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Chapter 7 Case Study: What Do We Mean By Personality?

Use this case study as a discussion prompter with your teams or students.

Jason’s been with the organization for over 10 years and during that time held various positions from entry-level to his current role as Business Development Manager. He came to the organization from a competitor where he was employed for less than a year. Although, it was a brief time, Jason explained that he had been dealing with challenges in his personal life which interfered with his focus on the job. He felt it best to find employment with a new organization to start fresh. He seemed genuine and upfront about the brief time on-the-job, so the department manager felt compelled to give him that new start.

Upon receiving his promotion to a management role, Jason was thrilled. He had aspired to leadership since his employment began and always believed if he worked hard and stayed the course, he would eventually gain enough seniority to be promoted. That day finally arrived two weeks ago when he was informed by his supervisor that because of his seniority, he would be promoted to Business Development Manager leading a team of six.

Generally, Jason is well-liked, and he has always been willing to help where needed often taking on responsibilities beyond the scope of his own work, especially during busy times. However, people in the organization who have worked with Jason often speak of his “quirkiness” and “different” perspective and approach to new ideas and problem solving. They half-heartedly joked that he seemed to think his ideas were better than everyone else’s. He discretely minimized the contributions of others and attempted to control the direction of projects. Some expressed concern the promotion would “go to his head” and with his new team it would be “his way or the highway!”

Questions to Consider

  1. Should Jason’s seniority have been a factor in his promotion to a leadership role, why or why not?

  2. Were there any red flags in Jason’s behavior? If so, what were they?

  3. How should Jason’s personality have been assessed for suitability to a leadership role?

  4. What do you recommend for Jason in his new role and for organization leaders in DLP?


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