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Christmas Party Characters in the 100 Acre Wood…


What’s your take on Eeyore? Gloomy, miserable, melancholy and just down right depressive? That’s one way to look at his character. I accept that’s the way he comes across in the tales of the 100 Acre Wood. There is however, in my opinion so much more to him than meets the eye.

Yes, we could look upon him as pessimistic, but could it be that we misconstrue this supposed pessimism? Could it actually be that Eeyore is contemplative and pensive? Eeyore is a thinker and a planner. He is meticulous and measured in all he does. In the Merrill Reid four quadrant models, Eeyore is given the personality type of ‘analytical’. He has the ability to weigh up all options available, recognises potential obstacles, comes up with contingency plans and avoids emotional decisions. In the same personality test, Tigger is described as ‘expressive’, Rabbit as a ‘driver’, and Pooh, ‘amiable’. Based on these character traits I picture the 100 Acre Wood Christmas party looking something like this…..

Tigger, as the office entertainer, is the first on the dance floor showing off his moves and last out of the door. Rabbit being the creative one, has organised the band and spent hours decorating the venue, and Pooh Bear is there helping out wherever he is needed. Eeyore however, is the glue that pulls the entire evening together. He will keep track of the budget, ensure the band have a place to relax before their set starts and whilst the other party goers stagger off at the end of the evening, Eeyore will ensure that the mess is cleared up, glasses returned to the hire company, and the band receive their payment. It’s true to say, that without Eeyore, the 100 Acre Wood Christmas party will run far less smoothly.

There are Tigger's, Rabbits and Pooh Bears in every business. These different personality traits are essential to have in a team as they complement each other in different ways and lend themselves as a whole to an overall balanced approach in business. At some point we have all worked with a detail-orientated, sometimes tactless but hardworking manager. I have frequently come across enthusiastic, competitive salesmen with tendencies to both exaggerate and leave out essential facts. And in every business environment you will generally find a quiet, softly spoken person, who hates conflict and has difficulty making firm decisions.

Amid this often chaotic mix of personalities in life and business, there needs to be an island of predictability that is Eeyore. Yes, he may be highly critical, overly meticulous and will frustratingly cross all the t’s and dot every single i. He will quite possibly annoy the hell out of the more animated personalities in the room, with his long winded, painstakingly slow approach to finding out the right way to get something done. But his unerring sense of order, his analytical skills, and the persistence to get the job done, are gifts that should not be ignored.

Given the opportunity to understand how his oftentimes painstaking and pedantic ways affect his colleagues, and then given the tools and encouragement to make positive changes, Eeyore could be perceived very differently. With a different communication style alone, his valuable contributions to the team would be recognised as beneficial and potentially indispensible.

 So cut the Eeyore’s around you some slack. While the Tigger’s of this world will frequently cause chaos and leave carnage in their wake….the Eeyore’s will bring a sense of order and calm to the mayhem they leave behind. Happy Christmas!

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