Myers Briggs: A Dilemma in Problem Solving Approaches
Some of you look at the facts, analyze it carefully, and use a logical, objective approach to the decision. Maybe if she told you first, you might have done something for the family, but she didn't. Letting her do this without any penalty is wrong. You can't set a precedent. You call the police and/or social services.
If that doesn't sound like you, then you might be the person who takes a more subjective approach to problem solving. You step into the problem, try to understand it from the perspective of its impact on other people. You look at the children and the Mom. You agree her actions are wrong, but you try to help her. You let her leave without paying. You might offer her a job to help pay back what she owes. You help her find programs meant to help in such cases.
In the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), this third dichotomy looks at your approach to problem solving. The first response, a more analytical one, fits the Thinker's preference. The second, more personal approach, fits the Feeler's preference.
Before you judge, Feelers think and Thinkers feel. They examine problems differently. In many cases, they might come to the same decision, but they get there through different thought paths.
The Thinkers are analytical and logical in their approach. They look at the situation from a distance, not becoming involved. Rules are meant to be followed. Fairness means everyone is treated the same. Often, this comes across in a more blunt, no-nonsense way of communicating.
The Feelers focus on creating an environment of harmony and empathy. They place themselves in the situation and look at it through the other person's eyes. Fairness means each person is unique and receives the treatment that fits them. Often, this comes across as a friendly, but sometimes over-involved, approach to problem solving.
Each of these approaches has its good points and bad points. In the situation posed above, there isn't a perfect answer no matter what you do. As in my last two posts, Our Energy Source and Gathering Information, these differences can create conflict between people. The Thinker might alienate people with their blunt, no frills approach to communicating. The Feeler might be taken advantage of because of their empathetic approach. The two work best when they work together to balance each other in a problem solving situation.
As in the other aspects of MBTI, we use both of the preferences, but there is one you gravitate toward without much thought. It's your first inclination.
So, what would you do if you were the restaurant manager?