In Their Own Words (Part 4)

change of plansHere are the responses from the nine people on last year’s Enneagram Panel to the third of the four situations they were presented with. (Read the previous three posts for more of their responses.)

SITUATION: You’re getting ready to leave the office late on Friday afternoon when the supervisor of your department discovers several errors in a report a client is expecting to have in hand the following Monday morning. Everyone else has gone home. So your supervisor expects you to work late even though you didn’t make those errors and you have plans yourself for that evening. How would you feel? What would you think? And what would you do and say?

Type 1: I would be put out. I’d be annoyed. But I’d likely comply, and I would make arrangements to get to my plans late feeling like those people would be more forgiving than the person who really wants the job done. Oh, and then the other thing I thought is that I might not do a perfect job. Someone else made the mistakes. I might not do as good a job as I would if it would be my piece of work. I don’t really feel like I have a buy-in, so I might not be perfect. And I would try to get out as soon as possible, so I’d do it as efficiently as I could so I could get on with the other plans.

Type 2: I’m not as nice as some 2s, I bet. I would feel annoyed. That would be my first reaction. What would I think? Well, basically that it’s somewhat unfair but I would have the expectations the supervisor would also be staying and we would work on it together. And if that was not happening, then I would truly be annoyed. What do you say and do? Depends on how I was asked. “Oh, gee, it would be such a big help if you would stay. I would really appreciate it.” That I’d get sucked right into. A lot of praise. If I were asked to do this, I would definitely want credit and recognition that I had done this for other people. That’s the selfish part of being a 2.

Type 3: I’d be extremely put out. And I’d be critical of the incompetent work. Why does someone do incompetent work in the first place? And now why am I stuck dealing with it? I’m trying to think how I can get out of this. So I’d be planning what I can do to get out of this. What do you do and say? I try to explain my situation. I already have commitments. I’m unable to change them. And try to think of what are some other options there.

Type 4: I think this would depend on my relationship with the supervisor. Does she often do this kind of thing? Has she supported me in the past? Is there a good alternative for someone making the corrections over the weekend—preferably the person who made the errors. Or even the supervisor herself? If not, I would tell her that I had plans for the evening, but I would be willing to make the corrections over the weekend if no one else could do it, if I didn’t have plans for the weekend. If getting it done over the weekend doesn’t work, whether I would stay late would depend upon why I couldn’t have done it over the weekend and my relationship with the supervisor. Do I value my job enough to cancel my plans and stay at work? I would think it was unfair, but if I valued my job and liked the supervisor, and if I could cancel my plans for the evening without too much trouble and too many repercussions, I would probably stay.

Type 5: I’d just do it. It would be no big deal. I like to work. I like to think. And the bonus would be that this is after hours and everyone would be gone.

Type 6: So how would I feel? Trapped, frustrated. So then, I’m hardworking and loyal. I would say, “OK, let’s see; how long is this going to take me?” I would reschedule my plans.

Type 7: First I’d be the supervisor, and I’d deal with it. But I would be really, really, really irritated and really pissed off. If it’s a rare occurrence, and I had plans for Friday night, I would come in over the weekend, and I would do it. But if it was a regular issue, I wouldn’t do it. I’d tell the supervisor, “No, I can’t, I’m leaving”—whatever. I would come up with some reason why I absolutely could not do it, and that he or she would have to call the person back in to correct the work.

Type 8: I think this was a tough one partly because you want to keep your job. So I would definitely be vocal about it, and tell them, “Look I already have plans.” But I think when it came down to it, I would do it. I want the job; whatever recognition came with it is fine. But it’s the business world; it needs to get done.

Type 9: I would be really, really pissed off but they would probably never know that. I think I would think, “Wow, does anybody do their job?” And then I would just get it done, and get out of there. And I would walk out thinking, “You so owe me—and you will pay.” That applies both to the person who made the mistakes and to the supervisor—big time!

How do you think YOU would respond to this situation? Would you change your plans and stay late to fix someone else’s mistake? Would you be resentful of your supervisor or the person who made the mistakes—or both of them?

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One response to “In Their Own Words (Part 4)

  1. I’m a 6. I would feel irritated and resentful that I’m being asked to stay late for something that is not my work. I think a lot of what I would feel and do would depend on the relationship I had with my supervisor. Is s/he staying behind to work on this project as well? Are we working together on fixing the report? I would probably try and convince my supervisor to get a hold of the employee who made the errors to try and fix it over the weekend.

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