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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
ISFPs, help me here.

Suppose you are in a job that requires you to do things in a certain way. You aren't necessarily aligned with that, but need to do what you are asked to do (because, that's how jobs work sometimes).

You believe you are a great contributor, but some people around you are giving you feedback that you need to work on some things. They specify in very tangible terms, giving examples, where improvement is required. You may be seeing some of those things as unproductive activities and don't accept the feedback.

Here is the question - how can your manager give you feedback in such a circumstance, even with the best intention of making you do the necessary things to help you keep your job. Your manager sees your job at risk now and is trying to help. What is the best way he/she can do it?

Thanks for helping out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hmm... I have got this feedback before from an ISFP too, @ferroequinologist. However, when I did lay out the problem point-by-point with factual evidence and a note for each point about how it can be constructively addressed, all hell broke loose. I ended up causing the said ISFP to completely lash out, become super-defensive, blame everyone else instead of see the specific point being made and forget facts about things that had earlier being told to that person in their favour (compliments). It went very badly and left me totally confused.

Somewhere it seems (to me) that this particular ISFP (or I don't know if it applies to others of the type) really wants to view herself in a positive light. May be it is some past experience that left her feeling not very confident internally (although, she outwards projects a lot of confidence) and by pointing out her errors, I only fed that internal voice?

Would you be able to help me, given this additional information? I know it is not a lot of specifics, but is there anything that jumps out at you as to what might have gone wrong?
 

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Hmm... I have got this feedback before from an ISFP too, @ferroequinologist. However, when I did lay out the problem point-by-point with factual evidence and a note for each point about how it can be constructively addressed, all hell broke loose. I ended up causing the said ISFP to completely lash out, become super-defensive, blame everyone else instead of see the specific point being made and forget facts about things that had earlier being told to that person in their favour (compliments). It went very badly and left me totally confused.

Somewhere it seems (to me) that this particular ISFP (or I don't know if it applies to others of the type) really wants to view herself in a positive light. May be it is some past experience that left her feeling not very confident internally (although, she outwards projects a lot of confidence) and by pointing out her errors, I only fed that internal voice?

Would you be able to help me, given this additional information? I know it is not a lot of specifics, but is there anything that jumps out at you as to what might have gone wrong?
Unfortunately, you are dealing with an ISFP that is wound up to the breaking point. There really is nothing one can do then. This person needs to realize their own situation. My guess is that they are in a job not suited to their personality. Don't know what to do in this situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Unfortunately, you are dealing with an ISFP that is wound up to the breaking point. There really is nothing one can do then. This person needs to realize their own situation. My guess is that they are in a job not suited to their personality. Don't know what to do in this situation.
You are very perceptive to come to this hunch without any details whatsoever. :) That's my guess too, being in the thick of things. That said, what I am trying to find out is how the person became so wound up after all in the first place!

She is in a job that isn't a perfect fit for her, but is not a terrible fit either. She'd have to work on some areas (that specifically exercise the 'Ne' and 'Te' side of things) to fill the gaps, but surely it wasn't a lost cause at all. I felt very sorry that she gave up far too soon, feeling defensive for the mistakes she was making. If she had been a bit more open to the fact that she had gaps within herself to fill and worked directly at fixing those skill issues, she may have become a great contributor - but she stopped short of trying properly.

That's why I felt very very sad. Everyone wanted to help her, but when the pointers and corrections became direct and specific, she no longer wanted that help. Instead, she decided to declare herself incompetent first, and later, declare everyone else unhelpful and imagining that everyone was ganging up against her!

Any pointers on how this showdown and quick acceleration towards self-questioning could have been avoided? How could we have helped her instead of making her feel incompetent, but yet demand harder (and more directed) effort?
 

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You are very perceptive to come to this hunch without any details whatsoever. :) That's my guess too, being in the thick of things. That said, what I am trying to find out is how the person became so wound up after all in the first place!

