Posted: 15 Jan. 2020 7 min. read

Welcome to Business Chemistry

Welcome to the Business Chemistry blog. If you stumbled across it whilst searching for the periodic table online we’re afraid we can’t help. We don’t know a great deal about organic chemistry; however, we do know about people, particularly in the work place. Business Chemistry was specifically designed for use in the work environment to help you create stronger bonds and more meaningful interactions with colleagues.

Our blog will provide a platform to explore teamwork, and provide leadership guidance and insights into why effective relationships are pivotal to our work. We will be writing from our own experiences, but will also draw on the work of Dr Suzanne Vickberg, also known as ‘Dr Suz’, Deloitte’s own social-personality psychologist. Dr Suz studies how people’s thoughts, behaviours, and preferences are influenced by who they are and the situations they’re in.

There are so many questions and themes to explore through the blog, and we encourage you to ask questions of your own, like “why isn’t everyone in my team as interested as I am in all the minute details”, or “how come my teammate can come up with the most creative ideas on the spot while I really struggle?” And perhaps most importantly, what can we all do to understand and embrace our differences so we can move forward as a cohesive team?

Over the last three years we have been using Business Chemistry to help client teams explore how the mix of perspectives brought by their individual members influences their work together. It goes without saying that each of us is unique, but do you find you share more in common with some people than with others? At Deloitte we use Business Chemistry as shorthand for talking about these similarities and differences. And why is this so important? Because this understanding allows us to make our relationships stronger, and enhance our work together.

Business Chemistry identifies four primary patterns of characteristics:

•The Driver pattern is characterised by a quantitative and/or technical perspective, logic, directness, and competitiveness
•The Integrator pattern is distinguished by empathy, a focus on relationships and consensus, and a comfort with ambiguity
•The Guardian pattern is exemplified by practicality, reserve, a structured approach, and a focus on details
•The Pioneer pattern is typified by spontaneity, adaptability, imagination, and a fondness for brainstorming

Which one are you? Find out here!

Of course none of us fits perfectly into any of these categories; we are a unique combination of all four. Yet most of us will find that we strongly associate with one or two of these patterns. Understanding which pattern someone identifies with gives us an insight into what makes them tick, and how we can strengthen our relationship with them.

For simplicity, we’ll refer to these four patterns, and to people who fit into them, by using the simple labels of Driver, Integrator, Guardian, and Pioneer. We trust that you will understand that we’re using a shortcut here. When we refer to someone as a Driver, what we really mean is a person with lots of characteristics that fit into the Driver pattern, as well as other characteristics that fit better into the remaining three patterns. While the former isn’t perfectly accurate, the latter is prohibitively awkward.

So, what are you waiting for? Explore the four types now and start building more effective relationships.

We love talking about Business Chemistry and we hope you will too. We also hope that in time we’ll get a chance to know a bit about you, so please join in the discussion by commenting below or contact me directly via the links below.

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Jess Dooley

Jess Dooley


Jessica founded and leads Deloitte’s Business Chemistry client practice for the UK and North South Europe member firms. A business behavioural tool designed to help teams communicate and collaborate better for greater success, Business Chemistry is a proprietary self-assessment tool used to support boards, executive, and senior leadership teams across the FTSE, private, and public sectors. She helps teams understand each other’s working styles; hold honest conversations; be better leaders of diverse teams; build plans for enhanced collaboration; team deliberately for a common purpose; and build trust quickly to achieve strategic and organisational goals. The book ‘Business Chemistry: Practical Magic for Crafting Powerful Relationships – a guide to putting cognitive diversity to work’ was released in the US and UK in May 2018.