Misidentifying Threes and Sixes

These types are not often mistyped, but do have some similarities. Both can be very focused on work and performance, but can play very different roles in the workplace. Threes see themselves as soloists: they cooperate with others, but want to excel, to be the best at what they do. They need recognition and acknowledgement for their accomplishments, and as long as those are forthcoming, can be tireless workers. Sixes are hard workers, too, but unless they are moving to Three in stress, tend to feel awkward about taking the spotlight. (“Everyone takes pot shots at the guy out front.”) Sixes work hard to ingratiate themselves with their superiors, to build up security, and because they want to convince others of their dependability. Threes tend to be smooth and composed: Sixes tend to be more nervous and awkward, although sometimes endearingly so.

Another common source of mistyping here comes from the sexual instinctual variant of type Six (see PT, 426-430). In short, some Sixes focus on cultivating personal magnetism and attractiveness like Threes, but their insecurities about their desirability matters is far more visible. Further, Threes tend to project a cool, emotional reserve, while Sixes project more volatile and intense feelings. Compare Threes Tom Cruise and Whitney Houston with Sixes Tom Hanks and Bonnie Raitt.