After my last consulting gig for Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems (YPS), they invited me back to troubleshoot their R&D team’s group dynamics . To get started, I administered a web-based Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment to each member of YPS’s R&D team to discern their personality types . I then plotted the personality similarities between the individuals in the network graph shown below. The names of course are fictional:
Each node in the image represents a specific personality type in the Myers-Briggs schema. These are constructed by combining four dichotomous variables: Extrovert (E) vs. Introvert (I), Sensing (S) vs. Intuition (N), Thinking (T) vs. Feeling (F), and Perceiving (P) vs. Judging (J) . For example, in the graph above, Mary is introverted, intuitive, feeling and perceiving; while Tracy is extroverted, sensing, thinking, and judging.
Similarities between personalities are indicated by the number of attributes in common. In the image, three attributes in common is shown with a blue line (e.g., John and Ike share three out of the four personality type indicators). Two attributes in common is shown as a light blue line, while one attribute in common is presented as a light green line. After creating the image and coaching YPS’s team on the meaning of the personality attributes, they gained better understanding of their interactions.
The graph was created using the Fruchterman-Reingold force-directed algorithm as implemented in the Python NetworkX package. The edges were weighted according to the number of attributes shared between nodes. Code and sample data used to generate the graph is available here.
1. I completely made this up.
2. Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems is a fictional company featured in multiple Sci-Fi movies, novels, and TV shows.