Personality is the first driver how we behave in certain environments, and shape how we react. But having the self awareness who we are, we can push beyond personality!
As a ESFP normally I bring my passion to the room, and connect with people very easily to bring a good environment to the conversation. Nevertheless, with my strong S, I am told that I can be too detailed, and jump with different thoughts making the storyline not clear.
There was a situation which I was presenting a follow up of an important project to our leadership. The leadership team were represented by 4 men, and it was invited a peer which the role was mainly create awareness of the extended team, also a man. So I was the only woman and the youngest.
As I know myself, and most of the leaders want to get to the point, and the big picture with very concise and clear examples, I create a presentation which I rehearsal with my boss before. So I was feeling prepared and confident.
When I started to present, and coming to the key points for the update, and giving the specific examples, I have my peer stating: “What Anna wants to say is…”. The first time actually I appreciated, but after the second, third time, I started to feel irritated, and a bit upset.
Using my extrovert side, I deep breath and started to build my speech more with questions, to make sure the audience was with me and understanding my point, not giving the opportunity for that my peer to keep repeating what I was saying.
There was another attempt after I had a great feedback from our Senior leader to my boss about that meeting, and I also met with my peer, giving him feedback about this behavior, He apologize, but told me that I was perceived too assertive and perhaps a bit bossy when he said “What Anna wants to say was…” , and I answer back, “No, I’m sorry that is not the point. What I was saying was….”.
I am sure if it was a man he wouldn’t even dare to feel I was being bossy and didn’t appreciated the constant reiteration of my speech.
I believe this level of assertiveness is good, so I believe it is keep doing. What do you think?