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Business Types

Business Types

INFP Reflections Blog

By Paul Dunning

I have always been fascinated by the concept that your greatest strength is often also your greatest weakness.

Many business owners have preferences for T and for J. Preferring Thinking and Judging is an advantage in business. It gives you a logical, decisive approach.

If you have preferences for INFP, you tend to look at things from an Intuitive and Feeling perspective.

Take this situation for example. A retail company is having trouble with their public image. People are posting negative reviews and rating their customer service as poor. The company decides that training will solve the problem and hires a consulting company to provide the training. The consulting company asks questions about why the training is required, like any good consultant should, and finds that there is a range of customer service experienced by the public. Some staff are great and others not so good.

The company has decided to train the managers and then they can impart what they learn to their staff. This is cost effective, an investment in developing management level employees, and quick. A day of training and everyone goes away happy.

The consultant does a little further research and discovers that this approach could be improved upon and presents his opinions to the company before designing the training. What happens? Well, this is the case of a company trying to solve a problem using their greatest strength.

The general public interacts with the people on the floor: sales associates, cashiers. If you exclude these people from the solution, the problem isn’t solved. Even if the managers disseminate the information well it will be seen as the fault of the front-end staff. You need to involve everyone in the solution. That way all staff bear responsibility for the result and all staff feel like they are valuable because they had training dollars invested in their development.

The INFP perspective can identify this more easily because of the focus on people and their needs. The training costs a bit more but is much more effective.

All a customer needs, to prompt him or her to post a bad review even after they’ve had great service at the counter, is to experience a cashier having a bad time because she’s at the end of a long shift and has been going steady for hours. She gets the last word the customer hears.

Further reading for INFPs and others:

For more thoughts on understanding yourself and communicating well, read Introduction to Type and Communication.

If you live in the USA, Introduction to Type and Communication is now available on Kindle.

This entry was posted on Monday, February 2nd, 2015 at 11:11 am and is filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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