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Talent Dynamics RSS Feed Blog Category: Talent Frequencies

Nicci’s Call: Being A Successful Exhibitionist

exhibition

By Nicola Bonfanti - Talent Dynamics for Sales

There are opportunities to exhibit all year long if you look for them but make sure you have a Trader on your stand to get the best from the event.

You’ve seen those exhibitions where smartly suited Dynamo people are sitting behind their stand talking amongst themselves or on their phones so as not to waste time but end up not engaging with many people.

They are there to be seen but not necessarily to serve. They will go home thinking the exhibition was a waste of time and money!

Or the stands where the Blaze exhibitors have wide smiles outstretched arms asking “Can I help you?”  The obvious answer is “No, thanks” and scuttle on as you don’t know what they do or what to ask for.   They will wonder what they did wrong!

But if you want to have a busy exhibition stand, lots of people to talk to, have contact details for new prospects, give a good impression of what you do to a lot more people than you could at a networking event and maybe even make some money by selling your goods and services, make sure a Trader is on your team who will focus on the client and make sure the follow up is done!

Whatever profile you are, here are 3 of the many ways to leverage the value  of your exhibition stand:

  1. Don’t try and sell anything. 
  2. Give something valuable in return for a visitor’s business card 
  3. Make your stand an interactive experience

1. Don’t try and sell anything.

Don’t expect or try to sell anything immediately. You are there to build a relationship first and foremost so spend time engaging with your visitors, finding out more about them. Have some form of short survey to gain valuable market information, have something free to give them that tells them more about you, your services and your products.    Make sure any freebies relate to your products or services.

Too many people have something to give away that is just a waste of money as it is not relevant to your business nor memorable.

However, make it easy for your visitors to buy should they choose to by having special offers for the exhibition only as some people buy on impulse if you have explained your products and services well (there is a different mind-set  between selling something and enabling a visitor to buy something and that difference could cost you the sale!).

Your Trader team member will make sure you have all the paperwork and everyone is followed up.

  • What questions could you use to engage and draw visitors in?
  • If you choose to have a free gift, what does it say about you? And what benefits does it give your visitor?
  • Plan special offers to give on the day.

2. Give something valuable in return for a visitor’s business card

Adding new names to your database is a key objective of being at an exhibition but visitors are more reluctant to give away their details these days for fear of being bombarded with irrelevant emails. So you have to make the give-away prize or prize draw something really special.  Think about what would appeal to you ideal client – a spa break? An high octane experience like driving an F1 car or flying in a wind tunnel? Or one of your VIP programmes?

They also want to know that they will be sent valuable information not sales chasers.

  • How will you encourage and reward visitors for giving you their contact details?

3. Make your stand an interactive experience

In order to engage with your visitors, you want them to spend time with you on your stand, so give them something to do while they are there.

Traders are all about the customer experience:

  • Guess the price
  • Competitive game
  • Photo booth that gets retweeted and talked about, e.g. when I was promoting sales programmes I had cardboard cut-outs of sales superheroes people could pose in which got our stand talked about and invited to other events
  • What is your key selling point?
  • How can visitors have an experience or an insight of what you do in a few minutes on your stand?

Where will your exhibition be in the next few months?


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DT’s Tower: Steel Margins

ruler

“Uh oh!  A Lord is going to be talking about profit margins” *run away*

Those aren’t the kinds of margins that I’ve been thinking about this month (honestly!). What I’ve been thinking about mostly are ‘margins of error’.

Nobody’s Perfect

It is a fact that none of us are perfect (sorry to break that to you).  I have yet to find anyone who has not confessed at some point in their life that they have made a mistake or things haven’t gone as planned.  In fact most of the interesting stories and the biggest learning come from when things don’t go right. :)

I’d also argue that the majority of us, regardless of profile, have a degree of perfectionism about us.

Perfectionism… A Friend of Procrastination

From what I’ve been thinking there are two reasons for perfectionism.

The first is about the desire to get things right.  This is most clearly evident in the Dynamo profiles of Mechanic, Creator and Star.  Intuitively they know that something isn’t quite right and like having an itch they can’t scratch they can delay doing anything until they get it right.

From the Mechanic wanting to ensure every little detail is perfect to the Star who insists that something doesn’t look right.  The problem they often encounter is because the source of their perfectionism is intuition they can’t easily explain or identify what is wrong.  They just ‘know’.

