Assessments Feed

Me vs. Me: The Battlefield of the Mind

Have you ever felt as if you weren't normal because you seemed to fight with yourself all the time? For instance, you might battle between making a quick decision and wanting more data. Or you may be the life of the party and then later wish you hadn't been so trusting when you divulged all of those funny stories about yourself.

Worry no more about having a split personality.

There is nothing wrong with you, you just have inner or "Me-Me" conflict.

I often see conflicting behavioral and/or motivational styles on my clients' assessments and experience plenty of my own inner conflict between goal achievement (tasks) and relationship building (people).

The good news for the mindful conflicted soul is that inner conflict makes it easier to see things from a variety of perspectives.

Embrace your inner conflict as a strength that helps you adapt easier than others!

When it comes to personalities, with or without inner conflict, the most important thing is knowing ourselves inside and out so we can adapt our behavior when necessary to obtain the best outcomes. Self-knowledge is power, especially in the heat of the battle of life.

How well do you know your instinctive behavioral patterns? What are you doing with that knowledge to leverage who you are, where you are? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

If you want to learn more, a complimentary consultation might benefit either you or your team. What are you waiting for? Click the link below to schedule your consultation today.

Making a Change? Assess, Then Act

Self-knowledge plays a significant role in a leader's effectiveness. Knowing ourselves intimately so we can recognize our strengths, values and shortcomings enables us to lead authentically with confidence, and equips us to adapt swiftly to new roles.  

How well do you know what makes you "tick"? If a new job opportunity came your way, how sure would you be that it was the right job for you? How quickly would you be able to identify the skills you need to learn and the skills you need to "lose" that might hinder you in your new role?  

Following are three steps you can take to leverage knowledge about yourself and your situation in order to become more effective.  

1. Objectively assess yourself and your current situation. What would your perfect work environment be? What motivates you? What talents do you bring to the table?  

2. Identify the gaps between who you are and what your situation or new role requires. If your new situation could speak for itself, what would it say it needed from you? What would need to change with you to deliver on the situation's "request"?  

3. Create an action plan for closing any gaps between you and your new role/situation.  

Don't take change or new responsibilities lightly. Assess yourself and the situation before you take action. If you do, you'll save yourself a lot of time and frustration in the long run - for everyone. 

NOTE: To view the first post in this series, "Survive the Role Transition: Be Strategic", click here.

Need help identifying your strengths or getting started in a new role? Contact me today for a complimentary consultation to see how assessments or role transition coaching might help take your skills to the next level.


Thoughtful Thanks Giving

Have you ever noticed how some people only give others the types of gifts they enjoy without considering what the other person might prefer? Have you ever been the recipient of that BBQ grill for Christmas when all you really wanted was a gift certificate to your favorite day spa?

Just as holiday gifts need to be personalized in order to be received with enthusiasm and genuine gratitude, so must the gift of "Thanks" for a job well done. Have you ever thought of how you liked to be thanked or complimented? What was your response when you received a compliment that struck the wrong chord with you?

The next time you thank someone for a job well done, consider first what words they'd receive as praise,  rather than what you'd want to hear. Determine their behavioral style and phrase your compliment accordingly. 

For example, following are some typical styles with suggested compliments:

  • Dominant, goal-oriented "D" - Be specific by saying "You saw what needed to be done and did it."
  • Influential, social "I" - Praise them publicly and tell them, "You're amazing!"
  • Steady, supporting "S" - Quietly let them know how you appreciate their follow-through and perseverance.
  • Compliant, analytical "C" - Reinforce how their analytical ability caused you to avoid  future complications.

How might you change the way you thank the people in your personal or professional life?

This week, I'm challenging you to sincerely compliment 5 people for something they've done for you or your organization in the way they would want to be recognized. Perhaps they might just start thanking you.

Other DISC related posts:

Leadership and DISC: Who is the Best?

DISC Styles: Are you a Tortoise or a Hare?

The Dominant Director: Tony Allessandra Video



Note: If you want to dig deeper in your understanding of how to best communicate with others so you can increase your productivity, contact me for a free consultation today.  That's what I do.

