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bashful  |  dopey  |  sleepy  |  sneezy  |  doc  |  grumpy  |  happy


Some Strengths which Doc may exhibit in a Group Meeting:

  • Naturally born leaders
  • Make decisions quickly
  • Very verbal about their opinions
  • Driven to accomplish

How do you know when you have a Doc in your meeting?

  • Announces his expertise very early in the meeting
  • Sits opposite the leader
  • Tries to take over leadership
  • Answers every question, reminding group of his status
  • Calls for concensus from others on his views
  • Asks rhetorical questions

Some Difficult Behaviors which Doc may exhibit in a Group Meeting:

  • Intimidating to other group members
  • If there are other Docs in the group, creates a competitive atmosphere
  • Avoids talking about feelings
  • Only willing to discuss pure facts
  • Interrupts
  • Talks loudly and aggressively
  • Contemptuous
  • Often nitpicking and perfectionist

Assumed Feelings Underlying BOTH Strengths and Weaknesses for Doc:

  • Feels inadequate
  • That's why he's always "on" and needing to prove himself
  • Afraid of being found out - thinks he's not really smart/informed
  • Feels compelled to perform
  • Wants to be loved for who he really is
  • Would just like to relax and be accepted without having to work so hard

How to Leverage Doc Strengths:

  • Create a well organized meeting where definite guidelines are set
  • Engage them in creative problem solving
  • Let them know that their input will help control and perfect whatever the results are so that things will run more smoothly
  • Allow them to express their opinions on paper first and call on them to read their response when it makes sense to you as leader
  • Maintain focus in the group
  • Appreciate doc as well as giving credit to other group members as a creative, hard-working team
  • Ask doc for his advice in how to solve any problem in the group by jotting down his thoughts about it, and then calling on him to share it later.

Potential Interventions to Diffuse Doc Problems:

  • If appropriate, screen out possible experts beforehand
  • Acknowledge his special expertise
  • "Take pressure off him" by saying:
    • We don't want to give Doc our jobs by counting on him to answer all our questions
    • Remind group that all are experts on what they know and feel
  • Be particularly sure all write down responses before discussing
  • Call on him last
  • If necessary, process interrupt

General Description of Doc Personality:

As they are prone to let you know, Docs actually are natural born leaders. They live in a world of possibilities where they see all sorts challenges to be surmounted, and they want to be the ones responsible for surmounting them. They have a drive for leadership, which is well-served by their quickness to grasp complexities, their ability to absorb a large amount of impersonal information, and their quick and decisive judgments. They are "take charge" people.

Docs are very career-focused, and fit into the corporate/medical/academic world quite naturally. They are constantly scanning their environment for potential problems which they can turn into solutions. They generally see things from a long-range perspective, and are usually successful at identifying plans to turn problems around - especially problems of a strategic nature. Docs are usually successful, because they are so driven to leadership. They're tireless in their efforts on the job, and driven to visualize where an organization is headed. For these reasons, they are natural leaders.

There is not much room for error in the world of Doc. They dislike to see mistakes repeated, and have no patience with inefficiency. They may become quite harsh when their patience is tried in these respects, because they are not naturally tuned in to people's feelings, and more than likely don't believe that they should tailor their judgments in consideration for people's feelings. Docs have difficulty seeing things from outside their own perspective. Docs naturally have little patience with people who do not see things the same way as they do. Doc needs to consciously work on recognizing the value of other people's opinions, as well as the value of being sensitive towards people's feelings. In the absence of this awareness, Doc can be a forceful, intimidating and overbearing individual.

Doc has a tremendous amount of personal power and presence which will work for hi m as a force towards achieving their goals. However, this personal power is also an agent of alienation and self-aggrandizement.

Docs are very forceful, decisive individuals. They make decisions quickly, and are quick to verbalize their opinions and decisions to the rest of the world. A Doc who has developed in a generally less than ideal way may become dictatorial and abrasive - intrusively giving orders and direction without a sound reason for doing so, and without consideration for the people involved.

Although Docs are not naturally tuned into other people's feelings, these individuals frequently have very strong sentimental streaks. Often these sentiments are very powerful to the Doc, although they will likely hide it from general knowledge, believing the feelings to be a weakness. Because the world of feelings and values is not where Doc naturally functions, they may sometimes make value judgments and hold onto submerged emotions which are ill-founded and inappropriate, and will cause them problems - sometimes rather serious problems.

Docs love to interact with people. As Extroverts, they're energized and stimulated primarily externally. There's nothing more enjoyable and satisfying to Doc than having a lively, challenging conversation. They especially respect people who are able to stand up to them, and argue persuasively for their point of view. There aren't too many people who will do so, however, because Doc is a very forceful and dynamic presence who has a tremendous amount of self-confidence and excellent verbal communication skills. Even the most confident individuals may experience moments of self-doubt when debating a point with a Doc.


To read descriptions of the other Dwarf Personalities, choose an appropriate link below:
bashful  |  dopey  |  sleepy  |  sneezy  |  doc  |  grumpy  |  happy

read more about general tips and techniques for creating an encouraging, supportive atmosphere for all participants in a group meeting.


About The Author
Dr. Sharon Livingston

Sharon Livingston, Ph.D. is founder and Co-President of The Looking Glass and Executive Solutions, Inc. Articles either about or by Dr. Livingston have appeared in The New York Times (several times - see 5/6/01 Long Island edition), Marketing News, Communication World, Adweek, The Washington Post, The Daily News, Newsday, Advertising and Communication Times, The American Bar Association Journal, Delta Sky, Discover, Beverage World, U.S. News and World Report, Quirks Marketing Review, and Winners. Her work has been referenced in The Group Depth Interview, a book published by Prentice-Hall, and Beyond Mind Games a book published by American Demographics. She has addressed gatherings of the American Marketing Association, the Advertising Research Foundation, the Pharmaceutical Marketing Research Society, Qualitative Research Consultant Association, Marketing Research Associaiton, The Qualitative Research Council of the Advertising Research Foundation, Professional Marketing Research Society of Canada and the Sales Executive Clubs. Dr. Livingston holds a B.A. in Psychology, an M.A. in Organizational Behavior and a PhD in Clinical Psychology, has had extensive training in creative ideation procedures, group dynamics, applied psychological techniques and projective methods. She is currently on the Qualitative Research Council of the Advertising Research Foundation, is a current and founding member of QRCA - the Qualitative Research Consultant Association; a founding member of FFA - the Focus Facility Association, and is also a member of the American Marketing Association, and the National Association of Female Executives.



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