Personality Traits That Derail Your Career

There are some character traits you need to do well at a certain job.

For example, if you work in a creative industry, you need to be imaginative.

If you work with data, it pays to be meticulous.

These are good traits. They help you succeed.

But, let me tell you this, these good traits that you have, they all have a “dark side.”

Depending on the situation, it can work against you.

Now, I remember reading study, it was made by two psychologists, Robert and Joyce Hogan.

And in that study, they wrote about 11 qualities and their “dark side.”

And, turns out, almost everyone has at least 3 of these “dark side” qualities.

Okay, so, let’s go over these. What are these qualities, what is their dark side?

So the first thing, being bold.

It’s a good thing to be, I mean, if you’re assertive, if you’re confident, you can get what you want and influence decision makers who can advance your career.

But then, here’s the dark side, when you’re too bold, you might have this tendency to ignore feedback. And to your coworkers, it looks like arrogance.

Alright, second quality, being cautious.

Now, when you take your time in making decisions, that can be good for avoiding risks. Not so much for innovating.

Third quality, being colorful.

Being colorful helps at getting yourself heard and connecting with people.

But then when you need to listen to others, that’s when this quality can backfire.

Okay, now the next one is, diligence.

Diligence is always great to have at work, especially when you need to pay attention to details.

But here’s how it can work against you, you see, in the long-run, diligence can lead to extreme perfectionism. And that can slow you down.

Next quality, being dutiful.

It’s just so easy to work with a dutiful person, right? They just want to please everyone.

So if you have this trait, people would find it easy to get along with you,

But when it’s time to step up and get ahead, you might be left behind.

Alright, next is, being excitable.

People with enthusiasm just have a way of getting people on board. They collaborate well. And it’s great to have them in a team.

But then, this quality makes you unpredictable. Emotionally unpredictable.

And no one appreciates it when someone throws a fit at work.

Now, the next quality is being imaginative.

Imagination is great. I mean, it gives you new ideas and all.

But the dark side is this, when you work in a more traditional field, like finance or risk management, it’s no good.

Your tendency to think outside the box’s not gonna put you in a good position.

Alright, next we have, being leisurely.

Now these people, they’re cooperative, it’s not that they want to please others, but it’s more like they don’t wanna speak up.

Usually, these people are passive-aggressive.

They might be cooperative, but eventually, they’re hard to trust.

Next quality is being mischievous.

These are the risk-takers. They act on impulse.

They have this “high risk, high reward” way of thinking. Which isn’t exactly the best idea when it comes to making decisions that affects the entire company.

Next quality, being reserved.

This is good if you need to be objective in giving feedback

But at the same time, this quality stops you from engaging in meetings, it stops you from bringing up your ideas.

And finally, we’ve reached the last one, being skeptical.

Now, thinking with the black hat is good, especially if your job needs you to assess risks or make arguments.

But, obviously, you’d probably have a hard time supporting new ideas if you’re always focused on the negative.

Alright, so now we’re done talking about the dark side qualities.

But before we move on, I want to tell you about this article of deniz sasal about how he rose from his failure.

This guy has a amazing!

And now, if you don’t learn how to deal with these traits, it’s gonna ruin your career.

But take note, you don’t have to get rid of these qualities, you just have to learn how to control them.

You see, first of all, these traits aren’t exactly bad traits. They just have a “dark side.”

Second, it’s very hard to change your main personality traits. At your age, you’ve already built your personality.

And, I think I’ve mentioned this is my other article, your personality is like a Jenga tower.

If you remove the qualities that make it up, it’s gonna derail your character.

So, anyway, let me now share with you how you can deal with this.

Let’s talk about how you can manage your negative traits so that your career won’t suffer.

Alright, so first thing you need to know, it’s all about self-awareness.

You see, managing these weaknesses has to start from there.

So, you could consider taking these into account on your next performance review.

Another way is to ask friends, family, or people you hang out with outside work. I mean, it’s easier to see the dark side when you’re not working.

So, once you’ve figured out what your dark side traits are, here’s the next thing to do.

Find out the situations where the dark side traits come out.

For example, if you’re reserved, that quality works in your favor if you’re working alone under pressure.

But then, when you need to collaborate and brainstorm, then the dark side might come out, it’s gonna make you look insensitive.

Your coworkers will get this impression that you just don’t wanna communicate with them.

Another example, I had this coworker, and his dark side trait is being dutiful. Very cooperative guy.

He finished his work on time, did what he had to do.

So when he had to take on a leadership role for a project, he just struggled with giving negative feedback to the other coworkers.

So in that situation, his good quality worked against him.

Alright, so being aware of what triggers your dark side qualities, it’s gonna make it easier for you to control them.

Eventually, when you’re fully in control of those traits, you can stop the dark side from showing.

See, this way, you’re not changing your personality, you’re just learning how to control your tendencies.

So, for example, this coworker of mine who was dutiful.

Here’s what he did.

In his next project that he led, he encouraged feedback.

At the start of meetings, he’d begin by asking what he can do better.

And in return, he did the same for the other coworkers. He gave them feedback.

You see, this practice helped him be more assertive.

So, here, you can see that these behavioral changes, they turn into a habit

And these changes, they’re gonna help you take control of your personality weaknesses.