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The Type 9 Leadership Style: An Inclusive and Collaborative Approach

Jul 05, 2023

Leadership comes in various forms.


The Enneagram Type 9 leadership style brings an important blend of harmony, collaboration, and inclusivity.


In this article, you'll learn more about the strengths, potential challenges, growth opportunities, and the impact of Type 9 leaders on team members who may not share the same personality type. By understanding the dynamics of the Type 9 leadership style, you can foster a balanced and inclusive work environment that inspires collaboration and personal growth.


Read on to learn more about the anatomy of a Type 9 Leader


Strengths of Type 9 Leaders: 

  • Creating Harmony and Mediating Conflicts: The Peacemakers excel in creating harmonious work environments. They have a natural ability to mediate conflicts and foster understanding among team members, promoting collaboration and positive relationships.

  • Inclusive and Collaborative Approach: Type 9 leaders value the opinions and contributions of every team member. They actively seek input and encourage collaboration, creating a sense of belonging and shared ownership within the team.

  • Calm and Steady Presence: These leaders bring a sense of calm and stability to the team. Their composed demeanor helps alleviate stress and tension, creating a supportive atmosphere that allows team members to thrive.

Potential Challenges and Blind Spots:

  • A tendency toward Avoidance: The Peacemakers may have a tendency to avoid conflicts or difficult conversations, which can hinder addressing critical issues within the team. Their work will be in learning to assert themselves and address conflicts in a constructive manner.

  • Struggle with Decision-Making: Type 9 leaders may find it challenging to make firm decisions, as they prioritize maintaining peace and avoiding confrontation. They may want to work on developing their assertiveness and making timely decisions.

  • Difficulty with Setting Boundaries: The Nine Leader may struggle with setting boundaries, leading to potential issues with workload management and prioritization. They will need to focus on developing assertiveness and effective time management skills.


Growth Opportunities for Type 9 Leaders

To continue to enhance their leadership effectiveness, Type 9 leaders can focus on the following growth areas:

Developing Assertiveness: Type 9 leaders will most likely need to work on developing their assertiveness skills, expressing their needs, and advocating for their perspectives. This allows them to make confident decisions and effectively communicate their vision.

Embracing Conflict Resolution: The Peacemakers may want to find ways to embrace conflict resolution skills, learning to address conflicts directly and constructively. By facilitating open dialogue and seeking resolutions, they can create a more resilient and productive team.

Enhancing Decision-Making Abilities: A Nine Leader can benefit from improving their decision-making abilities. They can practice making timely and firm decisions, considering the overall impact on the team, and aligning decisions with the organization's goals.

For additional opportunities, study Type 9s resource points, Type 3 and Type 6, to see what behaviors and qualities they can pull in to enhance their leadership style.


Potential impact on their team:

Positive impacts

  1. Harmony and conflict resolution: Type 9 leaders excel at creating a harmonious work environment and facilitating conflict resolution. They prioritize maintaining positive relationships, promoting collaboration, and ensuring that everyone's voice is heard within the team.
  2. Diplomacy and consensus-building: These leaders have a natural inclination towards diplomacy and seek to find common ground among team members. They are skilled at navigating differences of opinion, facilitating discussions, and fostering consensus, promoting a sense of unity and cooperation.
  3. Supportive and empathetic: The Type 9 leader is typically supportive, empathetic, and understanding. They create a safe space for team members to express their thoughts and emotions, fostering a culture of psychological safety and well-being.
  4. Mediation and facilitation: This leader is adept at mediating conflicts and facilitating productive discussions. They encourage open communication, actively listen to different perspectives, and help the team find mutually beneficial solutions.

Negative Impacts

  1. Avoidance of confrontation: Type 9 leaders may have a tendency to avoid confrontation and difficult conversations. This avoidance can result in unresolved issues and delayed decision-making, potentially hindering the team's progress.
  2. Indecisiveness and passivity: A Nine leader may struggle with decisiveness and assertiveness, often deferring to others' opinions or avoiding making firm decisions. This indecisiveness and passivity can slow down progress and impede the team's ability to take decisive action.
  3. Difficulty asserting personal needs: The Type 9 leader may prioritize maintaining peace and harmony to such an extent that they neglect their own needs and preferences. This self-neglect can lead to burnout and hinder their ability to effectively lead and advocate for their team.
  4. Resistance to change: These 9 leaders may have a resistance to change and a preference for maintaining the status quo. While this can contribute to stability, it may also impede innovation and adaptation to evolving circumstances.


It's important to remember that the impact of a leadership style can vary depending on the specific context, the composition of the team, and the project at hand. A balanced approach that combines the natural gifts and strengths of the Type 9 leadership style with an awareness of potential challenges and blindspots can help maximize their positive impact and lessen the negative impacts. 


Every person is unique. Factors like childhood experiences, race, culture, birth order, socioeconomic status, education level, religion/spirituality, family dynamics, and more, all impact how a person's personality and strategies for navigating life show up in the real world. Understanding yourself, or someone else, through the lens of the Enneagram simply gives you a starting point to begin to better understand and support yourself and others. 


Sarah Wallace is the owner and lead trainer at Enneagram MBA, the host of the Enneagram MBA podcast, and an Enneagram Certified coach. Learn more about Sarah and her approach to the Enneagram here




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