Competitiveness: The Leadership Edge

Competitiveness is defined as tenacity, boldness, assertiveness and a willingness to win in all situations.  Naturally competitive people have a leadership edge in the professional world because the world is a competitive place. Those who aren't so inclined often feel left behind their more tenacious counterparts.

So are less competitive people destined to be second class leaders? Absolutely not. For the less driven at heart, competitiveness can be learned. And as with all strengths, being competitive has its drawbacks too.

We all have our issues.

I know all too well that being competitive can be both a virtue and a vice. My parents can tell you stories of my temper tantrums as a little girl when losing at miniature golf, bowling, and board games on family game night. My competitive nature has caused many a frustration in me and those around me, but it has also been the source of my greatest successes in life and in leadership.

When harnessed properly, competitiveness can result in sustained progress toward a goal. Competitive people are:

  • able to clearly see and define goals
  • instinctively appreciative of competition and the associated reward for winning
  • able to see critical path elements toward reaching goals
  • willing to learn new skills and adapt attitudes.

How competitive are you? Do you make everything a win-lose type of game or do you rarely "keep score" because it just doesn't matter? If you don't know, ask your friends about yourself.  They WILL know. Or, contact me for help with an assessment tool to help you develop that leadership edge. I love to help people win.

Tips for Developing Competitiveness

  • Define three main goals in both your personal and professional life. Plan three action steps for each goal and follow them through to completion.
  • Learn to lose. How can you acknowledge that your time to "win" is further down the road? How might this change your attitude about a current "loss"?
  • Thoughtfully answer the following: Why do I deserve success? What can I do to be more deserving of success?

Now its your turn.  Do you have anything to add to this post?  Share with us by clicking the comment link below!

The Dominant Director: Tony Allessandra video

Assessments are great tools to develop self-awareness about our behavior. I love the DISC assessment for behavior analysis because each of the styles is easily recognizeable and applied into our lives once you know the DISC "language". Its great to know how to treat people how they want to be treated. 

Today I want to share a short video I found today at Roberta Hill's  Assessments Today blog. In this video, author and speaker Dr. Tony Allessandra, co-author of People Smart,  provides a glimpse into the mind of the first style in the popular DISC assessment tool, the Dominant Director (D). You will learn about their strengths, weaknesses and even see two actors playing the part of the "D". 

As you watch the video, keep in mind that a lot of us are blends of the various styles D, I, S, or C. Additionally we have all learned to adapt to our environment at various levels.That's why, as Dr. Allessandra says in this video, no two D's (or any of the other styles for that matter) behave exactly alike.

When you are finished watching, consider the following:

  • Who do I know that behaves similarly to the "D"?
  • How would a "D" want to be treated?
  • If you are a "D", what did you learn? What behavior modification would most impact your life?

Remember, all four DISC styles have their unique strengths and weaknesses. When we get to know ourselves better and recognize the behavior styles of others, we can greatly increase our effectiveness with people.

Questions or comments about what you've just learned? Please leave a comment below or contact me directly if you would like to hear more about how an assessment might benefit you!

Other DISC-related posts: 
Leadership and DISC: Who is the best?
DISC Styles: Are you the tortoise or the hare?

Making the Most of Your Strengths

All of us are known for something, whether it be for accomplishments, passions or behaviors. One commonality we all share is that most of us want to be known for our strengths rather than our weaknesses.

The tricky part is that any strength overextended becomes a weakness. For example, a dominant director could come across as bossy and egotistical. A fun-loving  communicator might also be known for being a poor listener or for disorganization. A detail-oriented analyzer could be seen as too picky or suffer from "paralysis by analysis". The easy-going stabilizer may spend so much time building consensus that nothing gets done.

For our strengths to help rather than hinder us, it is important to become intimately familiar with them. There are three keys to making the most of our strengths and maximizing our potential. We need to:

  1. Know our strengths.
  2. Recognize how others might respond to our strengths.
  3. Critique our strengths by analyzing how and when they get overextended and manifest as weaknesses.

