What Can the Evaluative Thinking Style Bring to the Team?
The first advertisement to feature the now-famous Nike slogan, Just Do It, featured Walt Stack. Every morning, the octogenarian ran 17 miles, rain or shine. He did it because he was ardently committed; he took pure joy in running. Both Mr. Stack and the Nike slogan itself embody emotion, passion, and enthusiasm – qualities that describe the soft blue thinking style perfectly. So, how does the evaluative thinking style show up in the workplace?
Of all the styles identified by the Thinking Intentions Profile, soft blue is the most subjective. It is based on emotions, assessments, and personal views. In common with hard blue thinkers, those with a soft blue profile move towards action. Unlike their hard blue counterparts, they do it from a deeper emotional level.
“Just Do It” is more than a slogan; it could be the catch phrase of these thinkers. They love to evaluate, but rather than cold data, they rely on personal opinions of emotions. Driven by passion and motivation, soft blue thinkers tend to become the “cheerleaders” of the team. If there is a tight deadline, for instance, these are the folks who step up and say, “We can get this done! We have a deadline, but if we put our heads together, we can do it.”
Tony Robbins appears to demonstrate soft blue tendencies: he is guided from an internal, moral signpost, and he is relentlessly motivating. Millions of people – from Oprah and Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff, to Andre Agassi and Hugh Jackman – are moved, and inspired, by his enthusiasm. In leadership roles or as team members, soft blue thinkers can contribute immensely to high-level results.
Among the strengths of these thinkers:
- Evaluative thinkers are full of enthusiasm.
- They love to motivate and influence others.
- They feel a strong sense of commitment and purpose.
- They enjoy forecasting, predicting, and projecting into the future. These are the strategic thinkers of the organization.
- As leaders, they are highly ethical and moral.
As with every thinking style, there is the potential for a downside:
- They may be perceived as too emotional or excitable, which can create conflict or discomfort in corporate environments.
- Decisions may be questioned because they are based on feelings, emotions, and personal views versus facts and information.
With awareness and understanding, teams and individuals can leverage the strengths of evaluative thinkers, harnessing that passion and enthusiasm to drive meaningful results. When tempered by those with more objective thinking styles, teams will be able to “Just Do It” and achieve greater levels of success.