“Yes, my work instructions were very clear, but we still had re-work on the back end. Like the team didn’t listen to what I told them. Even after I had them repeat the instructions back to me. I am a new manager to this team, but they seemed to understand what I said,” Rory explained.
“Tell me about the team,” I wanted to know.
“Not much to tell. When I took over the role, I asked to see the employee files. Our company does a pretty good workup on personality profiles, even for technicians. The profiles were normal, what I would expect. The company even created a standard profile for a technician that they were hiring to. Each team member was pretty much the same. They each showed attention to detail, compliance to rules and standards, persistence to complete a project. I don’t understand what happened to them.”
“What do you think changed?” I asked.
“It’s like they were different people when they took the profile and when they were actually in the work environment. It’s like when they walked out onto the field of work, things changed,” Rory shook his head.
“What do you think changed?” I repeated.
“The work environment,” Rory was searching for an answer. “The environment they were working in did not demand the attention to detail, compliance or persistence they had all demonstrated on their profiles.”
“It was a different context?” I wondered. “It was a different context. So, the work environment, the context trumps personality?”
For a more complete example of Culture Trumping Personality.