I See Your True Colors (by Cara)

By Cara McDaniel, Floricane Project Coordinator

INSIGHTS Discovery

Cool Blue. Earth Green. Sunshine Yellow. Fiery Red. How do these colors relate to better team dynamics and organizational success? Through the Insights Discovery learning system, of course.

Want to do it right? You are channeling your objective Cool Blue energy. Just wishing everyone could get along? You must be Earth Green. Want everyone to chip in and do it together? You are embracing your spirited Sunshine Yellow side. And for all of you thinking “just do it NOW” – obviously, you are Fiery Red.

If you can think about colors assuming these personalities or “energies”, then you can begin to understand the Insights Discovery learning system.

On a recent employee retreat with The James House, Floricane, in partnership with Debra Saneda of Kerr HR, used the Insights Discovery system to examine the team’s structure, work preferences and communication styles. The James House team is a group of caring, intense, grounded individuals who provide support, advocacy and education for people in the Tri-Cities affected by sexual and domestic violence.

As is the case in any organization – no matter their shared sense of purpose and vision – each person has a different way to achieve this goal.

From a set of 25 statements completed prior to the retreat, individual Insights Discovery profiles were generated. Each profile contained detailed statements about each person’s key strengths and weaknesses, effective communication strategies, value to the team, possible blind spots and management strategies.

Overall, the group felt as though the profiles were extremely accurate in pinpointing individual personalities and revealing points that required further thought and analysis. During the retreat, the James House staff committed to sharing profiles with each other and planned to identify specific items going forward that would add to team engagement.

According to Insights, each person uses color energies in varying degrees to shape personal style. Based on the personality model of Carl Jung, this preference-based system uses color as a common language for self-understanding and effective interaction. While everyone exhibits traits from all of the color energies, it is a preference for one color energy that indicates a preferred style for thinking, working and communicating with others.

The staff at the James House is committed to finding the best way to address the unique demands of their community support work. Engaging in the Insights Discovery process allowed the group to better identify team dynamics, appreciate personalities, preferences and behaviors of coworkers, and provided a take-away framework for each person to reflect and take action upon. The retreat was successful on many fronts, not the least of which was establishing a new common language that allows the group to show their true colors.