Fruit In Disguise
The trouble with any kind of behavioural or personality profiling is that the natural tendency to label someone, whether it is an ENTJ, a Red, an Eagle or an Apple.
The secret is that while we can have some fun with it laughing at different traits, the labelling simply helps identify different types of behaviour often displayed by a whole range of different people.
The danger in saying - OMG- she's an Apple, watch her! - lies in the fact that no one fits into one little box. We are a complex mix of more than 30,000 different genes and it's an insult to our intelligence to try and do so. My Fruit profiling is unashamedly pop psychology, designed to be run in a short period of time with knowledge made accessible by a simple, blameless language. It's constructed to be used as a guideline to identifying behaviours. (For more sophisticated profliing systems check out the likes of Belbin, run by the talented team at Sabre Corporate Development)
Tasha is a lovely girl. Everybody likes her. She's a great hostess. She's funny. Nothing seems to faze her and she's got two perfect children. (Bitch). Super chilled she throws together a casual dinner party and doesn't care if the house isn't perfect. You relax around Tasha because she's so inoffensive. Tasha exhibits a bunch of Banana traits and you speak Banana so all good. Until she's not happy with things around her. And then Tasha has not only a surge of impatience but a tongue that will tear shreds off you. For the unsuspecting, this comes as a shock.
Megan has a potential new client. They get on like a house on fire. They had their first meeting over a glass of wine, they laugh all the time, they never stop talking and sharing adventure stories. Megan knows this Mango will be fun to work with, and won't quibble about the cost. So she was more than a little surprised when her client started playing hard ball in the negotiation game. That's not a Mango trait!
While learning about different types of behaviour proves invaluable in helping you understand and connect with others, there is danger in putting people into one little box. Remember, we're all a glorious Fruit Salad; it's the behaviour to identify, not the person.
Lynne Schinella is a conference speaker, trainer, coach and author. Her fruit keynote, Working with People You Just Don't Get, draws on the classic four personality types and explores why we’re different, how we're different and what we can do about it.
Her book Bite Me! and other do's and don't of dealing with our differences provides a more comprehensive profiling tool. We get to take a reluctant look at ourselves and why we don’t make the most of our relationships with others.