The Enneagram is not a crystal ball. Often, one of the biggest pushbacks against the Enneagram -and other personality typing systems- goes something like this:
“I just don’t want to be put in a box.”
People don’t want to be labeled. They don’t want to feel like you’re trying to predict their every move or decide how they feel or what they want without them having a say in it. I know I’ve felt this way, and you probably have too. And while I think other typing systems, such as Myers-Briggs, DISC, and Strengthsfinders all have value and are great tools in certain contexts, I believe that this objection is actually a place where the Enneagram rises above the rest.
Think of the Enneagram as an x-ray rather than a crystal ball. An x-ray looks at the past, rather than at the future. While some may use it like a magical, future-seeing orb, I believe the best use of the Enneagram system is to look backward, not forwards.
Each of us is a product of our past: our joys, our wounds, our families, our experiences, and on and on. Like it or not, we are who we have always been becoming. However, most of us are woefully unaware of how our past has shaped us. We are the way we are because of a long series of why’s. The Enneagram can help us discover those why’s and to identify where we have begun to believe things that are not completely true. And like an x-ray, when you identify a problem, you can develop a plan to fix it.
Now, this isn’t just for you. Think about others for a second. Think about your team at work, or your boss, or your employees. One of the great benefits of using the Enneagram at your office is that you can begin to actually know one another and to develop the oft-forgotten and greatly-lost skill of empathy. We can also learn to communicate better with each other because we can begin to speak a language that we each understand. When I know what motivates you, or when you know how my past has shaped me, we can communicate in a new, deep, and meaningful way.
How many times has communication been a problem at your office? How many times have expectations been unclear or unmet? What if the individuals in your office actually began to function as a team and were able to communicate clearly? Evrgrn specializes in Enneagram Training, including practical tools and habits that can help build an office environment where your team can thrive in every season.