When Employee A joined the organization, they were considered shy, introverted people who did not enjoy social events, kept to themselves, finished their work on time, and left. No one attempted to interact with this employee much either since they had all a set impression about their nature. When the weekend arrived, the team decided to go for a social outing but agreed that employee A doesn’t enjoy mingling with people and is not invited.
A couple of days later all the new employees were made to do a personality test and the results were poles apart from what the rest of the team had assumed about their personalities.
It turns out that employee A wasn’t shy or introverted at all. They scored very high in the conscientiousness segment, which means they are extremely mindful of people around them and highly disciplined. Hence, they took a while to adjust to their new surroundings after noting what their colleagues found comfortable. They were straightaway stereotyped into being an introverted person instead of understanding the reason behind their behavioural pattern.
The biggest difference between personality types and stereotypes is the manner in which they are each perceived.
Personality types are based on data accumulated based on validated tests an individual has taken where they are given a certain situation. They would select the best-suited reaction if they were to be in that situation hypothetically. The analyst studies the result and puts this individual in a particular category based on their cumulative answers. Hence a personality type is based on factual data for most of it.
For e.g., A person who scores high in emotional stability regardless of their race, gender or nationality is considered to be someone who is highly resilient in pressuring and stressful situations.
Wealth Dynamics offers a highly acclaimed and validated personality test, which can help one understand themselves and their employees/colleagues in a better light!
A stereotype is a generalized perception of a person, and in my opinion, highly prejudiced to an extent! These are behavioural patterns or traits assumed about a person based on race, nationality or sexual orientation. They do not have any scientific logic or any data analysis behind the assumptions or generalizations.
However, there are negative stereotypes and positive ones too, although we can’t say that they have any positive impact on people being stereotyped or the culture of an organization!
E.g., more often than not, a person with an Asian ethnic background will be expected to be good at math and be extremely hard working. Similarly, an employee who is a female will be assumed to be soft-spoken and warm-hearted, and a male employee at the exact same position will be assumed to be stricter or stern in his approach.
It is crucial to know the differences not confuse personality types with stereotypes for a healthy work environment.