Business Enneagram for Growth

Leaders and Influencers

Everything we do is based on motivation and energy. Business enneagram gives leaders more insights on how to enable motivation and lead energy.

As different persons are motivated and driven by different things, it is necessary for leaders to grow their self-awareness to lead their teams better.

Understanding one’s own leadership paradigm and those of others offer a fast track in driving change successfully. The more we understand ourselves and others, the better we operate and collaborate. Enneagram is a profound tool for understanding one’s natural focus, typical expectations, leadership gifts, challenges, and areas of development in terms of leadership. It helps leaders to understand themselves at a very deep level.

Below you will find descriptions of all 9 leadership styles. First, how this leader thinks and describes themselves and then a few essential elements.

Self-awareness is the beginning of the self-mastery and growth.

Which of these 9 leadership styles resonates with you the most?


The Idealist

“I lead by setting clear goals and describing how to get there. I create consistent processes, standards, responsibilities and reporting relationships. I think that the role of the leader is to ensure that everything is performed in a fair, responsible, and accurate manner. I have high standards and I always try to perfect things. I hope that my efforts and the fact that I strive for perfection will be seen. Others find me fair but sometimes critical and controlling, even though I mean well. At my best, I inspire others to take action with my strive for renewal and high quality. I prefer actions that are ethical, precise, well planned, and consistent.”

Values – Ethics, quality, goodness

  • Accurate and perfection-seeking
  • Logical and systematic
  • Principled and impartial
  • Responsible reformer

The Supporter

“I lead through people. I recognize people’s strengths and needs and connect with people naturally.  The leader’s job is to help to motivate and support people to succeed in their work. I believe that everyone should be treated in a kind manner. I dislike selfishness and don’t typically articulate my own needs strongly (or even recognize them). I hope that my contribution and readiness to help will also be seen and appreciated, even if I do not bring it up myself. Others find me nice and supportive but sometimes lacking directiveness. At my best, I support people to find their strengths and take action. I prefer actions that take others’ feelings, desires, and the greater good into account.

Values  – Compassion, love, giving

  • Helpful and warm-hearted
  • Supportive and generous
  • Friendly
  • People-oriented
  • Optimistic and make people enjoy working


The Performer

“I lead by setting clear goals and by ensuring efficient action. I know how to influence people, and how make things roll with my can-do attitude. I feel that the leader’s job is to ensure results and success. This is done by clear roles, responsibilities, and concrete plans. I assume my key people are effective and ensure good performance in their own teams and units. I hope that others will also see my professionalism and good performance. Failing is not an option for me. Image is important for me. Others find me solution-oriented but sometimes impatient and abrupt. At my best, I engage and inspire others to work hard towards set goals. I prefer actions that are focused, concrete, result-oriented and both efficient and effective.”

Values – Efficiency, productivity, success 

  • Ambitious
  • Hardworking
  • Competitive and result-oriented  
  • Efficient and practical enabler


The Individualist

“I lead by establishing a deep connection with others and by clarifying a common purpose and a vision. I naturally see what potential there is in my people and organisation. I want to achieve and create meaningful and beautiful things. As a leader, I believe that it is possible to inspire every person with compassion and bring their own unique gifts together around a shared, deep meaning. I hope that others will also see me, my uniqueness and genuinely meet me. Others find me expressive and empathic but sometimes a bit sensitive and self-absorbed. At my best, I provide an environment where people feel welcomed to express themselves authentically and to pursue greater mission together. I prefer actions to be creative, purposeful and fulfilling.

Values – Beauty, uniqueness 

  • Creative and aesthetic
  • Authentic
  • Intuitive
  • Human-centered
  • In-depth and emotional


The Specialist

“I lead objectively and logically. I make sure that we have sufficient knowledge and resources. The leader’s task is to reach the goals through clear structures, well-functioning processes and adequate resources and knowledge. I hope that everyone comes to meetings as well prepared and that we will solve problems fact-based without much emotion. Others find me organized and objective but sometimes a bit detached and overly private. At best I combine knowledge, provide detailed plans and guide others calmly towards the right direction. I prefer actions that are thought through, well planned and well organized.”

