The Enneagram: 9 Personality Types

Understanding ourselves better before the next job interview

No matter how great our CV looks or how confident we are in an interview, one of the biggest questions the interviewer’s mind for schools, universities and especially workplace interviews is, “Will they be a good fit for the school/team/organisation?” This is why it’s important to invest in a good personality profile analysis tool and really understand who your are.

The Enneagram is the best PPA tool I’ve come across over the years I’ve been involved in coaching. It’s the least boxy and because it’s a need-based analysis, we can come to understand our motivations and the motivations of others. This help us to live our lives and manage conflict in a more compassionate manner. Misunderstanding motives can be a central source of conflict. We can, however, better manage what we know or understand.

A new consultant who had just started with a company had just been trained on the Enneagram and insisted she practice on me. As she was a trusted friend, I let her. About 50 questions later, I came out with three scores very much the same. I then learned that one was ‘Me’ and the other two were my ‘wings’ – places I fly to in times of stress that are underlying all the time. Although it’s important to emphasise that we have a bit of all of the traits in us.

I have to say, I poo-pooed it initially because I hate to be pigeon-holed. But a month later I saw the book by Richard Rohr in the accommodation’s library on a weekend away. I surreptitiously read the chapter about my type and felt as if someone had spied on me my whole life! Armed with the knowledge I have from reading about all the personalities, I can be more understanding of those different to me, which could be everyone if you’re a Type 4!

Incidentally, if you’re happily employed and looking for a PPA tool to develop your team, I highly recommend using the Gallup Strengthfinder. It’s quite expensive but well worth it. After both my husband and I took the course, my daughter was keen to find out hers, so we bought the book and it allows a once-off code to do the survey online. So it can also be a great family resource once your children are old enough for their personalities to be fairly established.

It would seem to me the only good way to end this post is a call to action with the Ancient Greek aphorism, “Know thyself”. Happy hunting!

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