There are four distinct types of social personalities, also known as social styles. The theory is based on the works of Dr. David Merrill. Using factor analysis, which was similar to how IQ scores were originally determined, he provided us with a way of measuring social styles based on varying degrees of people’s assertiveness and responsiveness.
On the assertiveness scale, a lower scoring number means a more reserved and slow-paced personality. A higher scoring person tends to be more outgoing. Following this model, assertiveness is seen as ask vs tell. On the responsiveness scale, a lower number signifies an inability to control one’s display of emotion, such as a person who wears their heart on their sleeve. A higher responsiveness number shows a more stoic person, or someone who has a strong poker face.
When examined together, these two ranges create what is called the SOCIAL STYLE model. It is comprised of four quadrants, each representing a unique social type that extends beyond just a typical personality assessment. This model examines how humans think, act, and react when dealing with people in all forms of social settings. Unlike the Myers-Briggs test which explores a person’s sense of self and their intrapersonal personality type based on patterns of perception and judgment, the social style method is used to decipher a person’s interpersonal awareness and how they interact in social situations.
The Amiable social style is one of these four types. They are considered friendly and supportive of everyone around them. They are people-pleasers and hate to impose or bother other people so they often shy away from asking for favors. They also tend to show their emotions quite easily and be affected by anything going on around them, even if it isn’t directly aimed in their direction. Their goals are more relationship-motivated, as opposed to being objective- or self-esteem-oriented.
If you’re easy going and simply want to live in peace, you’re considered an amiable type of person. You don’t want to upset anyone or rock the boat. You want to avoid conflict whenever possible. Non-confrontational people tend to be amiable, and they are sympathetic, helpful, and caring. They thrive in careers that offer less stress and minimal decision-making than higher level positions.
There are ups and downs to having this personality style. The need for personal security means amiable people are often dependent on others to make them feel safe, instead of seeking it from within. This need for external praise or love or acceptance means there is a greater chance of being hurt or let down by people. Amiable individuals will also have trouble owning or running a business since drama and stress aren’t things they naturally gravitate towards. They would be better suited as a worker bee who interacts with customers such as massage therapist, cashier, or career counselor.