The second reason for perfectionism is insecurity.  This is the area of the Tempos, the Deal Makers, Traders and Accumulators.  Likely they will have a (full) list of points drawn that they will work through.  Unless a time limit is imposed it is likely that they will keep finding fault and making small ‘tweaks’.

Obviously both types of perfectionism isn’t good in order to get things done.  Don’t get me wrong, I am a Lord so I can appreciate the drive for perfectionism.

The devil is in the detail after all!

Delegation and Margins of Error

So are Blaze profiles guilty of perfectionism?  Well, they can be but as their talent is people they generally know the right people to get things done (and they are the ones who are usually perfectionists).  When they give feedback they can oscillate between Dynamo ‘doesn’t look right but I can’t put my finger on it’ or Tempo ‘here is a list’.

Now we come to the Steel profiles.  And an interesting thing happens, I think.  I have been accused of perfectionism.  I have also been accused of pragmatism.  Now both can’t be right can they?  What I have realised in terms of thinking about the way I look at it is that I never expect 100% (I might desire it but I know reality gets in the way most of the time).  I do sometimes oscillate between ‘something not right’ and ‘the list’.  Yet, in order to resolve either of these quandaries there is the margin of error.

So, for me, there is an acceptable margin of error.  That can shift depending on what is being worked on but I’d give it a range between 80% – 99%.

I don’t stick my finger in the air and go I’m in a 99% mood today but rather it is based on several variables:

1. How much time is left before planned completion?

2. Is there flexibility in terms of time after completion to improve?

3. How serious is the margin of error?  A seatbelt with a 20% margin of error is a bit different from a business card with a 20% margin of error :D

It annoys the HELL out of the Dynamos I work with and confuses the Tempos no end.

Yet ultimately, this margin of error allows for decisive decisions and getting things done.

Do you have margins of error?  Or are you a perfectionist?


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DT’s Tower: Handwriting, Star Wars and How to Play Nice

587857_97257344

I found this video during my travels across the internet and it got me thinking (always dangerous).  Graphology is currently considered a ‘pseudoscience’, that is something that purports to be scientific but actually has little proven scientific research behind it.

And yet the idea of graphology has made its way into popular culture with everything from Sherlock to CSI: Crime Scene Investigation at one time or another using graphology to get an insight into the personality of a suspect.  The idea that ‘who we are’ can be analysed is a powerful one.

But Why?

One of the things that everyone struggles with at some point is knowing who they are. There is no objective standard to use.  As individuals our point of view is heavily biased, sometimes towards the positive or sometimes to the negative.  We ask those who know us well their opinion but again, there is the danger of a hidden agenda.  Either people will focus on positives to spare our feelings, or sometimes might focus on negatives to score points.

There is little point asking people who don’t know us… as they don’t know us :D

So we turn to analysis of the effects of our personality.  The individuals that we are leave impressions on the environment around us, the people we interact with, the choices we make… perhaps even our handwriting?  Our impressions on a page.

If we can understand ourselves, we can accurately assess our strengths and compensate for those things that challenge us so we can improve and develop.

‘Know Thyself’

Very noble.  However, our own brains get in the way of making full use of this knowledge. We instinctually need to classify and categorise. This is why in psychology there is an important difference between personality types and personality traits.

Types categorise.  People are either/or.  So someone is either introverted or extroverted.  Traits acknowledge a sliding scale.  People can be place on a line between ‘fully introverted’ to ‘fully extroverted’.  Because of problems with consistency and how people answer psychometric tests, personality type theories have fallen out of favour in psychology (just for your information, MBTI is a ‘type’ instrument).

There is another issue with this objective analysis.  Ironically, we can struggle to come to terms with the idea that something other than ourselves can tell us who we are.  We resist the categorisation of any instrument even if it is a ‘trait’ instrument ESPECIALLY if it goes against our own self image.

For example, on the Buzzfeed personality tests of Facebook I keep getting R2 D2 when I am CLEARLY Han Solo!

The other thing to bear in mind (and I fall into this trap myself) is we look for how the objective test can be wrong, even in the most minute detail… like when I come out as something else other than Han Solo ;)

On a Sliding Scale

Although the Talent Dynamics test has 8 personality profiles, it isn’t a ‘type instrument’. These are simply handy, easy to remember reference points.  Behind the types is a mix of 4 energies (traits) that scales from 0 – 100%.  It is the mix of these traits which can be used to objectively ask questions of yourself and allow focused development with an understanding of strengths and challenges.