She is in a job that isn't a perfect fit for her, but is not a terrible fit either. She'd have to work on some areas (that specifically exercise the 'Ne' and 'Te' side of things) to fill the gaps, but surely it wasn't a lost cause at all. I felt very sorry that she gave up far too soon, feeling defensive for the mistakes she was making. If she had been a bit more open to the fact that she had gaps within herself to fill and worked directly at fixing those skill issues, she may have become a great contributor - but she stopped short of trying properly.

That's why I felt very very sad. Everyone wanted to help her, but when the pointers and corrections became direct and specific, she no longer wanted that help. Instead, she decided to declare herself incompetent first, and later, declare everyone else unhelpful and imagining that everyone was ganging up against her!

Any pointers on how this showdown and quick acceleration towards self-questioning could have been avoided? How could we have helped her instead of making her feel incompetent, but yet demand harder (and more directed) effort?
Insight? Or memories....

What you say about exercising Ne and Te--to you, you think that's no big deal, but you have to realize that Ne for us is a very weird and difficult function to come to terms with. Socionics calls it our point of least resistance or vulnerable function. There is no other function that wears us down so fast as that. And Te, being our inferior, again, too much usage--without being able to unwind or let it go--is typically what brings us into a grip episode, which is what you've been seeing active in your ISFP's temperament. One can only live so long in their inferior function without some long-term damage. You maybe thought it was a little thing, but denying our Fi, and suppressing our Se is very demeaning and extinguishing to us. You say she stopped short, but that may have been the only way she could restore her own humanity. I don't know your situation well enough to honestly give you any real insight, but I suspect that if there were people more competent in Te and Ne under her, it was going to be a no-win situation, so long as the system was built on some kind of hierarchy, rules, etc. She'd need a free hand to organize things in a way that best worked for her needed style of operating--flat, democratic, allowing people with skills the freedom to make their own decisions, and carrying the responsibility of those decisions. I really don't know your situation, so I honestly fear to comment too much...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Insight? Or memories....

What you say about exercising Ne and Te--to you, you think that's no big deal, but you have to realize that Ne for us is a very weird and difficult function to come to terms with. Socionics calls it our point of least resistance or vulnerable function. There is no other function that wears us down so fast as that. And Te, being our inferior, again, too much usage--without being able to unwind or let it go--is typically what brings us into a grip episode, which is what you've been seeing active in your ISFP's temperament. One can only live so long in their inferior function without some long-term damage. You maybe thought it was a little thing, but denying our Fi, and suppressing our Se is very demeaning and extinguishing to us. You say she stopped short, but that may have been the only way she could restore her own humanity. I don't know your situation well enough to honestly give you any real insight, but I suspect that if there were people more competent in Te and Ne under her, it was going to be a no-win situation, so long as the system was built on some kind of hierarchy, rules, etc. She'd need a free hand to organize things in a way that best worked for her needed style of operating--flat, democratic, allowing people with skills the freedom to make their own decisions, and carrying the responsibility of those decisions. I really don't know your situation, so I honestly fear to comment too much...
Oh man! I am blown away! Thank you, sincerely, @ferroequinologist ! You have no idea how much sense you are making - to the point I am thinking you are probably right at my cubicle-side, watching the whole production! I absolutely understand the difficulty that ISFP must be having with coming to terms with Ne and Te. Because, I know how hard it is for me to work with Si or Se or Ti, for example! But Ne is my strength and I was trying to help her with that area. But you know what, this is why she felt she could "never measure up to my expectation". :( I really feel like I have failed a person in being unable to help them value what they bring naturally to the workplace. However, much as I respect her ability to organize fun trips for the entire team, a job that requires thorough analysis of possibilities was unable to do much for her strengths. I had no choice but push her to work on those areas. Besides, much as she had wanted a free hand with organizing her work (and she did pretty well in several areas where she had self-organized), there were places where her style of working just wasn't working for the organization. I had to insist on processes that we had already defined. That, she rebeled against - big time! I now see why.