Values – Knowledge, wisdom 

  • Analytical
  • Logical
  • Calm and objective
  • Independent
  • Private


The Loyalist

“I lead by combining planning, preparedness, and solution-orientedness. It is important for the leader to create an environment where solutions are sought to the organisation’s problems. The leader’s job is to ensure that everyone is prepared, prepared, knows what is expected of them, and performs their duties as agreed. I wish everyone would assume their responsibilities and be worthy of trust. And see how loyal and solution-oriented I am.” 

Values – Loyalty, commitment, responsibility, preparedness 

  • Loyal and responsible
  • Hardworking and dedicated
  • Thoughtful and prepared
  • Caring
  • Prepare for challenges and see the risks
  • Structured


The Visionary

“I lead inspiringly and innovatively. I see opportunities and create visions and new departures. Resistance to change is a foreign concept to me – change is an opportunity. As a leader, I believe that the eye must be on the future and that new business opportunities are everywhere. I wish we would keep things positive and move on, and not immerse ourselves in negativity or excessive depths.” 

Values – Variation, enthusiasm, joy, positivity 

  • Innovative
  • Inspiring
  • Flexible
  • Future-oriented
  • Optimist 


The Challenger

I am strategic and grab the big picture intuitively. I love to tackle big challenges. I have a lot of energy and high ambitions. As a leader, I expect everybody to carry out their tasks and drive their organisation forward. When everybody does their share, we can make a big impact! I hope that things will remain under my control and that everyone will really assume their responsibilities and act fairly. Others may find me quite demanding and sometimes too direct. At my best, I empower people to take action. I prefer actions to be strategic, assertive, bold, and forward-moving. 

Values – Justice, truth, strength, fairness 

  • Strategic
  • Determined and committed
    Straight and assertive
    Tough and powerful.  
  • Protective and fair


The Mediator

Enneagrammi tyyli 9

“I lead by creating consensus and harmony. I’m diplomatic and I’m listening. I create other people’s consideration and peace in the team. As a leader, I believe that people want to be heard and understood. I believe in the power of difference and different perspectives. I create a harmonious working environment and motivate people to work together naturally. I wish I could keep the right action and that everyone would be fine.” 

Values – Balance, harmony, peace

  • Diplomatic
  • Accepting
  • Consensus-oriented
  • Inclusive
  • Unpretentious
  • Peaceful 

About Enneagram

The Enneagram is a multi-layered system that offers in-depth insight to individuals, groups and collectives. It does not box in people, but rather opens a pathway to self-discovery and greater personal awareness and collaboration. The Enneagram creates self-awareness and uncovers the patterns of behaviour that sub-consciously drive us to act in certain ways. Working with the Enneagram empowers individuals to take responsibility for their own behaviours and growth, from a greater understanding of why they act and react the way they do.

The Enneagram refers to Greek words enna (”nine”) and gram (”something written or drawn”). There are nine numbers, types, in the Enneagram model. The symbol of the Enneagram is a circle. The Enneagram is, however, much more than just the 9 types, like centers of expression/intelligence, lines, wings, and more.

More sources:

Harvard Business Review – Seeing Through Your Blind Spots

To facilitate a team discussion in psychological safety, Tony Schwartz, from the Energy Project comments as follows: “We used a tool called the Enneagram — a personality typing system akin to Myers-Briggs, but for my money, much richer, more penetrating and more practically useful. The Enneagram posits that there are nine separate personality types. Each one is marked by a central defense or preoccupation — a specific lens through which each of us reflexively and narrowly views the world, in order to feel safe.” Tony Schwartz.


Heli Backman and Nina Karlsson are certified Enneagram practitioners and teachers. They are also Senior Members in a global network – Enneagram in the Business Network by Ginger Labid Bogda. 

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