We've discussed Reds, the competitors, and Greens, the thinkers. Today, we're going to focus on the extroverts: Blues!
You can find our Red and Green posts below, along with our overview. If you haven't taken your own test yet, you can take it here.
Energetic, extroverted, spontaneous and enthusiastic, Blues are most likely to be voted "the life of the party." They draw inspiration from working with others and are the most dedicated team players of all the colors. They are creative brainstormers who tend to focus on ideas rather than individual details. If you're the most talkative person in the office, if you get along well with everyone on your team, and you love having fun while you work, then you're Blue!
Blue Strengths and Weaknesses
Blues are often the "team glue." They love being a part of something, and they thrive in a harmonious team, working with their colleagues towards a common goal. Their spontaneity and creative minds make them excellent resources for generating new ideas, or finding unusual methods for solving problems. They are easy going and work well in unstructured environments, which makes them adaptable.
Blues struggle with repetitive or mundane tasks, as these jobs drain their energy and don't allow for them to be spontaneous. Their easy going nature also means that they can balk at harsh deadlines, either failing to react quickly enough to an approaching deadline, or allowing stress to keep them from working at their most efficient. Their spontaneity can also translate into a lack of reliability and inability to focus on a single project. Effective blues will find opportunities to allow their energy and creative minds to come up with new ideas to help the team, but can still work through more repetitive tasks to be functional on their team.
How Blues Are Motivated
Blues are motivated by opportunities to be expressive, creative, and to have fun on the job. Blues gain energy from being with others, and do well in group projects and meetings. Blues enjoy taking on new challenges, trying new things, and stepping outside of their comfort zone. Because of their high energy, leaders often find that motivating them with their own energy is quite effective.
As a leader, think about ways to keep your Blue team members engaged, keep things fresh, and present ideas to break up tedium. Always turn to your Blues when you need to brainstorm to foster their creative impulses. As a Blue, use your energy to motivate your fellow team members, and you'll find yourself in a more energetic atmosphere as a whole, which should boost your own motivation.
How Blues Lead Teams
Blues make for strong leaders, due to their natural ability to socialize and get along with many different personalities. Their high energy and sense of fun can set the stage for them to lead by example and work with their team closely, and effectively. Team members see the energy and enthusiasm of their Blue leader, that energy becomes infectious, and now you have a highly motivated team with a charismatic leader. Blues can also focus on long term vision for their team, and feed new ideas for their teams to implement.
Blue leaders can falter if they allow themselves to become bored and unproductive. They can also struggle when ironing out the details of their project plans, as they tend to focus on the big picture, rather than on the individual pieces. Blues can overcome their difficulty with details by working with Greens to make their plans more cohesive, using their natural inclination to collaborate to overcome this weakness.
The best way for Blue leaders to stay focused is to remember that their team is counting on them: Blues work best when they're fighting for their team, so keep your team's needs at the forefront of your mind and you won't go too far wrong.
I knew who I wanted to interview for our Blue candidate: Ivey, Portland Team Leader. Ivey's energy level is so infectious that I felt jazzed up and ready to take on my day after interviewing with her for just a few short minutes! Ivey talks about how she's been able to successfully channel her Blue-ness below.
Ivey on the left!
1. What blue characteristics are strongest in you?
I think I'm definitely more bubbly than most people can handle most of the time! My voice is pretty high volume, my body language is the biggest, but I've made that be very advantageous for me in my interpersonal relationships! Whenever Taelor [Portland City Coordinator] tells us about something new or fun, I'm the person getting everyone else in the room more excited about it. When I'm working, especially when I'm training people, I spend most of my time singing and dancing.
2. How does it affect the way you're motivated?
I don't necessarily have the competition thing that Reds have. I do care a lot about the charities we support, the way Yellows do, but if I focus on that too much, thinking about how hard poverty hits the lives of the children we're trying to help, it brings me down and brings down my energy. I have to have fun, enjoy what I'm doing, and have a good time, or my energy dips and I will not be successful.
3. How does it affect the way you lead?
Being very energetic, it helps a lot to infuse how excited I am into other people. I let people see how happy I am and that gets them excited. It works really well with other Blues too, and the excitement I feel gets other people feeling confident. People say that when they see how excited I am to see them successful is what motivates them to move forward, and I love that!
4. What's your second strongest color?
Yellow, hands down. Outside of work, I'm definitely more yellow. When it comes to the job, and my energy, I'm much more blue. I think the combination is one that really works. My yellow allows me to have compassion for the kids we help, my blue gives me the energy to see success and get them what they need.
5. Any advice for being successful for other Blues?
Know your own motivations, know how to control your energy (I love singing and dancing, but I know that sometimes I need to cap it to make sure I still do my job!) Know where your energy is, know how you get excited, and understand that not everyone is going to be as pumped up as you are, but that's ok.
Thanks Ivey! In summary, Blues lead with their heart, and their love of their colleagues, and that's a strength, lean into it! Balance that energy and enthusiasm with focus, and you'll go far. We'll return next week with our final post, on Yellows!
Ivey is always looking to have fun with new team members! If you're interested in representing fantastic charities with a great team, you can follow our career opportunities here.