But none of us are an island and the final issue with psychometric testing is the isolation that many tests engender.  It is focused on you.  One of the most valuable things you can take from a psychometric test is how you relate to others.  Even Carl Jung, pioneer of “Psychological Types”, came up with the concept in an attempt to reconcile his own perspective with those of Freud and Adler, whose relationship had grown… ‘tense’ due to differing perspectives.  In effect, the start of psychometric testing was to learn how everyone could ‘play nice’ (dazzling use of technical jargon there, DT) despite the tensions of extroversion, introversion, intuition or sensation.

“In attempting to answer this question, I came across the problem of types; for it is one’s psychological type which from the outset determines and limits a person’s judgement.” ~ Carl Jung

Ultimately, all the self-knowledge in the world will be largely useless if we don’t understand how we can use that knowledge of ourselves to improve our personal and professional relationships.


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A Profiling Workshop – Sysmex Middle East’s Story

platelets

Saad Kayali, the Managing Director of Sysmex Middle East, a subsidiary of Sysmex Europe GmbH, had his Talent Dynamics profile done and liked the results so much he asked Susan Castle, Performance Coach & Flow Consultant, to do the same for the entire top level of his company!

There were six managers at this level:

  1. the Managing Director,
  2. the Marketing Director,
  3. the Logistics Director,
  4. the HR Director,
  5. the Sales Director
  6. the Operations Director.

As global leaders in vitro diagnostics and automation services, the managers seemed to have no immediate issues. All communicated well with each other and as a team were seamless.

Uncovering Issues

The issue was they tended to focus on areas they knew they were brilliant at – for example the conception of ideas, but they had blind spots in other areas, i.e. putting things into action.

On completion of their individual Talent Dynamics profiles the explanation became obvious.

Out of the six people on the team, four were Mechanics including Saad, one was a Lord and the other was a Creator profile.

This lack of Blaze and Tempo energy explained why they were good at brainstorming, but not so strong at following through. They were very tunnel focussed and tended not to go for bigger targets those with a more Blaze energy would instinctively do.

Talent Dynamics Workshop

Saad then asked Susan to run a leadership development training session to decide what changes, if any, needed to be made to their management set-up.

“I wanted the Heads of Departments to understand their own profiles, master their own talents as well as ensure that these talents are put into good use for the team and the company. Having a team that is well-honed and performing at their best can only be good for business.”

During the workshop they looked at what was stopping them from setting bolder financial targets. Was it a Dynamo, Tempo, Blaze or Steel problem? The managers ended up with about 30 or 40 different things blocking them.

After narrowing down these blocks further, the underlying core issue became apparent:

the truth was there was no one in that room with the specific kind of business power or ability to deal with Blaze or Tempo challenges.

What Kind of Energy Are You Missing From Your Team?

Each of the directors left the workshop motivated and full of clarity. They had a deeper understanding of what was stopping them from achieving higher targets and more importantly, who to go to in order to solve any issues and help achieve these new goals.

Susan says, “Sysmex found, through the test, that the management roles fitted them quite well but the workshop helped them to leverage these strengths by highlighting them and showing them how they could be leveraged to improve team communication and performance while reducing stress.”

Saad is now planning another workshop for the next level of management in the Sysmex team and we’ll keep you posted on how much of a difference this one also makes!

 “I think Talent Dynamics is a great opportunity to maximize the harmony within the team, to get the needed group mindset and perspectives of “what else we can do”; and thus develop a healthy change culture, opting always to challenge our own achievements and parameters to yield further milestones in the journey of success.”  - – Saad Kayali, Managing Director of Sysmex Middle East


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The Dynamic Dozen of Real Estate Sales

Real Estate Team Behind with Blonde Woman in Front Holding Keys and Sold For Sale Real Estate Sign Isolated on a White Background.

In the highly competitive world of Real Estate, a high functioning sales team is vital, followed closely by quality listings to satisfy their hunger to sell. One high profile South East Queensland agency turned their struggling sales team full spin into a dynamic force within months, using the guiding force of Talent Dynamics profiling techniques.

Profiled by Rebecca Mitchell, Talent Dynamics Master Trainer and Performance Consultant from Brisbane, this team of twelve real estate professionals achieved some surprising results.

From Flagging Sales…

Sluggish sales and unmet targets were an early warning sign that the team were falling out of step, despite a strengthening property market.

The General Manager knew every individual had the qualities of a great salesperson, yet somehow their motivation was lagging their ability. So he brought in Talent Dynamics Master Trainer, Rebecca Mitchell to decipher the cause of their failing KPI’s.

