Posts tagged: Clarence Thomson


By , June 4, 2009 4:42 pm

The Enneagram is a well-regarded personality measure dividing people into nine distinct personality styles: One: Critic, Two: Helper, Three: Performer, Four: Individualist, Five: Observer, Six: Loyalist, Seven: Enthusiast, Eight: Challenger, Nine: Peacemaker.

While other Enneagram experts have identified Obama as an Enneagram Nine or Three , expert Clarence Thomson of Enneagram Central stands by his decision that Obama is an Enneagram One: A Man of Law.

Thomson describes the Nine Personality Styles, including Enneagram One: The Critic. Each description describes the undeveloped and developed aspects of each style:

“Ones search for what is wrong and how to fix it. When stuck, they are rigid, moralistic and angry. When free, they are supremely moral, compassionate and reliable. Their life is about goodness: its absence or presence.”

Here are excerpts from Thomson’s article in the Out of the Box Coaching Newsletter :

“President Obama, in my opinion, is a style One. Ones tend to be idealistic, guided by clear convictions of right and wrong, and work oriented. Every style has certain strengths and limitations. Style One is, in one way, unduly humble. Ones have a tendency to erase their personal feelings and unite, almost merge their personal agenda with the demands of an ideal or law or tradition or principle.

If you ask Ones what they think, you will get your answer consciously or unconsciously filtered through principles that are larger than themselves and may be inherited from a book or tradition.

It is probably not accidental that Obama would study constitutional law. He will make his decisions based not as much on personal convictions as on the wisdom of the law. He will be a lawyer all day long. He may have some charisma, but he will not be ‘chatty’ or intensely personal. He will have charisma, but not really panache.”

And later in the article:

“Obama’s idealism is not based on evidence. It is based on an inner conviction that right can and must prevail. This is a two-edged characteristic. On the one hand, it enabled him to work as a community organizer with defeat scribbled on every wall and etched in every defeated face. He kept going against the evidence. This could get him into trouble if he has a policy that is not working. He may believe it must work, even against the evidence.”

Learn all about the Enneagram Nine Styles at Thomson’s website and take an Enneagram questionnaire, and also visit his colleague Mary Bast’s Enneagram and Coaching website,  Break Out of the Box, for a wealth of descriptions helping you identify your personal style.

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