The Enneagram in Telecommunications

As manager of a company engaged in technologically enabling people to communicate with one another, how can you make sure that your own managers and employees can communicate effectively and constructively with each other? A shared language and knowledge, procedures, and a communicative culture can greatly help achieve these goals. But what happens when your direct manager is stationed in India, the team leader in Los Angeles, and colleagues are scattered across several other countries and perhaps only meet once a year? How do they get to know each other so that they can discuss, negotiate, and instruct each other and agree on decisions and consequences? Finally, how do they remain positive, understanding, and helpful while doing so?

It is important to recognize that one international oral language (for example, English) is not enough to make people function together, but that another language is also needed; that is, a single multicultural personality language, which can lend to each individual self-knowledge of his or her own behaviour and increase the understanding of other people's behavior.

By understanding the areas where we are alike and different, how the similarities and differences are expressed, and how we can utilize both, we can develop a common people culture that works in both physical and virtual meetings between people.

In several global telecommunication companies, the Enneagram is now the preferred system where it was initially introduced to supplement existing personality type systems. The Enneagram is the most pedagogic yet the most fun, exciting, and motivating cross-cultural personality typology system, a fact that makes it easy to apply to all levels of an organization. When colleagues from Hong Kong, New York, Paris, and Bangladore communicate, they know each other both as colleagues and as personality types, and this makes their teamwork more open and direct. When new teams are assembled across country borders and cultures, it is as if the participants already know each other simply by exchanging Enneagram types and telling stories.

> back to top

Vagn Kirkeskov is an international business consultant and business psychology advisor with more than twenty years of experience as an organisation development consultant and executive coach.

Vagn's consulting company, Kirkeskov & Partners based in Copenhagen, is engaged in innovative joint ventures with Danish and international companies inside and outside of Scandinavia, creating collective and personal development and learning processes within and across traditional organisational business disciplines. This is done by combining Lean Management, change management, adult learning, conflict management and coaching with the Enneagram in a way that integrates these disciplines with the nine Enneagram personality styles.

Vagn's organizational knowledge stems from his involvement with Danish, Scandinavian, and global companies within both private and public organisations, and his physiological background allows him to work closely with responsible managers, making sure that both the managers and their employees understand the change process and are personally involved and motivated to take responsibility for their choices and decisions, as well as their consequences.

His major focus is to elevate the consciousness in organizations by developing the managers' and the employees' interest and desire for becoming self-managing, thus creating a positive psychological environment that enables motivated employees to work with more joy, growth, and well being.