Life comes alive with color. We see color in bands of dazzling beauty. We harness color in the things we create, we identify with and connect with color.
So why not design a company with color? Why not use color as a language to help us better understand and balance the dynamics of an organization?
Two years ago my partner (now wife) and I both took the HBDI® test which claimed to be a “powerful psychometric assessment that defines and describes the way you think and process information.” Sounding similar to Myers Briggs and other personality tests, we thought it could help us cut through the ignorance, communicate better, and get shit done faster.
But with colors! HBDI® divided the diversity of human thinking types into 4 colors (blue, yellow, green, and red) across 2 axis. The system was simple, balanced and beautiful.
Then we got into practicing it. For two years we discussed everyone in terms of colors, especially ourselves. We used colors to help us make decisions and understand our motivations. “The blue in me says…” and “where’s the green when you need them?”
We learned about humans and our tendencies. It helped us empathize. It also gave us a language to talk about what we value.
Go, find balance. – Mr. Miyagi, Karate Kid
But it has also led me to wonder: does a balanced team foster success more than an unbalanced team? Is there something special that happens when all 4 thinking types combine equally? Like when all the colors of visible light combine into white?
My red brain tells me yes–we need all types of people. My blue brain says maybe–test it. My yellow brain imagines it to be true–just go for it. My green brain says the idea is too vague–plan it out.
Since I’m mostly Yellow and Red… I’m plowing ahead with this idea. Help wanted: Greens and Blues to keep the project on track and grounded in reality.