By: Shoya Zichy, a Special to Overdrive
Discover Your Ideal Career
Matching who you are with what you do may seem like common sense, but the sad truth is that most people don’t have jobs that truly complement their personalities. In their newest book, Career Match, coauthors Shoya Zichy and Ann Bidou take readers through a simple, but revealing, ten-minute self-assessment quiz to help identify specific personality types.
By seeking the type of work that will inspire and exhilarate you, determining the kind of boss and work environment you need in order to thrive, and by confirming the rightness of the path you’re on, you can reflect on whether you should stay in your present career path or take steps to find a better one.
If the career you have doesn’t leave you feeling exhilarated or inspire the kind of passion and satisfaction you deserve in your life, it’s time to figure out which one will. One of the tools the authors have devised is called “Color Q Styles,” centered around four color personality groups.
Below are brief descriptions of their four Color Qs. Read and choose the one that is most like you.
Gold (46 percent of the population)
Grounded, realistic and accountable, Golds are the backbone of institutions of all kinds, both corporate and public. They are society’s protectors and administrators — of people, goods, schedules and services. They value procedures, respect the chain of command and have finely tuned systems for everything, from raising children to running large divisions. Golds create lists, get involved in details and are known for following through and mobilizing others to achieve concrete goals. They dislike change, abstract theories and new ideas that have not been tested. As leaders, they shine in establishing policy and readily accept the responsibility of leadership both at work and in volunteer activities in order to ensure projects remain orderly and on track. Known Golds include Barbara Walters, Barbara and George Bush, Sr., Queen Elizabeth and Colin Powell. (Golds correspond to the Myers-Briggs SJs.)
Blue (10 percent of the population)
Theoretical, competitive and always driven to acquire more knowledge and competence, Blues are unequalled when it comes dealing with complex, theoretical issues and designing new systems. They seek knowledge for its own sake and are driven to challenge and test ideas and authority. Their first reaction is to critique and set their own benchmarks against which they measure everyone and everything. They are highly precise in thought and language and are future oriented, trusting only logic, not the rules or procedures of the past. As leaders, Blues are visionary and do best in positions requiring strategic thinking. Their interest is in improving the idea or organization. Then, they move on with little interest in maintenance and consolidation or for explaining the complexities of a plan that, to them, seems so obvious. Blues include Hillary Clinton, Bill Gates, George Soros and former Vice President Cheney. (Blues correspond to the Myers-Briggs NTs.)
Red (27 percent of the population)
Action-oriented, spontaneous and focused on “now,” Reds need freedom to follow their impulses, which they trust over the judgment of others. Cool headed and ever courageous, they are proud of their ability to handle a crisis better than most. They excel as negotiators and troubleshooters and are often found in careers that provide lots of freedom, action, variety and the unexpected. Work must be fun and the environment collegial. Reds resist schedules and hierarchies. Long-term planning is a low priority as each day brings its own agenda. As leaders, they bring excitement and a sense of expediency. Reds observe the system, figure out where the breakdown and errors occur and rapidly implement the needed corrections. Famous Reds include former President Bush, Donald Trump, JFK, Ronald Reagan and Christie Whitman. (Reds correspond to the Myers-Briggs SPs.)
Green (17 percent of the population)
Empathetic, humanistic and expressive, they excel in areas with a human-interest focus. Greens are most productive in an environment that is idea-oriented, supportive and egalitarian. They need variety and the chance to creatively bring about change and impact the lives of others. Gifted in their understanding of people’s motivation, they have an unusual ability to influence and draw the best out of people. They also excel in verbal and written communications and are heavily represented among writers, TV anchors and biographers. As leaders, Greens are enthusiastic spokespersons for the organization or cause of their choice. They dramatize the mundane into something special, creating a unique charismatic quality that sweeps others into their cause. Famous Greens include Oprah, Gandhi, Gorbachev and Diane Sawyer. (Greens correspond the Myers-Briggs NFs.)
If you’ve identified the color that best fits you, see if the more detailed descriptions below fit from the aspect of heading on an entrepreneurial journey.
Driven by a sense of being the responsible overseer, Golds are cautious risk takers. In starting a new venture, they require a well-developed business plan and will quickly move to establish predictability, order, systems and established procedures. Unlike other types they are not likely to be diverted by opportunities outside their stated objectives or tried and true methodology. Rarely “dreamers and schemers” they need other styles, particularly those who can foresee and respond to changing markets and those who are best at handling the crisis of the moment. The special gifts of Golds are building operating teams, paying attention to details and bringing projects to fruition on time and on budget.
More than others, Blues yearn to establish their own venture as a testing ground for new ideas, whether realistic or not. In the hub of the excitement, however they often lose interest in the details, the daily routine and execution. Blues will take off on a hunch or with limited information, recognizing that risks are part of the deal. They can handle many projects at once and are highly adaptable in changing direction to meet the demands of the marketplace. They do not work with a predictable routine. They do delegate freely, being most productive when they can rely on other types. They particularly need those who deal well with people and those who set up procedures and controls. The special gifts of Blues include seeing new market trends and inspiring others with their vision.
Under the right circumstances, Reds are born to be entrepreneurs. Natural risk takers, they excel as long as what they are doing is in demand and business is brisk. Their competence and approach to risk is based on gut instinct, rather than deliberation. Often, with limited interest in formal learning, they opt for practical knowledge and become real specialists in their chosen fields. Reds do not rely on conventional ways but approach each new project with utmost energy and freedom of thought. Never bound by rules or procedures, they excel in a crisis, coolly managing the situation long after others have caved in. They are also outstanding negotiators, sizing up each individual situation and producing the best out of it. When strategic thinking or organizational skills are required, however, they best recognize their need for the talents of other types. The special gifts of Reds include getting things done without extensive resources.
Rarely do they start out as entrepreneurs. Often special opportunities or changes in employment status prompt a series of steps that turn into an independent venture. Greens are also typically not driven as much by material gain as others. Rather they get their satisfaction from providing value and expressing their creative energies. That is both their strength and their blind spot. They succeed because they are the ultimate “harmonizers” with the ability to win the loyalty of clients and staff alike. This quality combined with superior communication skills does make good business sense, although soft skills are often underestimated by other styles. Greens need to be complemented by the tough negotiating strengths of other color groups. Their special gifts include drawing the best from their teams and creatively communicating their product and ideas to the marketplace.
Once you identify your style, you can take action to leverage your natural strengths, improve teamwork, reduce conflict in the workplace and home and develop flexibility in dealing with challenging people.
Written orignally for w2wlink by Shoya Zichy.