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Castles by Ants – Episode 19: A General Description of the Expert Type

An ongoing series about psychology in the world of sport.

The fourth main personality type should be the easiest to explain given the context established by the other personality types. Experts are systematic, structured people. Rules are important to them. They like to set rules, and they also like having them because rules are obeyed in all circumstances and lead to a peaceful life. They are committed professionals in all cases. Usually they choose a particular field in which they want to gain deep professional knowledge. They are constantly building and laying solid foundations in order to achieve continuous, steady development. They are objective and fact oriented. A pure Expert does not deal with emotions; for them, the starting point for any decision is black and white information. They are constantly developing themselves; they do not need to be motivated; this is a demand from within. They gather a lot of information to make their decisions, in most cases too much information, which overloads them and makes it difficult to decide. They are logical people and can only tolerate logical people around them. This selectivity is very typical of them in general. They judge people by rules, moral expectations, and professional standards. They often disapprove of other personality types because they represent an unacceptable set of rules that are contrary to their own. And it is totally unacceptable for them if people cannot live their lives according to the rules. They are constantly planning. They do not like surprises, so they avoid them. They do not like change, so they prefer to move within their own world. This world becomes more and more perfect over time, and as a result, a successful Expert typically fulfils their ambitions by age 40.

Experts often have irritable natures and look for mistakes in everything. They want to find the logical loopholes in the world, so they are constantly testing their environment. They often fail during this testing because they are willing to judge and hold prejudices against a situation or person. Even if they are right in most cases, they go about this process in a very unpleasant, hurtful way that is devoid of any emotion. This way, even if they do right by another person, the other side will take it as an insult, so the Expert’s message will not reach its recipient. They can create serious tensions within a team with their persistent outspoken behaviour, as they do not “read the room” or consider timing before giving feedback. They are extremely self-critical people who cannot bear it if someone is not so. Most of the time, they say their critiques out loud. If someone makes a mistake, they should know about it immediately. They don’t understand what’s wrong with this because they like receiving critiques. They don’t like operating outside of a system, so they often freeze in unexpected situations. They can’t move on. They like standardising and categorising things, which, in many cases, hinders them from developing.

They were never the most popular figures business-wise. Rather, they fall into the category of “I put up with them because I need them”. Experts are excellent professionals, but unpleasant colleagues. They are the basic figures of professional credibility and professional development. Before 2008, they were employed reluctantly because competition was not as fierce. For this reason, they were present only at companies with specialised knowledge, but in high concentrations. They have always been rare in the Sales and Marketing fields, which also made it difficult for them to join any organisation. During the crisis, the fall of the Individual type brought the Expert type to the forefront. Much of society has rejected solutions focussed on sales and communication — as many have linked the crisis to these — and have begun to prefer more sincere speech and the delivery of harsh facts. And Experts are excellent at this! Thanks to this, the most successful companies are now giving Expert managers serious positions through a so-called dual solution. In this line-up, an Individual is responsible for the creative dynamism and a stable, perfect operation is in the hands of an Expert leader. Because Experts strive for perfection, the company eventually functions smoothly under their control.

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