They create (and destroy) confidence.
They start (and wreck) relationships.
They land (and lose) jobs.
You’ve probably felt the sting of a careless comment from a co-worker or experienced hurtful criticism from a supervisor. Perhaps you’ve whispered office gossip you wish you could take back or said something in the heat of the moment you regretted when the argument had passed.
On the brighter side, a charming remark may have led you to love, or praise from your boss may have been a turning point in your career.
Have you ever wondered why those words stuck with you? What makes a compliment so meaningful and an insult so powerful?
I would tell you it’s your temperament.
Your temperament—or hard wiring—determines the words you say and the words you need, and it’s the reason the very thing someone says could cut like a knife.
Your temperament is on full display every day at home and at work. It shows up in every conversation, every interaction, every team meeting, and every conference call.
Let’s look at a few examples.
On your best day, one of these might sound like you:
The Office Optimist: Able to see the best in people and circumstances and inspire people toward action
The Visionary Decision-Maker: Able to see the finish line and all the steps and decisions it will take to get there
The Kind Diplomat: Able to steer people and projects toward compromise, ensuring everyone feels heard and valued
The Thoughtful Analyzer: Able to identify obstacles and find creative, detailed solutions
But on your worst day, you may have a tendency to look more like:
The Attention Magnet: Thrives on attention from others and will use charm, jokes, or storytelling to stay in the spotlight (even at another’s expense)
The Office Bully: Makes all the decisions, is intolerant of mistakes, tears, or emotions, and is unconcerned with what happens in the wake of their demanding leadership
The Unenthusiastic Procrastinator: Lacks a sense of urgency and struggles with indecision
The Judgmental Skeptic: Assumes the worst in situations and about people and can be critical and unforgiving of others
Sound like someone in your office?