What you are saying makes sense. May be it was never meant to be. Now she probably hates me from the bottom of her soul and totally doesn't trust that I had meant her well and had meant to push her towards success in the organization. :( Not sure how to salvage the situation. I don't like negativity at all and would like to restore relationships to at least neutrality. Is there any pointer you can give me on at least salvaging the relationship to become less negative?

Thanks very much! You are really helping me!
 

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Oh man! I am blown away! Thank you, sincerely, @ferroequinologist ! You have no idea how much sense you are making - to the point I am thinking you are probably right at my cubicle-side, watching the whole production! I absolutely understand the difficulty that ISFP must be having with coming to terms with Ne and Te. Because, I know how hard it is for me to work with Si or Se or Ti, for example! But Ne is my strength and I was trying to help her with that area. But you know what, this is why she felt she could "never measure up to my expectation". :( I really feel like I have failed a person in being unable to help them value what they bring naturally to the workplace. However, much as I respect her ability to organize fun trips for the entire team, a job that requires thorough analysis of possibilities was unable to do much for her strengths. I had no choice but push her to work on those areas. Besides, much as she had wanted a free hand with organizing her work (and she did pretty well in several areas where she had self-organized), there were places where her style of working just wasn't working for the organization. I had to insist on processes that we had already defined. That, she rebeled against - big time! I now see why.

What you are saying makes sense. May be it was never meant to be. Now she probably hates me from the bottom of her soul and totally doesn't trust that I had meant her well and had meant to push her towards success in the organization. :( Not sure how to salvage the situation. I don't like negativity at all and would like to restore relationships to at least neutrality. Is there any pointer you can give me on at least salvaging the relationship to become less negative?

Thanks very much! You are really helping me!
I don't see how I or you could help at this point... For her, it would just be a reminder of bad times...

I do have some more thoughts on inferior Te, though... not so much for this situation, but maybe to help future ones should this be read someday. ISFPs struggle with execution (IXFPs, actually--both of them). There is a tension there between the Fi and Te, and our Te is just really bad at organizing, or, should I say, executing judgment on others (or self). We will try to avoid it at all possible, and then, stress pushes too far, and then... BAM! We lower the boom. Execute judgments, lay down the law... but once the stress passes, we find ourselves 1. incapable of following up, and 2. realizing just how extreme it was, and out of scale to the problem, so we would just as soon forget it. We are really non-verbal people, so our "apologies" tend to be non-verbal as well--suddenly doing extras, or compensating, etc. We would be happy if people quietly acknowledged that action in recognition of what the gesture means, and not force verbal "confrontation" which could, in fact, re-ignite the whole problem again.

We really aren't well suited for laying down the law, or being in charge of executing it. Theoretically, we may actually do fine--i.e. talk about it, or even organize something on paper, but please, don't expect us to be the ones in charge of carrying it out. That's just not our strength. I was a boss once. I had my own department, hidden in a far-off corner of the company. I had a bunch of workers and work I was responsible for, and we were easily forgotten--so long as things went well, and no one complained. I had a nice system where I had workers responsible for doing all the daily dirty work, and we worked as a rather flat team. Nobody was a "boss" and nobody was an underling. I worked hard to find ways and places for everybody to be able to do their best with the least amount of oversight--got them, in fact, to oversee themselves. I would work beside them, on occasion, and compete with them. I was pretty much the fastest worker at every job in the plant. It was a way of encouraging the workers to work their best--because they didn't want me to show them up. ;-) Yeah, I could rub it in--in a good-natured way, of course. Life wasn't perfect. Sometimes the stress would hit, and I'd lay down the law. I think they learned, however, when that happened, to just wait. The next day, I'd come to my senses, and we'd move on like I hadn't threatened anything... Again, it wasn't perfect--esp. as this was the beginning of my moving into an extended time of living in my inferior--and in the long haul, it was pretty brutal... But there were good things then that I wish now I'd understood exactly _why_ and had seen how to carry those good things moving forward in my later life...

But still, I think it is for the better for everyone involved that she's not longer the boss... and no, I don't have any idea how to fix things now...
 
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