Each rep took a Talent Profile test. The GM had assumed all profiles would be Stars– known for their prowess as promoters and delivering results, or Supporters – able to reap sales with their Blaze energy leadership. But the Talent Dynamics profiling results proved different.  From the eight reps only three were Stars and one a Supporter, complemented by a Deal Maker, two Traders and one Accumulator.

By understanding how their Talent Profile powered their performance, the team identified changes that would take them into rapid flow.

But what quickly turned their team into a “dynamic dozen” was working together to change how each person went about selling that also complemented the others.  Their new goal: to increase revenue by $100,000 over the following 6-12 months.

The Stars came up with the strategies to help the Deal Maker, Traders and the Accumulator, instantly inspiring and reducing competition between them. Each eased into action – and their natural flow.

To Flogging It!

Over the following weeks, the sales team completely changed their focus and responsibilities. The Deal Maker shifted to partnering with other agencies and financiers in the region.  The Trader took over the ‘walk ins’ and incoming phone and website enquiries. The Accumulator concentrated on telesales and follow-up sales, as well as reporting weekly sales figures. The Supporter took over the Office Manager role and recruited a small team of three commission-only sales agents who worked closely with her – running information evenings, connecting with the local Chamber of Commerce, promoting their office and running monthly events.

The three Stars continued with traditional listing strategies by marketing direct to home owners. They also featured at the monthly events, each month in turn, which further developed them into their own area of expertise; one in apartments, one in standard priced houses and the other in executive homes and house and land sales.

Within six months the team had exceeded their initial $100,000 target! They are now set to increase their bottom line by $500,000 by the end of this year.

This shining real estate firm has jettisoned their motivation and their performance to new levels by embracing Team Dynamics at its best.


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DT’s Tower: The Importance of Scale

measure

See that picture of a tape measure?  It will be important.

I’ve been thinking and writing a great deal about getting things done lately.  The reason being is that I’ve been laying the groundwork for growing the business.  I thought it might be useful to share some of my thoughts with this.

Growth means growing in size.  Seems obvious?  On the surface maybe, but me being a Lord I get my kicks out of the detail.

Growing Pains

So what exactly is ‘growing’?  Well turnover and profit would be a really nice answer.

But that’s not the answer I’m afraid.  That is the measure.  You can only tell that you are growing if turnover is increasing.

“Ah ha DT, I hear you cry.  You left out profit”

Well yes because profit is a result of how well you are doing what you do.  If you are an example of efficiency your profit will be higher but you are not necessarily growing.

True growth means that you are doing more of what you promise to do, what you are good at.  Where you deliver value.

So you have the same amount of time.  But you are doing more (hence why I’ve been thinking about getting things done).  I’m not a fan of working 24/7.  I need recharge time.  My iPhone gets better treatment than me sometimes! :D

So I think true growth means ‘making time’.  Feel free to argue.

Making Time

“Hang on DT, I’ve been with you so far but making time?  Its a universal constant! You can’t make it”

Well, no.  Grant me a little hyperbole.  When I say ‘making time’ what I’m looking at are the two sides of the Talent Dynamics square.

Systems allow you to save time and improve efficiency.  In essence you make time by doing what you do more effectively.

People allow you to add time and improve how much can be done.  In essence you make time by employing people to do ‘stuff’ (dazzling use of technical terms).

Trouble is… you can’t grow effectively by focusing on only one side.

The downside of systems (unfortunately there are some) is that they simply exist.  Something needs to go in one side… data, projects, money, ideas etc, to be turned into something else… graphs, completed projects, more money, results etc.

If you don’t have enough to go in to the system, the system is not going to be as effective as it can be.  Many systems sit in our businesses not being used effectively.

The downside of people (and as an introvert I can talk at length) is that they increase costs.  Unlike a system which only has a set up time, people take recurring time and money to get the best out of them.  Yet they think for themselves!  They don’t just exist.  If something is going wrong, they’ll spot it.  If something needs to be done, they’ll do it (as long as they are fully engaged with what they are doing).

The Importance of Scale

Remember the tape measure?  That is one way to demonstrate size.   But it doesn’t really show what need to be done to get there.  Hence the old style weighing scales.

For true growth, the importance of scale is balance in ‘making time’. Systems to ensure that the minimum effort is expended for the maximum result (and quality) and people to ensure that more can be done whilst keeping variety, initiative and values in the business.

