Why I prefer PCM as a personality and behavioural model?

Personality Types; Personality and Behavioural Tools

I have been part of the “business world” for more than 12 years, working mainly for corporates, in areas ranging from customer service, to strategy and to employee engagement. As part of some High Potential Leadership Development programmes, I have been exposed to a number of trainings and tools, many of them looking at personality types, behaviours, communication styles, etc – the regular personality and behavioural model.

Some of the personality and behavioural model s I still remember are: Myers-Briggs (MBTI), DiSC, Insights, Belbin and Tetramap. Of all of these models, the Process Communication Model (PCM) really stands out and still remains with me over the years since being trained in it.

While I do believe that all the above-mentioned tools can be useful, it was only PCM that really endures the test of time.

I know, I am biased, I love PCM and I have changed my career path to become a Certified PCM trainer and have made this my main activity.

Prior to becoming a PCM trainer, I was a regular employee who took part in a training and found that, even 2 years afterwards, I could remember applicable advice from PCM. When I applied my learning I was successfully able to communicate better. I became attuned to others and could often facilitate them out of their distress behaviours. I also found that I grew in my capacity to help myself too.

Seeing how well this worked, I decided to become a certified trainer.

Below are some of the things that really resonated with me and made me trust PCM.

It is scientifically validated.

NASA used PCM for many years. What you might not know is that “NASA helped fund a research validation of the Process Communication Model. These research findings included confirmation of the six positive Personality Types, each with its own measured amount of energy and order of character strengths, environmental preference, Perception […], psychological needs, preferred management style, Personality Part, and Channel of Communication.”[i]

It takes into account that we change during our lives

This is one element I really like about PCM as a personality and behavioural model. It says that we keep some of our characteristics for life, such as: our Base perception (the way we view and perceive the world), our character strengths, preferred management style, etc. However, there are two things that can potentially change one or more times during our life span: our main psychological needs (what motivates us and stresses us) and the way we react when under stress. Statistics say that around two thirds of the population will go through such a change at least once in their lives.

And the good part is, you don’t need to do the personality questionnaire again to know if you’ve changed or not: once you become familiarised with PCM, you’ll know how to recognise this in yourself and in others.

You can say that, if some personality models offer you a static image of your personality, PCM offers you a moving picture.

It differentiates between behaviours under stress and normal circumstances

Whilst I don’t know all the models out there, however, from the ones I know, PCM is the only one that helps us understand that some behaviours (especially those which are not constructive) can be a sign of distress. The model thus distinguishes between how we behave in normal situations, and how we behave under stress. And, furthermore, the model helps us to understand what we need to do when we or others display these distress behaviours.

What are the potential downsides of PCM?

PCM is a rather complex model

While many of the other personality and behavioural models out there require about 1 day of training for the participant to be able to use them, the Core Topics PCM Workshop lasts for 3 full days (or 18h split over more days).

The model needs more time as it takes its mission of teaching us how to apply psychology to improve our communication and stress management skills seriously. And the model teaches us how to work with various concepts that build upon each other to create a tool that works. We learn about perceptions, currencies, base and phase personality types, preferred management styles, environmental preferences, personality parts, channels of communication, psychological needs, phasing… an entirely new vocabulary that makes a lot of sense by the end of the training.

To offset this, it is possible to receive a shortened version of the training, still learn some of the tools and perhaps return to deepen your skills and knowledge later.

It needs practice to work

As with all other models, the more we practice PCM, the better we become. Honing our PCM skills takes patience, observing, testing and trailing. We learn how to recognise the base and the phase personality types in others and what that means for communication and stress management. It’s not the easiest process, but for sure it is extremely rewarding.

As I say to participants in my PCM workshops – not everything can be explained through PCM. But, luckily, many things can, and this can really make a difference.

What is your favourite personality and behavioural tool and why? Please write below in the comments box.

Interested in taking part in my next Open PCM Workshop?

Twice a year, in spring and autumn, I organise Open PCM Workshops. I split the course into 6 half-day sessions, with several days in between so that we have time for homework, practice and insights. Feedback received shows me that the retention levels increase significantly in this format.

Register Today for my next PCM Open Workshop.

[i] Taibi Kahler, Ph. D, “The Process Therapy Model. The Six Personality Types with Adaptations”, Taibi Kahler Associates, Inc., 2008, pp. 28-29

Featured image credits: Designed by pch.vector / Freepik

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