In my work as a coach, I find most of us can’t identify our own thinking styles. We’re too immersed in our behaviors and habits. That’s why people take assessments and work with a coach — to see what they can’t. And while we may be familiar with some our personality traits, few of us have considered our pattern of thinking.

And yet it’s important, especially when working in teams. Understanding how you think and how your teammates think is essential for all groups who must work together effectively. When you consider successful teams — though they are measured by what they produce — they function better when they have diverse thinking styles.

Research shows that it is ultimately how teams think together that most determines their performance. Instead of assigning groups based on personality traits, skills and strengths, managers might want to evaluate how potential members think.

What Is a Thinking Style?

According to Pearson Assessments, thinking styles are positive habits that contribute to better critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making. While no one thinking style is better than another, a balance of the various types results in better decision-making. Their online self-assessment measures how individuals use seven different approaches to thinking:

  • Analytical: clear thinking, orderly and rational
  • Inquisitive: curious, alert and interested in the surrounding world
  • Insightful: prudent, humble, reflective and strategic
  • Open-minded: intellectually tolerant and fair-minded
  • Systematic: conceptual, process-oriented and intuitive
  • Timely: efficient, reliable and responsive
  • Truth-seeking: independent, tough-minded and skeptical

ThinkWatson has a self-assessment you can take for free. Knowing your preferred style will help you approach problems and decisions with the right mindset. Which of these best describes your habitual thinking style?

What do you think about your own thinking? Do you usually make decisions and approach problem-solving in habitual ways? Let’s talk. You can contact me here or on LinkedIn.