If you are on one side of the Talent Dynamics square you’ll be better at one side than the other, systems or people.  That doesn’t mean that you can ignore the balance!  Far from it!  You actually need to put some thought into the opposite of what you are good at.

A systems heavy company won’t need many people but the people they do have need to be tip top to manage the systems and add a bit of diversity into the production line.

A people heavy company will need lots of simple systems to ensure that everyone is pointing and moving in the right direction.

What do you think?  Is the secret of growth in getting the balance right?


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A Labouring Lord – Rauri’s Story

jujitsu

by Dianne Caldwell

When I first spoke to Rauri, he was 18 years old, working part-time with his Ju Jitsu trainer teaching students and supplementing his income by working in a laboring job he didn’t particularly enjoy.

So I asked him what he would truly love to do…

Rauri’s voice shone with excitement.

“What I’d really love to do is move away from the job I don’t enjoy so I can teach Ju Jitsu full-time to teenagers….”

It turned out Rauri had been practising Ju Jitsu since he was 12 and was now highly trained. He credited both the physical and mental benefits of the sport as completely transforming his life.  Ju Jitsu was far more than just a sport to him.

“Ju Jitsu is not just a martial art, it’s a way to change your life, and I want other children to experience the same amazing life and health benefits which Ju Jitsu brings.”

There was just one problem: he didn’t know how to turn this passion into a successful full time career.

Lord Profile

 

Rauri’s profile was a LORD: 40% Steel. 24% Dynamo. 24% Tempo. 12% Blaze.

There were 2 obstacles stopping him from seeing his full potential and turning his passion for martial arts into a reality. These were his age, just 18, and the peer and societal pressure to “get a regular job”.

Together, we sat down and looked at his desired outcomes, then we established a series of key action steps for him to take to move toward his dream. These small, detailed tasks aligned with Rauri’s Lord profile perfectly.  Once he could take the dazzling dream and break it down into bite-sized chunks, the whole process was a lot less daunting.

First Rauri would contact his Ju Jitsu trainer and ask for support and at the same time, he would also put together his plan.

Getting Fast Results

Here’s the funny thing when you move toward your goals. Everything conspires to help you! In this case, Rauri’s trainer just so happened to know a teacher who was really keen on having martial arts training at her school. The next step was easy.

Rauri submitted his proposal to the teacher on the board at the school & after just 2 – 3 short weeks after shyly vocalizing this idea to me, his semester program is now in the process of being approved!

When Rauri reported back to me he was bursting with joy.

“I’ve done it!” he said.  “I’ve achieved my dream!”

Rauri’s big dream was there all the time, but for him it seemed as insurmountable as climbing Everest. All he needed was some reassurance that this dream was 100% achievable, and then some specific guidance on how to break the dream down into less daunting tasks.  Once Rauri was clear on the way forward he achieved clarity, and that was down to the help of Dianne Caldwell, the ‘Flow Consultant’ and the Talent Dynamics profiling tool.

Rauri’s story is a perfect example of how the Talent Dynamics Profile Test & Debrief has empowered a young person to know & understand their strengths to a point where they take the appropriate action they know will get them into flow.

The plan is in progress and we will update you again on the ongoing success of Rauri’s actions!

We’ll leave the final words to Rauri…

Firstly thank you so much, you have, and will continue to have, my gratitude for all the help you’ve given me. It’s been absolutely wonderful and I’m so glad you have taken the time to provide me with all your advice. I started with an idea but no knowledge or ability to bring it to life. Talent Dynamics gave me the direction in which to head and the impetus to do so, by providing clear action steps and manageable goals as well as excellent and highly personalized coaching along every step of the process. Can’t recommend it enough to anyone with a desire to realize their ideas and dreams.”


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DT’s Tower: Who You Gonna Call?

ghostbusters

Unfortunately the answer isn’t always “Ghostbusters” which turned 30 this month.

Shameless use of popular culture segue over, the point of this blog is to pick up where I left off last time with my Delegation Game.  I thought it might be useful to show how I am attempting to solve a problem that would take me out of flow very quickly if I’m not careful.

I might have mentioned :) but I’m a Lord.  As a raging introvert (extroverts can be raging, why not intorverts?) the ‘people’ side of the Talent Dynamics square is not my strong point.

In fact according to my profile report I have 0% in Blaze energy.  I’m reposting the square as proof.

