It has been almost a month since we revealed the eight most common personality types found via the Hogan suite of assessments. We have already taken an in-depth look at Rebels, Marketers, and Proletarians. This week, we continue our dive into these personality types by closely examining the personality profile of Congenials.
Congenials make up approximately 17% of the working population. Their Hogan profile is highlighted by flat to slightly below average scores on the Motives, Values, Preferences Inventory (MVPI) but with a slight upturn on the getting along dimensions of Altruism, Affiliation, and Tradition; elevated scores on both Adjustment and Interpersonal Sensitivity on the Hogan Personality Inventory (HPI); and above-average scores on Cautious, Reserved, and Dutiful on the Hogan Development Survey (HDS). See Figure 1 below for the full profile.
Figure 1: Congenials Hogan profile
The Reputation of Congenials
We had eight Hogan consultants with a combined 82 years of experience provide independent written interpretations of the Congenials profile shown in Figure 1. Some of the words our experts most frequently used to describe Congenials were “nice,” “willing,” “resilient,” “submissive,” “listener,” and “agreeable.” Additionally, we examined the workplace reputations of Congenials by drawing on Hogan 360° data gathered with Hogan distributor Peter Berry Consultancy.
Colleagues, supervisors, and subordinates said Congenials bring a positive attitude to work, manage emotions maturely, are calm and even tempered, are never rude or abrasive, and are positive role models for others. At the same time, Congenials’ work colleagues also said that Congenials are not particularly competitive or driven and that they have difficulty in recognizing and challenging poor performance. In other words, Congenials are seen by their coworkers as friendly, optimistic, and caring, but not particularly driven to produce results.
Lastly, our job performance archive also tells us that Congenials are seen as high performers when it comes to engagement, team building, handling stress, and relationship building. Moreover, Congenials were rated the highest-performing group overall by their supervisors. To summarize, Congenials are friendly, polite, relaxed, and rule abiding at work, but they’re not particularly interested in climbing the corporate ladder.
Common Careers for Congenials
Congenials prefer careers through which they can connect with others. They also prefer cooperation to competition and would rather work with people than work against them. Our data show Congenials are overrepresented in administrative and clerical jobs. Not surprisingly, they are underrepresented in sales jobs, which tend to be more competitive than cooperative in nature.
We also found that Congenials are underrepresented in entry-level supervisory and managerial roles. Additionally, Congenials are rarely entrepreneurs. In popular media, characters such as Groot (Marvel), Ann Perkins (Parks and Recreation), and Olaf (Disney’s Frozen) are prototypical Congenials — optimistic, friendly, and cooperative.
Advice for Congenials
If you are a Congenial, you should recognize your talent for bringing people together and improving team morale. Your manager likely sees you as a model employee and a high performer. However, some of your coworkers might see you as someone who is more concerned with keeping everyone happy than getting results. You will have to prove to them that you care about results as much as you do about the people you work with.
In leadership roles, you tend to emphasize the three Cs: collaboration, cohesion, and consensus. You prefer projects and tasks that require group cooperation. You prioritize the importance of getting along, sometimes at the expense of productivity, and you may insist that everyone agree on a matter before moving forward. Team members who prioritize productivity over pleasantness will struggle with your management style.
How to Deal with Congenials
If your boss is a Congenial, recognize that he or she will be sensitive to emotional discomfort and make extra effort to ensure everyone is happy. Your Congenial boss is also likely to present situations as more positive and optimistic than they really are. This leader will be uncomfortable delivering bad news; a Congenial boss once fired an employee in such a kind and gentle way that the employee didn’t even realize he was fired! You will need to actively request feedback from others if you want to get an honest assessment of your performance.
If any of your employees are Congenials, realize that you will naturally find them likeable and easy to get along with. They will rarely complain about anything, and if they do complain, you can bet it is a serious problem. Because Congenials cause so few problems and are so friendly, you will naturally tend to see them as model employees and high performers. However, you should keep in mind that Congenials are excellent at building interpersonal relationships, sometimes at the expense of productivity. Pay careful attention to their actual results when it comes time for performance evaluations.