Staying on Task When Working With Different Productivity Styles

August 10, 2015 | 2,123 views

Staying on Task When Working With Different Productivity Styles

Staying on Task When Working With Different Productivity Styles

Being productive can make you feel like a superhero. Tackling a to-do list in half the time you expected it would take is invigorating, liberating, and freeing. But like most personality traits and work methods, not everyone has the same productivity style.



Carson Tate, the author of “Work Simply: Embracing the Power of Your Personal Productivity Style” outlines four productivity styles: Prioritizers, Planners, Arrangers, and Visualizers. When you’re working with your team on a project, it’s vital that you remain cognizant of these styles. Ignoring them could cause a communication breakdown, pushing you behind schedule.



Here’s how you can get the most out of working with each person’s productivity style.


1. The Prioritizer


Prioritizers put data and facts first. They need to know specifics in order to get the job done. Without these, prioritizers feel lost, confused, and unsure of what steps they need to take to complete the task at hand.


When working with a prioritizer, give as many details as possible. Outline specifically what you want from them. What is the purpose of the project? What does the finished product look like? What steps need to be taken to reach the final outcome?


Giving as many details as possible clears up any doubt or uncertainty.


2. The Planner


Planners are like the toddlers in the group in the sense that they want to know why everything is happening. This person is best suited to take a management role because he’s able to see the big picture and the small details.


When working with a planner, give him free rein to dig into the details of the project and get familiar with all the data. From there, let the planner pull out the big objective and the steps that must happen in order to reach the goal.


3. The Arranger


Arrangers are the more emotionally intelligent people on your team. These are the people who understand what’s happening, how well the team is progressing as a cohesive unit, and when it’s time to shift gears. Given the right tools – the ones he feels most comfortable using – to complete the task at hand, this person will get his work done quickly and efficiently.


4. The Visualizer


Visualizers are most productive when the big picture is made clear. Typically, a visualizer will jump between tasks. To any other productivity style, this can seem counterproductive, but for the visualizer, it’s a must.


Bringing Everyone Together


Bringing these various productivity styles together isn’t always easy. Each person brings their own unique talent to the group. Harnessing those unique talents and work styles by allowing your team members to take charge of what’s most comfortable for them will give you the best results over the long run.


Have you come up against any challenges while working with teams made up of various productivity styles? Tell us about your experience in the comments.



Author Profile

Jon Forknell is the Vice President and General Manager of Atlas Business Solutions, Inc., a software marketing company specializing in employee scheduling software, including ScheduleBase employee scheduling software, and other business software solutions. In the past, Jon has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as a SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Atlas Business Solutions was named as one of Software Magazine’s Top 500 Software Companies in 2004 through 2007 and again in 2010, 2013 and 2014.

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