Recently we’ve been diving into how much we care about our PPC’s personalities in order to hire them, and, to make it even more specific, if we should choose one who has higher technology skills or people skills, so today we are going to be discussing whether to hire a person that’s more submissive and will quietly obey to anything you say, or one that pushes back a little and has a tendency to speak their minds. To do so, we’ll introduce you to both styles and present a few aspects revolving around yourself, around different scenarios, and even around potential conflicts so that you can be the one to make the final choice, depending on your own particular situation.
For starters, what are we talking about when we talk about PPCs that only follow orders? (No, I’m not talking about Bad Guys who just follow orders!) We basically mean the vast majority of employees everywhere, who’ll just take a direct order for them to go ahead and do exactly as you say. This kind of employee tends to be more submissive, meaning there is little to no possibility of them being against anything you say, and probably will require more supervision and general tracking.
Regarding the PPCs who push back a little more, we are talking about the kind of people who enjoy bringing their point of view, proposing new ideas and changes, and tend to let you know if they don’t agree with your orders or thoughts. In general, they’ll tend to be more autonomous and will enjoy tasks that require more creativity and having a mind of their own. (Side-note: here’s one of my personal favorite memes about pushing back!)
It is important to highlight that neither of them is good or bad by themselves (and I’ll avoid any philosophical debate on the issue), and that really depends completely on what you expect from your employees, what your particular circumstances are, and as always, what you prioritize over the rest of things. So now, let’s dig into some aspects to consider whenever having to choose between these two types of people! Shall we?
The task you need them for
Even when we are in just one workplace, there are many different tasks to take care of. Some of them are repetitive tasks that just require a one-time instruction and then some supervision in order to get it done. If that’s the case then a PPC that follows orders will be your best choice because it’ll make it very easy for you to just give them orders, show them some examples and check on them every now and then to make sure it’s all good. However, if you are facing a task that requires a bit more creativity and needs some development, then a PPC that pushes back will be the best option because they will be much more likely to bring new ideas and let you know their thoughts.
Are you willing to cope with criticism?
Personally, I’m a person who loves to speak her mind and is happy to have everyone tell them exactly what they think, and I think the world is full of people like me, but also of people who just can’t take it, and that’s alright too. Considering obvious that the critics will be given in a constructive and respectful way, it matters to make up your mind about whether you are willing to receive them or not.
So are you in the group who’s happy to be told when anyone thinks differently, has something to suggest or change, or are you the kind of person that enjoys having everyone agreeing with them? If you belong to the first group, then your PPC who pushes back will be very happy to know that they work in an environment where thoughts, suggestions, and comments are welcome. However, if you belong to the second one, then maybe a PPC that’s more submissive and reluctant to share their thoughts, if they even have them, will be the better fit for you.
How welcoming are you to new ideas?
Even if it’s not a criticism, some people can be very reluctant to flexibility, innovation, and new great ideas. If you and your company is looking to change some of their processes or develop new products, then you definitely should find a PPC that’s looking for a job somewhere where innovation, creativity, and new ideas are well received, so a PPC that pushes back a little and is not afraid to come up with new strategies or to speak against the current ones will be the best choice. However, if your company has been doing the exact same thing for a while, and intends to keep on this track, then you should definitely hire a PPC that’s happy to just receive orders and complete them exactly as requested, leaving no room for suggestions or changes.
The time you want to dedicate to it
Having a PPC that just follows orders may require some time at first, to give them the specific order, give them examples and supervise it so that they can go on with it in the right way. PPCs that tend to push back will require more time when it comes to long conversations, feedback giving and receiving, brainstorming, and even finding their ways around a given task. So this really comes down to where you want to spend your time, do you prefer to spend some time at first and then usually never again? Or do you enjoy the time it takes to conceive new better ideas with your more subversive PPC?
So the bottom line here is that having a PPC that pushes back can be a very enriching and dynamic experience to have, but we are not always up for it and sometimes we really just need someone who does what they are required to. Both of these are great qualities to have when chosen wisely and maintaining a healthy and practical balance of actually getting the job done and also being able to express oneself.
To conclude, I believe that, whenever choosing to work with someone, we create a commitment and expect the person, the PPC specialist , in this case, to accomplish it. So this commitment really comes down to what we want and need from our employees, and that really depends on our own and our company’s requirements and desires. Basically, what we’d need to do is to take a moment to figure out what we need, and then hire someone that’s able to suit our requirements.