Today we're focusing on the most compassionate color, Yellows.
If you're catching up, here's a link to the test, and you can read up on our overview below.
Without further delay: Yellows!
Yellows are defined by their high level of emotional intelligence. They are empathetic, in touch with their own emotions, and they can easily build interpersonal relationships with others. They have an introverted side too: they thrive in quiet environments, they love nature, and they often act as peacemakers during arguments, preferring harmony over discord. Yellows are extremely loyal and morally minded, and often volunteer in their spare time. If you have someone on your team who is always there to offer a shoulder to cry on, a listening ear, or words of support, you have your Yellow!
Yellow Strengths and Weaknesses
The compassion and emotional intelligence of Yellows make them an asset to their team. They are excellent rapport builders and communicators, due to their ability to read their audience and listen to them attentively. Their empathy gives them a leg up in handling customer complaints, building relationships with clients, and helping a team that is in disagreement find a compromise solution that works for everyone. They are more concerned with the needs of others than their own needs, and so they'll often go the extra mile for their team, especially if they've developed a close bond with their teammates, which is common for Yellows. They are loyal as well, so they'll stick with teams and projects to the end. Overall, they make excellent support members of any team, both emotionally and practically.
Yellows struggle in confrontation, and some may have difficulty holding their ground in an argument or discussion, which can mean that they're forced to compromise when they should have taken a hard stance on an issue. Yellows can also be more concerned with maintaining the status quo than with pushing themselves outside of their comfort zone, due to their aversion to stress. Their compassion can also lead them to shy away from difficult but necessary decisions, especially when it comes to penalizing or firing members of their team. It's important for Yellows to let their compassion be their strength, but also take a stand when they need too, and make hard choices for the good of the team when necessary.
How Yellows Are Motivated
Yellows are the most morally minded of all the colors. They often work for causes that they fervently believe in, which makes them uniquely suited to our line of work, fundraising for our charity partners! They find satisfaction in fulfilling the needs of those around them, and on doing good works for others. As such, Yellows often provide their own sense of motivation. As a leader, you can encourage Yellows by building a close bond with them, and giving them feedback on the good work they're doing, both for the cause and for the team. Let them build their relationships with co-workers, clients and customers, and watch them flourish, providing guidance and drive to help them step outside of their comfort zone and grow.
How Yellows Lead Teams
Yellows ability to form close bonds with their team make them easy leaders to get along with, and they're usually the kind of leader you want to socialize with outside of work. As a Yellow leader, let your ability to build rapport with your team take the lead and create those close bonds. You'll end up with a tight-knit team willing to go the extra mile for each other, and that closeness will facilitate clear team communication. The trick here is balancing your personal connections with professionalism. You will need to keep your team members accountable for deadlines and other project requirements, whether you are friends with your team or not.
The easiest way to avoid the pitfall of having an emotionally connected, but underperforming team, is to set clear boundaries. Remind your teammates that while you're all friends, the purpose of your team is to serve your cause. Make sure your team understands what's expected of them, and remind them that your role is to provide them with support. If you do have to push a team member to keep them up to the boundaries you've set, remind them that the task your team has come together for is equally as important as maintaining the closeness of the team. Remind them that their responsibility is not just to the project, but the team as a whole, and you can keep your team on track.
I interviewed DC Site Representative Mark Mumm, a rising star in the DC office, for his thoughts on how to be successfully Yellow at DialogueDirect. Take it away, Mark!
1. What Yellow characteristics are strongest in you?
Certainly the empathetic part, I joke with myself that I'm too empathetic! But in terms of what I do at DialogueDirect, it allows me to listen to the person in front of me, to get a better idea of their story and where they're coming from. And I'm definitely cause-motivated.
2. How does being Yellow affect the way you're motivated?
It motivates me in terms of growth, not just for myself but for my teammates, to see them grow, whether they're directly on my team or not. It's also motivates me to remember, on the hard days, that there is a kid out there waiting for help, waiting for you to do your job, and remembering that responsibility gets me motivated.
3. How does it affect the way you lead?
Different people need to be motivated in different ways, with respect to who they are. In that aspect, my empathy allows me to know where they're coming from, understand their motivation, and put them on the right path. The desire to see other people grow, to share your accomplishments with them, that's what directs my leadership the most.
4. What's your second strongest color?
Blue! I'm just a fun, energetic, wacky dude and that comes through in my work (if you could see my hair right now, you'd understand.)
5. Any advice for being successful for other Yellows?
Own it! Embrace your empathy. People might give you flack for being too empathetic, too "soft", but there's no shame in that, it's a strength! Build those bonds and those relationships, own that.
Bringing It All Together
So ends Marc Accetta March! We've given you a lot to consider. We've talked about how to identify these colors, how to use that knowledge to build teams and motivate yourself and others. We've heard from successful leaders of every color, and how they manage their strengths and weaknesses to be the best fundraisers and leaders they can be.
The most important rule, when it comes to Marc Accetta: these are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. Everyone has outliers, oddities, and exceptions to these guidelines, and most importantly, everyone is composed of every color. While two or even three colors are dominant, prepare for people to surprise you. Your compassionate Yellow might love healthy competition every now and then, and your Green may have a soft side. Use these notes to inform your decisions on how to guide your team, but always remember to take into account your own instincts: no one knows your team better than you do!
I hope these guidelines help you build a stronger team. If you're interested in learning more about color team building, you can follow how we build our teams on our careers page.