Steady Eddie Personalities in the Workplace

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"S" type personalities are the "Steady Eddie" people among us that concentrate on people rather than tasks and are typically more introverted than extroverted. They place more attention on others than on themselves.

These people are the ones that you can always rely on in any situation. They strive to please and work hard to maintain harmony in all situations.

These are the Florence Nightengales of this world, the Barbara Bushes, the Mother Teresas. They love to help other people and work hard to create a stable environment at work and at home.

Every team needs to have one or more S type personalities. They love teamwork and strive to build a positive work environment where everyone is respected and included. They are very process oriented and prefer to have pre-established processes for all of their work and not complete work that is in "uncharted territory".

S's, like any of the personality traits, have strengths and weaknesses. I have summarized these traits in the following table;


  • Stability
  • Good listeners
  • Patient and tolerant
  • Logical
  • Harmony - does not like conflict
  • Perform consistently
  • Helps others
  • Develops specialized skills
  • Creates a stable environment

 Required Work Environment
  • Where sincere appreciation is provided for work performed
  • Requires process and time to finish work
  • Acceptance
  • Maintenance of environment without change
  • Predictable routines
  • Standard operating procedures
  • Minimal conflict

 Needs People Who
  • Handle unexpected change
  • Handle conflict
  • Are flexible
  • Who can apply pressure to others when required

 To be more effective
  • Needs appreciation
  • Consistency
  • Clear direction
  • Must be conditioned before change occurs
  • Must know how his or her effort contributes
  • Must have creativity encouraged

 Major Strengths
  • Tolerant
  • Patient
  • Loyal
  • Team player
  • Dependable
  • Supportive
  • Manages repetitive work
  • Practical and organized

 Major Limitations
  • Under stress can become stubborn and not want to negotiate
  • Sudden change
  • Indecisive
  • Oversensitive
  • Holds a grudge
  • Does not like dealing with conflict

 Dealing with S Types
  • Provide sufficient detail
  • Be sincere
  • Provide time for decisions
  • Reduce risk
  • Let them know you care for them as people.

If you are an S type personality, your biggest challenge is to deal productively with change and situations requiring quick decisions. Change and decisions that don't fall into pre-existing processes can be stressful. Work with your team to manage and anticipate change and establish guidelines around decision timing. Make sure that you give yourself adequate time to think through issues before you have to make a decision.

If you are managing an S, be aware of these things and provide a low conflict work environment complete with pre-established processes and procedures. Try not to put them in a pioneering type role. Give the S adequate time to make decisions and pull them into conversations around team building.

If you follow these basic guidelines your interaction with S type personalities will be much more fun and substantially more productive!

For more details please refer to the Strength Zone website.

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David M. Taylor has 1 articles online

A graduate from the University of Alberta in 1989 with a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, David M. Taylor is a professional engineer with extensive engineering and project management experience. Over the past ten years, he has held project management and leadership roles, working with management and staff to improve overall performance in the development and implementation of business and project execution standards in North America, Europe and Asia.

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Steady Eddie Personalities in the Workplace

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This article was published on 2010/04/04