Introduction to workstyles  

Workstyles are scientifically proven way to match an individual to an assignment, based on personal characteristics. It is intended to be used as a complement to skills matching, and will provide a match score that indicates how well the individuals’ characteristics match the requirements of the assignment. The new workstyles are based on the same empirical model as the old ones. 

The new model contains seven workstyles compared to the previous 16, which covers the personal characteristics that are related to success in different parts of working life. These are Achievement orientation (Doer), Social Influence (Leader), Interpersonal Orientation (Team player), Adjustment (Cool head), Conscientiousness (Diligence), Independence (Independence), and Practical Intelligence (Problem solver). In the illustration below describes how the old workstyles model (white boxes) are related to the new ones. 

Achievement orientation is about establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks, persistence in the face of obstacles, and a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. 

Social influence is about having a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction. 

Interpersonal Orientation is about being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude, being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job, and preferring to work with others rather than alone being personally connected with others on the job. 

Adjustment is about maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. It’s also about accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations and being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. 

Conscientiousness is about being reliable, responsible, dependable, fulfilling obligations,  being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks, as well as being honest and ethical. 

Independence is about being comfortable developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. 

Practical Intelligence is about creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems, and analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems. 

Why change it? 

The assessments used required quite a lot of effort from the consultants, and was not helpful to keep high speed in the process. 

The ambition with this change is to establish a workstyles-model that facilitates trust, builds credibility, improves client satisfaction through involvement and expectation management, and creates opportunities for more in-depth client interaction. 

What’s been improved? 

The key benefits with the new model is it’s intuitiveness and effectiveness. It provides a clear answer to how well a consultant matches an assignment based on personal characteristics. It is easy to learn, easy to discuss, and does not require much effort from the consultants or clients. That means it will provide an opportunity to use workstyles as a part of the screening process without losing speed in the process. 

The main reason to use workstyles as a part of a screening process is that it provides valuable information about how the consultant will be perceived by the client at an assignment. This creates value both through better matching, but also by being able to be used for expectation management. If a consultant is very independent and not very socially oriented, that could be described to a client to give them a heads up that will prevent unpleasant surprises when they get to know the consultant. 

So, the reason to use workstyles is that it is an easy and effective way to match a consultant based on personal characteristics, and it helps to build dialogue and trust with the client.