it had a lot of Fe-dominant types. There, I had no idea what was I supposed to be doing all the time. It felt… stiff. I had a person, that I am sure had Fi and Se as the first function, running away in less than 2 weeks.

Also, I prefer to work not in the group, but with one other person. Probably because of the recent revelation about myself, that I don‘t like that the group moves at the speed of the slowest person. As least in a pair, there is just one person that moves that slow, and that person can always disconnect. While it is hard for the whole rest of the group to disconnect.

I am kinda sure that it is the Ti-Fe connection that makes me like that.

In pairs I work well with most people. Notice that I say here most, and not all. Not sure if most people work well with me. :)

I think that this is one of the subjects that needs more observation. I wonder what other things I am still going to learn that way.