team technology

Working out your team role

Part 2 (continued from part 1)

There are various methods to help you to work out your team role:

Inner or outer world products

Of the eight MTR-i team roles, four contribute 'inner world' products and four contribute 'outer world' products.

Inner world products are transformations in the inner world of ideas, thoughts, information and explanations. Curators clarify information; Scientists produce explanations; Innovators come up with new ideas or perspectives; and Crusaders give important to ideas, information and beliefs.

Outer world products are transformations in the outer world of people, things and situations. Coaches build harmony and agreement between people; Sculptors take action to bring things to fruition; Explorers change situations to uncover new potential; and Conductors introduce organisation and structure into the way things are done.

You can narrow down your possible team roles from eight to four by deciding whether the contribution you make to the team is primarily in terms of inner-world products or outer-world products. The following table shows some examples of products in each world, and which team roles are associated with inner or outer world products:

Inner world Outer world
Team Roles Products (changes to…) Products (changes to…) Team Roles

Crusader

Innovator

Curator

Scientist
Ideas
Information
Beliefs
Analysis
Observation
Insight
Understanding
Perspectives
Priorities
People
Things
Situations
Organisation
Action
Surroundings
Events
Interactions
Developments
Coach

Explorer

Sculptor

Conductor

Products based on experience vs products based on potential

The dichotomy of products based on 'experience vs potential' applies to just four of the eight team roles: Sculptor and Curator products are based on applying proven and known experience; Explorer and Innovator products are based on the untapped and unquantified potential or possibilities of something that is new and unproven.

Experience-based team roles (Sculptor and Curator) utilise what is already known, based on proven experience or what can be deduced from that experience, to create their products. Sculptors utilise their experience and knowledge to make changes to the outer world of people, things and situations. When presented with a new situation, they will take action, using tools and techniques that experience tells them will work - if a technique has worked in the past, then they will use it again. Curators utilise their experience and knowledge to clarify information and ideas. When presented with something new, they will relate it to what they already know, and acquire more information (using terms with which they are already familiar) to help clarify their observations.

Potential-based team roles (Explorer and Innovator) constantly seek to develop new possibilities. When presented with a situation, they produce something that has greater potential. Explorers explore this potential in the outer world of people, things and situations. When presented with a situation, even if there is a technique that has worked in the past, then it can be bettered, and they may change it to see if it can yield even better results. Innovators create potential in the inner world of ideas and information. When presented with something new, their interest is in taking new and alternative perspectives; or they generate new ideas that have more potential than the original idea/information that was presented.

The table below shows the characteristics of the two types of team roles and some examples of their products.

Experience-based Potential-based
Team Roles Characteristics of products Characteristics of products Team Roles
Sculptor
(outer world products)
Known techniques
Taking action on urgent matters
Making something recognisable
Trying new things
Changing things to be better
Doing things differently
Explorer
(outer world products)
Curator
(inner world products)
Clear information
Clarified in terms of what is known
Related to experience
Innovative ideas
Alternatives to what is known
Generates new perspectives
Innovator
(inner world products)

Products based on structure vs value

The dichotomy of products based on 'structure vs value' applies to just four of the eight team roles: Conductor, Scientist, Coach and Crusader. Conductor and Scientist team roles are based on producing structure and organisation; Coach and Crusader team roles are based on giving value and importance.

Structure-based team roles make logical connections and seek to establish what is true or 'correct'. They then introduce structure and organisation based on what they have found to be true or correct. Conductors introduce structure into the outer world of people and things, identifying the correct way to do things and ensuring things happen in an organised fashion. When presented with a new situation, they will determine the correct process that needs to be used to deal with it, and then implement that process. Scientists introduce structure into the inner world of ideas and information, forming explanations of how things work based on what they have found to be true. Scientists seek to understand the full complexity of new situations, analysing them and developing mental models to demonstrate the relationship between cause and effect.

Value-based team roles seek to create harmony and assign importance so that things 'feel right'. Coaches seek to build harmony in the outer world of people, things and situations. They try to build harmony, forge agreements and build team spirit. When presented with a new situation, they will try to overcome the conflict that exists and find a consensus amongst those involved, in which everyone feels involved. Crusaders build harmony in the inner world of ideas and information, which means that they ensure important ideas are given due attention. When presented with a new situation, they identify those ideas or information that have the greatest value and stress what is important.

