Are You Working with an Enneagram Type 7?Mar 13, 2023
The Enneagram can be transformative in your own self awareness journey.
And the insight can also be valuable in your relationship management skills at work - with those you lead, with those you work beside, and with those you serve, like your clients.
Emotional intelligence is made up of four parts:
- Self awareness
- Self management
- Others awareness
- Relationship management
In this series about understanding people at work you’ll gain insight beyond your own type and into how others close to you are viewing the world.
(In the video interview here, you'll learn from Ellen Ingraham and Kate Son about life and work on the "inside" as a Type 7.)
If any of these ring true, you might be working with an Enneagram Type 7....
- Do they tend to look on the bright side, and can find the good in almost any situation?
- Are they easily fascinated by interesting people, events, and ideas?
- Are you always hearing new, visionary ideas from them?
- Do they dislike limits of any kind and prefer to keep their options open?
First thing is first, though...
The foundation for the Enneagram Type 7 energy is a striving to feel excited.
They are focused on possibilities, exciting plans in the future, the good in any situation, and brainstorming new ideas.
One of their many superpowers is: energizing others. They shine when they have the opportunity to use leverage enthusiasm for project, presentation, cause, etc.
Common struggles of a Type 7 can include: being scattered, lack of follow thru, impulsiveness, toxic positivity, and never being satisfied with what they have
Other clues you might be working with an Enneagram 7:
- They are always very smiley, happy, and upbeat who are fun to be around and make work fun.
- They love talking about new ideas and plans and are very future-oriented.
- They get very enthusiastic and animated when discussing an innovative plan they're working on.
- They struggle to focus on projects that don't excite them.
- They can find good rationalizations for things they want to do that they really shouldn't be doing (or vise versa).
- It can be hard to talk to them about what's not going well. They seem to always find a way to duck out when the mood gets heavy.
- They can overbook themselves, arrive late to meetings, and forget commitments.
Anyone coming to mind?
If so, below you'll find a few ideas for working well them:
- Avoid excessive negativity and criticism.
- Allow them to work independently as much as possible.
- Give them space to flush out good ideas.
- They're not big rebels, but do dislike being controlled. Allow for flexibility and options as much as you can.
- Respect their preferences and freedom and they'll do the same for you.
Sources: 9 Types of Leadership book by Beatrice Chestnut, Awareness to Action book by Robert Tallon and Mario Sikora, Insight book by Tasha Eurich,
If you haven't already, be sure to download your quick reference guide, Understanding People Cheat Sheet, to gain insight into working with all the Enneagram Types.
To learn more about how the Enneagram can benefit your team and organization, learn about bringing a workshop or training in with the options here.
Sarah Wallace is the owner of Enneagram MBA, a team training company, host of the Enneagram MBA podcast, speaker, and workshop facilitator. Companies and organizations hire her to help them use the Enneagram to develop confident, effective, and emotionally intelligent leaders with powerful, productive, and happy teams.
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