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What to do: nines

Many different teams are dominated by a specific personality type. If you have multiple Enneagram Nines on your team, this article is for you!

So how do you know if you have a bunch of Nines on your team? If your team hasn't looked into the enneagram and you don't know for sure, here are a few questions to help you determine for yourself:

  • Does your team have trouble making quick decisions?

  • Does your team have trouble sticking to decisions once they're made?

  • Do multiple people on your team make good mediators?

  • Is your team good at seeing many different perspectives?

  • Do multiple team members seem to have trouble sharing their opinions?

  • Is your team highly encouraging?

If you answered yes to 4 or more of those questions, odds are you've got several Nines on your team.

Nines can really be a gift to a team. They bring cool heads and calmness to a team. Their great superpower is Perspective: the ability to see everyone's perspective and consider it. They make incredible mediators between people in conflict and they are usually very aware of the lessons of the past.

On the other hand, though, Nines can be very slow to share their opinions or to take action. This can frustrate other members of the team easily. They also try very hard to avoid conflict, so they often feel like they need to preface every statement with an apology. This habit makes everything take much longer, and when they need to extend a real apology, it can come across as ingenuine. 

Here are a couple of great tips about what to do with the Nines on your team in order to succeed together.

First, Nines need time to process before being put on the spot. Make sure to send out a brief agenda before a meeting. This way they can put their thoughts together ahead of time and be more ready to participate in the group conversation. 

Second, if you want a Nine's opinion on something, ask them about the past. Have they seen anything like this before? What do they know about how other teams have approached similar situations before? They don't want to cause conflict in the present, but the past is usually a pretty safe thing for them to talk about.

Finally, when Nines can be great at leading meetings where it is important that everyone voice their opinions. They are usually very encouraging in these situations, so they can make others feel comfortable sharing their thoughts. 

Leading Nines, like any number, can be challenging. But when done well, they are a critical and impactful part of any team. A healthy Nine can help your team thrive in every season!


Are you an Enneagram Nine? Or do you have several Nines on your team? We would love to hear your thoughts on this article. Reach out to us on social media or email us directly at 


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