In the business world, there are many different ways to be successful. This means that individuals of all personality types are, in theory, able to succeed in completely different ways.

Some people, especially if they’ve spent too much time watching The Office, may take the ‘Dwight Schrute’ approach to business by declaring "we are warriors!" but the more timid and less outspoken business people have the potential to be just as successful as those who like to grab the proverbial bull by the horns, as long as they learn to recognize the respective strengths and weaknesses of their personality type.

Courtesy of Flickr, under creative commons license

Courtesy of Flickr, under creative commons license

In fact, having this sort of self-awareness is crucial for knowing how to match your skillset to the most appropriate tasks for you, ensuring you can climb the corporate ladder and get the pay rises and promotions that you deserve.

We Are Warriors: Know Your Strengths

Sticking with the "we are warriors" theme, Dwight in The Office is hugely successful in his role in Dunder Mifflin’s fictitious office environment because he knows he is a warrior and his strength lies in being a strong, outspoken character. He uses strength of personality and unfailing self-confidence to force his way to the top. This approach has been replicated by a unique business person: Nicolau Villa-Lobos.

Nicolau is a poker player who has found fame, as well as lucrative sponsorship deals, thanks to his “bully” psychology. He is even cited as an example of this personality type in 888poker’s Place in the Pack analysis, which looks at how different personality types succeed in the unique environment of the poker table. Nicolau knows when he can bully his opponents into submission, and he uses this knowledge to devastating effect.

With over 1 million USD in prize money under his belt, all won playing poker, he knows that his bullying personality works, if he uses it wisely. Nicolau is a classic example of a business person (in this case a specialized one) knowing what works and making it count when it comes to big earnings.

This technique may work for Nicolau in the real world, and Dwight in the fictional world, but this is not to say that such a whirlwind of personality is the only way to be a success.

Introvert? Always Rational? Who Cares? You Should

In fact, sometimes it’s not all about who can shout the loudest, and who can dominate ruthlessly in social situations. Whether you label yourself as naturally introverted or you like to adopt a rational approach to business at all times, it still pays to be aware of what personality type you are.

If indeed you are naturally introverted, then knowing that you are not going to be the one to make a big announcement in meetings will help you to own and develop your personality in your own way. If you are a rational personality type, you may not find taking risks the best approach, which can be a blessing as well as a curse depending upon what industry you work in.

Of course, you may well be a totally different character to any of the ones described here, with several different common personalities to compare yourself against, but the key message here is to be self-aware at all times.

Being self-aware and understanding the different personalities in business will help you to work more effectively with your colleagues too. This means that if you can identify your personality type and the ones of those around you, you will stand a far greater chance of succeeding in your office environment.

On a final note, if you happen to be a boss, then being able to explore the personalities of the people you manage will help you to improve your leadership skills, again showing why knowing your personality is an essential requirement for being successful in business.