Writers are Team Members Too

Most people think of writing as a solitary activity. But writers don’t work alone. They look to writers groups for feedback, to editors for suggestions and fine tuning, to proofreaders, agents, designers, printers, reviewers, and on the list goes.

If you think of those who help you in your writing as part of your team, you may see each person’s contribution differently.

Since teams are made up of people and people are individuals with varying perspectives and preferences, it’s important to think about the best way to work with each person on your team. Although I’m not a great believer in putting people in boxes, sometimes categorizing preferences helps me better understand people’s behaviors.

Here are four areas of human behavior and their characteristics. See where the members of your writing team fit best so you can better understand and work with each one. As a bonus, you may also want to use the list below when developing your characters as well.

IDEA PEOPLE

  • Expressive, perhaps a bit emotional
  • Intuitive
  • Creative
  • Enjoy people and relate better to people than to tasks
  • Like to influence others
  • Easily bored

STRATEGY PEOPLE

  • Act quickly
  • Want immediate results
  • Are goal-given
  • Authoritative
  • Self-assured
  • Like to plan

SUPPORT PEOPLE

  • Easygoing
  • Reliable
  • Helpful
  • Adaptive
  • Promote harmony, especially between the logical and intuitive team members
  • Support team effort

DETAIL PEOPLE

  • Quality-conscious
  • Like to look for inconsistencies
  • Follow rules and standards
  • Research before deciding
  • Employ critical thinking skills
  • Cautious

When possible, build a team containing all four types of people so you get the benefit of interacting with all of them. I’m confident your end result will be better than if you surround yourself with people who always agree with you or who never challenge you. Happy writing!

 

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