· 5 min read

Aim to be between Type A and B



Photo by Glenn Diaz on Unsplash

What are the benefits of having different personalities?

Humans come in man shapes and sized and varied personalities. It’s not possible to run the world with just one. We need a different mixture of each.

In 1 situation, one personality works best. In another situation, another personality works best.

There are many ways to categorize personality. A few I know are:

  1. Myers Briggs Personality Assement
  2. Big 5
  3. Dark Triad
  4. Type A and Type B

This post is going to talk about Type A and Type B. There are style of work related classifications.

What is Type A?

Type A personality is the one that works hard non-stop. They are well organized and can get high amount of productivity done is a really short time.

But Type A works at its best only in a controlled environment. They are control freaks. If the environment is not under control. They will not just work badly but get demotivated. This further creates a loop of reasons for bad work. At its worst, their tendency to be way too perfectionistic backfires. Perfectionism can make people hard to get started.

The real world is rarely well structured and controlled. Everything is random and some things happen for random reasons. In this environment, the one who thrives should be able to adapt to different circumstances. Learn skills and move forward.

What is Type B?

Type Bs are laid back. There are the ones that are late and still believe they can get everything done. This chill relaxes but get things done.

They aren’t perfectionistic. When they produce work, what they produce might be --- for lack of a better work --- tatti. And therefore they might produce a lot of debt while they work. This means they have to come back and rework.

The good thing is they have a very very high output. That output comprises of multiple small simple things.

Type B are highly adaptable. They learn quickly. Not perfectly but quickly.

Why should one aim to be between Type A and Type B?

Before answering the question, let’s see how Type A and B compare:

Type A: Bad in real world because they look for a controlled environment. Type B: Good in real world because they are much more agile.

Type A: Produce good quality work that doesn’t need rework. Type B: Produce low quality work that often needs rework.

Type A: Produces less overall quantity of work Type B: Produces more overall quality of work.

As we can see, it seems Type A balance Type B and vice a versa. While it’s perfectly nice to have an interdependent relationship with the other type, often many of our journeys are alone.

We ourselves need to keep the balance between producing high-quality work and getting many things done, all while still not having to go back and rework and still adapt to a changing environment.

This may be hard to imagine so here are a few real-life examples from me, a largely Type A as of 2022 Oct 02.

I love high-quality code. And whenever I join a project, it’s very hard at first but as days go on and the coding standards reach a level of perfection, it’s hard for me to leave the project. Developers around me have already started to talk about new technologies or features they are building, but I am still stuck in the past. Looking at that perfect code. And at the same time, I don’t even know what I can improve in that code base now that I feel I am already perfect.

Whenever I jump to a new project, I have the same expectation of high productivity and quality from day one. This demotivates me and makes me go slower than I would like. But as days go by, this project also reaches a good perfect state. When I revisit the previous one, I find improvements I could do there which I learned from this one. I wouldn’t have ever understood that if I hadn’t made the jump. #grateful

How does this relate to the concept of order and chaos?

Type A: Order Type B: Chaos

This comes from Jordan Peterson’s books. The books describe how to stay between Order and Chaos, the two modes where you feel safe and still excited for new possibilities.

How can one stay between Type A and Type B?

I can’t answer for Type B. But for Type A it’s giving up on control. You’ll anyway try to produce high quality. Produce a lot and you’ll find the quality improves over time.

Think like Kanban, pick a task, and move it to completion. Then pick a new task. Aka one task at a time till completion. That should boost your productivity incredible.

Adapt to environments, you may need to learn and face your comfort zones. That’s okay. Think of this in terms of expanding your comfort zone rather than face. The face is such a loaded term.

Reading -> Learning -> Applying is the fastest way to improve quality.

And chill, relax. Nature is random and it’s still perfect :) or else we wouldn’t have been here.


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