Structure-based Value-based
Team Roles Characteristics of products Characteristics of products Team Roles
Conductor
(outer world products)
Organisation of situations
Use of correct processes
Standardisation
Team spirit and motivation
Agreement and harmony
Concern for others
Coach
(outer world products)
Scientist
(inner world products)
Analysis of what is true or consistent
Logical explanation
Mental models that explain things
Sense of priority
Focus on what is important
Adherence to convictions
Crusader
(inner world products)

Working out your team role

Your team role is determined by the main products that you contribute to the team. Everyone can and does perform each team role, to some degree. However, there are often one or two team roles that you perform more than any other.

To determine your team role, read the following summary table to decide your main contribution (of soft products) to the team:

Team Role

Summary of Products

Coach

Building harmony/agreement in the team

Crusader

Giving importance of ideas/beliefs/information

Explorer

Exploration of potential in people/situations

Innovator

Imagination of new ideas or perspectives

Sculptor

Bringing things to fruition, through action

Curator

Clarity of information and ideas

Conductor

Introducing organisation into the way things are done

Scientist

Forming explanation of how things work

Longer descriptions can be found at the bottom of this page.

Comparison with your personality preferences

To understand your personality preferences, read Working out your Myers Briggs type.

Your team role reflects the behaviours and attitudes that you are currently adopting within your work team. Those behaviours and attitudes may be similar to your preferences, or they may be very different. Your behaviour in the team is not determined solely by your preferences - there may be other factors in play, such as:

In general, the closer your work role to your preferences, the more likely it is that you will enjoy work, though this is not a definitive rule. The greater the disparity between your team role and personality preference, the more likely it is that you may be finding the work stressful (also not a definitive rule). The tables below show (a) the closest types for each team role and (b) the closest team roles for each type:

Closest Types for each team role

Team Role Closest Types Next closest More distant Furthest Types
Coach ESFJ, ENFJ ISFJ, INFJ
ESFP, ENFP
INFP, ISFP
ESTP, ENTP
INTP, ISTP, INTJ
ISTJ, ESTJ, ENTJ
Crusader ISFP, INFP ESFP, ENFP
ISFJ, INFJ
ESFJ, ENFJ
ISTJ, INTJ
ESTJ, ENTJ, ISTP
INTP, ENTP, ESTP
Explorer ENFP, ENTP INFP, INTP
ENFJ, ENTJ
INFJ, INTJ
ESFJ, ESTJ
ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTP
ESFP, ISFP, ISTP
Innovator INFJ, INTJ ENFJ, ENTJ
INFP, INTP
ENFP, ENTP
ISTP, ISFP
ESFP, ESTP, ISTJ
ISFJ, ESFJ, ESTJ
Sculptor ESTP, ESFP ISFP, ISTP
ESFJ, ESTJ
ISFJ, ISTJ
ENFJ, ENTJ
INTJ, INFJ, ENTP
ENFP, INFP, INTP
Curator ISFJ, ISTJ ESFJ, ESTJ
ISFP, ISTP
ESFP, ESTP
INTP, INFP
ENFP, ENTP, INTJ
INFJ, ENFJ, ENTJ
Conductor ESTJ, ENTJ ISTJ, INTJ
ESTP, ENTP
INTP, ISTP
ESFP, ENFP
INFP, ISFP, INFJ
ISFJ, ESFJ, ENFJ
Scientist ISTP, INTP ESTP, ENTP
ISTJ, INTJ
ESTJ, ENTJ
ESFJ, INFJ
ESFJ, ENFJ, ISFP
INFP, ENFP, ESFP

