Everything you need to know about an Altruist

The Altruist leader

Altruists get their sense of satisfaction from being supportive. So how exactly do they lead their teams to victory?

As a leader, Altruists are proactive in bringing the team together to complete work by “the book,” within accepted standards and policies, and on-time. They can be cautious with delegating tasks due to anxiety of things being done the right way. They are also respectful of authority and considerate of others.

Below is a list of strengths and cautions when an Altruist is in a management role.

Leading strengths
  • Proactive
  • Collaborative
  • Organized
  • Interested in the development of others
Leading cautions
  • May struggle with delegating tasks
  • Will struggle going against existing processes
  • Slower to make decisions that impact the team

But it’s not just about knowing how you lead; you also should be aware of the individuals you manage and the Team Type they form. This allows you to tailor your leadership strategies based on the people you’re actually managing—and use your strengths as an Altruist to your advantage.

Let’s say you’re an Altruist who’s managing an Exploring Team. Being an Altruist, there is a chance you might be in the quadrant directly opposite of this team, like the example picture to the right, which means you’ll generally have competing values. Don’t panic! Different personalities don’t innately lead to failure. Understanding this difference in opinions, however, is a crucial step.

Take a look below at some points of friction to be aware of. Use these to learn how you can use your strengths to lead a team that doesn’t directly align with your Reference Profile.

Leading an Exploring Team as an Altruist

When an Altruist is leading an Exploring Team, they may struggle to adapt to the team’s daring and risk-tolerant nature. You may encounter areas of friction, but there are ways you can help your people stretch their behavioral drives and make the team feel like magic.



The Exploring Team’s preference for flexibility and innovation may clash with an Altruist’s “by the book” style. The leader may become frustrated that the team is not following the process and guidelines that have been set to protect the organization from risk.

An Altruist’s desire to work methodically and make decisions carefully can clash with the Exploring Team’s desire to take risks and innovate quickly. It can be frustrating for team members if they feel they’re not being given the freedom they need to produce results.

Altruists can often struggle with timely decisions if the team will be heavily impacted. Yet Exploring Teams are expert problem-solvers that can take action quickly. That sense of urgency can help push Altruists, so they can put ideas to action rather than worrying about what the outcome might be.

Exploring Teams may find themselves generating ideas or taking risks that don’t align with your current objectives. Yet Altruists tend to focus on practical ideas and take calculated risks supported by data. An Altruist can help Exploring Teams add process to their work style when appropriate.

Based on the benefits and areas of friction that can arise when having a differently aligned team, come up with strategies that will help you lean into your strengths. For example, Your team’s passion for ideation and innovation may lead to conflict over whose ideas to commit to and prioritize. Try to bring the group together to discuss what ought to be the main focus now, or better yet, take pieces of different ideas to create a path forward.

So, we understand who we are, where we fit into a team, and how we can lead other teams as an Altruist. When it comes to leading, though, there is much more to consider. You also need to think about what Strategy Type your team needs to accomplish its goals.

Do you feel prepared to make sure your team feels like magic rather than causing constant friction? Want to learn more? Check out our two workshops around building and cultivating teams that work like a dream.

Copy link