Low B Profile – Analysis of Low Drives
The Low B profile is a heads-down, analytical profile. A Low B typically does not think out loud or bounce half-formulated ideas off others to finalize their own thought processes, but prefers to internally think a problem through before offering a verbal response. It is a profile that is naturally self-reliant, which prefers to figure out solutions to problems on their own rather than talking it through with others. This doesn’t mean that Low B profiles dislike communicating with friends and co-workers, and in fact, most Low B’s are very good listeners who tend to carefully take in and consider information and opinions proffered before they offer a thoughtful response. But, Low B’s can feel uncomfortable if placed in communication settings which pressure them to provide on-the-spot solutions to new problems or to choose between competing alternatives before being given the opportunity to think the problems through or consider the viability of alternatives to provide the best response. If no ready verbal solution is at hand, a very Low B profile may react or respond to a query or a series of queries with a “blank processing stare” rather than the anticipated verbal response. More pressure by others on the Low B to respond by repeating the query or drawing focus to the silence by filling in the conversational gap is not productive. It is preferable to allow the Low B an opportunity to complete the processing before eliciting a response or to simply set a later time for their response. (E.g., I would like to think about that further and will get back to you later today with a complete response).
Long-term face-to-face communication for Low B’s can be an exhaustive process. If placed at the focal point of communication at a booth in a trade show, a host at an open house or an evening of social networking – the Low B profile typically feels drained by the end of the day. This is in contrast to the High B profile that gains energy from those kinds of social interactions and who will telephone, actively seek out, or personally connect with others to prolong the communication and revel in relating the interactions of the day to others.
If you are managing introverted employees with Low B profiles, please consider the following:
1) Allow your Low B profiles an opportunity to “recharge” their batteries with some alone or quiet time following long periods of face-to-face communication. It will be welcomed by the Low B profiles and will present an excellent opportunity to put their analytical, problem-solving skills to use by focusing on problems rather than more social interactions.
2) Is the physical layout of your work environment conducive to Low B profiles? Open office spaces which require constant communication and interaction among all workers are less attractive to Low B profiles. A layout which separates Low B profiles from the hustle and bustle of the remainder of the office may increase Low B productivity.
3) Are you taking advantage of their penchant for preparation? To avoid being caught off guard when discussing a new subject or topic, many Low B’s have a habit of preparing to anticipate unexpected questions that may be raised or new topics that may be discussed. If you are managing an introverted employee with a Low B profile you may aid in this preparation and take pressure off the profile by circulating a written agenda or giving a preview of the topics to be discussed prior to a meeting. That pre-meeting preparation will provide the Low B profile with an opportunity for prior reflection and facilitate greater Low B input when the topic is formally presented at the meeting for full consideration.
Improving communication between Low B and High B profiles can be facilitated and should be a priority in every organization.