Closest Team Roles for each type

Type

Closest
Team Role
Next closest More distant Furthest
Team Roles
ENFJ Coach Explorer, Innovator Crusader, Sculptor Conductor, Scientist, Curator
ESFJ Coach Sculptor, Curator Crusader, Explorer Conductor, Scientist, Innovator
INFP Crusader Explorer, Innovator Coach, Curator Conductor, Scientist, Sculptor
ISFP Crusader Sculptor, Curator Coach, Innovator Conductor, Scientist, Explorer
ENTP Explorer Conductor, Scientist Innovator, Coach Sculptor, Curator, Crusader
ENFP Explorer Coach, Crusader Innovator, Conductor Sculptor, Curator, Scientist
INFJ Innovator Coach, Crusader Explorer, Scientist Sculptor, Curator, Conductor
INTJ Innovator Conductor, Scientist Explorer, Crusader Sculptor, Curator, Coach
ESFP Sculptor Coach, Crusader Curator, Conductor Explorer, Innovator, Scientist
ESTP Sculptor Conductor, Scientist Curator, Coach Explorer, Innovator, Crusader
ISFJ Curator Coach, Crusader Sculptor, Scientist Explorer, Innovator, Conductor
ISTJ Curator Conductor, Scientist Sculptor, Crusader Explorer, Innovator, Coach
ESTJ Conductor Sculptor, Curator Scientist, Explorer Coach, Crusader, Innovator
ENTJ Conductor Explorer, Innovator Scientist, Sculptor Coach, Crusader, Curator
ISTP Scientist Sculptor, Curator Conductor, Innovator Coach, Crusader, Explorer
INTP Scientist Explorer, Innovator Conductor, Curator Coach, Crusader, Sculptor

(Technical information for advanced MBTI users: the above tables are inferred from our research on the orientation of the functions: that the dominant and tertiary functions are clearly oriented in the preferred direction; the auxiliary and inferior are roughly equally split between both orientations; and the tertiary in the opposite direction is the lowest scoring of all the function-attitudes).


Team Role Descriptions

coach.gif - 18529 Bytes

COACH

Coaches try to create harmony in the world around them, by building rapport with people, creating a positive team atmosphere, looking after people's welfare, motivating people and/or providing a service to the satisfaction of others. They value people's contributions, seek to develop the role that others play, and invest a lot of effort in building positive relationships. They try to overcome differences of opinion and find ways in which the team can agree. crusader.gif - 34713 Bytes

CRUSADER

Crusaders give importance to particular thoughts, ideas, or beliefs. They are value driven, and in a team discussion they often bring a sense of priority that is derived from their strong convictions. They seize upon and emphasise ideas or thoughts that have the greatest import, bringing them to the fore and stressing their significance. They assess the inherent value or importance of new ideas, focusing on those about which they feel most strongly. explorer.gif - 23408 Bytes

EXPLORER

Explorers promote exploration of new and better ways of doing things, to uncover hidden potential in people, things or situations. They break new ground, and are often looking one step beyond the current situation to pursue unexplored avenues, until all the possibilities have been exhausted. Explorers often challenge the status quo and experiment with the introduction of change, to see if the situation can be improved or new potential uncovered. innovator.gif - 11466 Bytes

INNOVATOR

Innovators use their imagination to create new and different ideas and perspectives. They observe the world around them, then use their imaginations to consider what they have observed from a number of different perspectives, and dream up new ideas and insights. Innovators often produce radical solutions to problems, develop long-term vision and demonstrate an apparent understanding of what cannot be clearly known. sculptor.gif - 33244 Bytes

SCULPTOR

Sculptors bring things to fruition by getting things done, and getting them done now! They are very action-oriented, dealing with whatever tasks the current situation presents, and spurring others into action as well. They make use of their experience and utilise tools or processes of which they already have knowledge. They try to have an immediate impact on things, injecting a sense of urgency, and aiming to achieve clear goals and tangible results. curator.gif - 18937 Bytes

CURATOR

Curators bring clarity to the inner world of information, ideas and understanding. They listen, ask questions and absorb information, so that in their mind's eye they can achieve as clear a picture or understanding as is possible. They expand their knowledge and collection of experiences, and also look to the future by envisaging clear goals and clear pathways to achievement of those goals. The focus on clarity also brings greater attention to detail. conductor.gif - 22657 Bytes

CONDUCTOR

Conductors introduce organisation and a logical structure into the way things are done. They organise and systematise the world around them, establishing appropriate plans, identifying and implementing the correct procedures, and then endeavouring to make sure they are followed. They try to ensure that roles and responsibilities are properly defined and that appropriate resources or skills are available to undertake the work assigned. scientist.gif - 23895 Bytes

SCIENTIST

Scientists provide explanation of how and why things happen. They bring structure and organisation into the inner world of ideas and understanding. They analyse things, formulating hypotheses and explanations of how they function, and gather evidence to assess how true those explanations are. They produce mental models that replicate how particular aspects of the world works, and they try to understand the full complexity of any situation.



Take the test
Discover a better future

©2013 Team Technology. Further articles/resources that may be of interest include: Personality Test, Personality Type Descriptions, Myers Briggs overview, The Basics of Team Building, What Career is Right for Me?, and Career ideas.