How familiar are you with your strengths and their impact on others? How do you get "overextended"? Feel free to share your thoughts in a comment so others can learn from you. Self-knowledge is foundational for becoming a person of influence. Get to know yourself better today for a more successful tomorrow.

Coach's Challenge: Make a list of your strengths this week and after each label, identify how the attribute might be perceived in a negative light. What do you need to change?

If you would like help in identifying your strengths/weakness and modifying your behavior to enhance your communication/leadership influence, coaching with some assessment tools may be for you. Contact Janna Rust at [email protected] for more information.

How Thick Is Your Lense of Self?

Just because we can physically see doesn't mean we can't also be blind. While most clients agree that the assessments I use are at least 85% accurate, each time I coach someone a behavior or strengths assessment, at some point in the debrief, I still hear the comment, "I don't think I'm really like this". The stark reality is that other people often see our behaviors better than we do!

In today's fast-paced culture, most of us don't take the time to intentionally get to know ourselves and how our behavior impacts other people. We tend to look at the world through the fog of self, living on autopilot and assuming that everyone automatically thinks the same way we do. When others behave in ways we personally would not act, we deem them irrational or ignorant, resulting in more internal frustration and outward conflict than necessary.

The good news is that clarity trumps emotion. With a little education and observation, we gain an understanding of ourselves and others. We learn that different isn't bad or "stupid", just different. Better communication ensues and much of the conflict melts away. Finally, we see things as they truly are.

How well do you konw yourself? How do you react when someone tells you something about your behavior that you don't want to hear? The next time it happens, ask yourself "How could that be me?" and you might just learn something new about yourself.

Leadership and DISC: Who IS the best?

People come in many shapes, sizes and personalities. Because we are all different, we tend to compare ourselves to others. However, the danger in making comparisons is that we often fail to notice our own giftedness, choosing instead to focus on the areas where we fall short of someone else's skill set.

There is no such thing as one best, all-purpose leadershp style. The best leaders are those who understand what their specific situation calls for to be successful and either adapt accordingly or recruit other qualified individuals to supplement their skills. I help my clients learn how to adapt better by encouraging them to "try on" other behavior styles and helping to identify areas of there work they can delegate.

According to Allesandra and O'Connor's PeopleSmart, four basic leadership styles correspond to the four core behavior styles in the DISC assessment.

  • Direction of others through dominance/directness (D)
  • Interaction with others (I)
  • Service to the goals of others (S)
  • Self-direction through compliance (C)

From these descriptions can you identify your primary style? Chances are, you are a blend of one or more of the above. Can you imagine a work or life situation where each one of these styles might work the best or not at all?

The most important thing to remember is that we are all different and uniquely gifted to carry out the "job" we are born to do. We will all lead in our own way. Get to know yourself better. Being coached through an assessment process is one way to do this. Then, seek out activities or job roles where you can spend the most time where you excel so you can be the best YOU!

What are your thoughts as to the best leadership style? In what ways have you adapted successfully to be more effective? What will you do with what you've learned?

Hiring Decisions in a Flooded Job Pool

Most managers have to make hiring decisions from time to time. In today's economy you would think that managers would be able to make better hiring decisions with so many unemployed people to pick from, wouldn't you? Wrong. Just because the perfect candidate is out there in the job market doesn't mean managers can spot them in the crowd.

So what makes hiring decisions so hard?  Bias! To here more about how to better select employees for your next job opening, check out this article at TTI, my assessment provider's blog, entitled "Flooded Candidate Pool, Still Making Wrong Hires?...Why?.

After you read the article, please come back and share some of your worst hiring mistakes!

I can honestly say that I wish I knew then when I was a manager what I know now as a coach and Value Added Associate for TTI. I am passionate about helping people find the best job fit for their personalitiy, skillset and passions. If you need help with your next hire, your own career decisions or redistributing and developing talent in your current organization, please contact me for a complimentary consultation.

Happy decision making!