Impressive I know.  This really makes it hard for me to delegate but even more so… it makes it hard for me to know who to call.  My first instinct is to do the task myself.  My second response is to think about training or learning how to do it if I can’t do it at the moment.  My third inclination is to park it until I have time to think about it…

… which never happens.

My Solution

Despite being introverted I am known to speak.  Sometimes at length.  Building on the flowchart that I shared last time I am identifying all the things that need to be done which I can’t do or don’t have time to do.

I’m using a spreadsheet so I’m definitely in my flow here.  I’m then matching people who I can talk to who are either already part of my team, have some expertise in the area or show no signs of struggling with this particular item.  Then I work down the list (making it a task which comes easily for me) and:

  1. See if someone in the team is interested in helping
  2. Investigating solutions with those with expertise
  3. Asking how others who don’t seem to struggle solved the problem

Now there are still gaps.  But whereas before it was a mountain of ‘stuff’ now I have specific things I need help with.  During networking or casual business conversations I can talk about these issues and in all likelihood I will either get suggestions OR (best scenario) I will happen across someone who can solve it.

The point of all this is that I now ‘know’ who to call AND have a process to follow to stop delegation tripping me up in future (in theory).

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GHOSTBUSTERS!


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Una’s Spotlight: Another New (Tax) Year

rubix cube

By Una Doyle

Sometimes life just throws you a curve ball and there’s not really very much you can do about it.

That’s what happened to my partner and myself this January when he started to feel unwell a couple of days into the New Year. Roll on a few weeks and he was rushed into hospital seriously ill and since then it’s been a long recovery, now about 95% complete.

So it’s now April, the start of a new tax year and we’ve decided that this will be our New Year.

A chance to start afresh. A chance to put in place the plans we were so excited about back in late December!

There are times in life when you have to admit you are not in control and this was definitely one of them. How do you react when life throws curve balls at you?

  • Get mad
  • Lie down and cry
  • Carry on regardless

Well I briefly experienced each of those at one time or another, however they’re not necessarily constructive!

So I thought it would be useful to look at this from a Talent Dynamics perspective taking each of the energies in turn to see what could be helpful in your professional and personal life.

Spirit

Trusting in each other, honest and open communication and having each other’s back was essential during this period. We never lost sight of our primary purpose during this time which was to get him well enough to come home and then well enough to fully live life again.

“How clear are you and your team on your purpose? Do you prioritise your activities accordingly or just do the most urgent tasks, reacting to those who shout the loudest?”

Dynamo

Motivation

I am a Star profile with pretty equal Dynamo and Blaze energies. When the ‘proverbial’ hit the fan I immediately went into emergency task mode. Being able to instantly come up with ideas to solve problems is useful – as long as it’s not overdone.

“How effective are you and your team at problem solving? Do you spend time to establish what kind of problem it is that you have?”

Innovation is not always the solution… For instance in this particular situation Blaze and Tempo elements turned out to be more important.

Blaze

We both had to ask for help a lot more than usual. It was important to have the support of family and friends both emotionally and practically. In fact, it was the practical help that was required the most!

Thankfully we were also able to call upon some team members we’d worked with previously to help out with the business. And a cleaner was definitely essential too ;)

The vast majority of doctors and nurses that we dealt with were fantastic communicators and that made such a massive difference.

How substantial is your support network? In the event of an emergency who could you call upon? How effective is communication in your organisation and/or family?  What could you do now to be prepared with team members and/or freelancers to stand in when required?

Tempo

Once the initial heart-stopping emergency was over it was a case of constantly reprioritising and rescheduling personal and work activities around his recovery. It took a while for me to realise how much time it actually took to not just visit but travel to and from the hospital and to do (or delegate) the activities he would normally do.

“How aware are you of how long things really take?”

This is important to manage your own workload as well as when working with team members. If you don’t know, simply use a kitchen timer or one on your smart phone to measure frequent activities. If you haven’t got high Tempo energy in your profile you may be surprised by what you find!

Use this knowledge to help you understand the return on investment you get from your activities, consider whether they’re really necessary and if they are, who is best placed to do them.

Steel

Understanding the measures being used to mark my partner’s recovery was very helpful, otherwise we would have been completely in the dark about progress.

“How effectively are you measuring progress on the projects and processes that are most important to you?”

Also related to Steel was the adaptability required by my partner (a Lord profile) to adjust to his circumstances while in hospital and then recuperating at home. Lots of uncertainty, noisy and unfamiliar surroundings and people didn’t make this easy, so it was important for me to provide support by being physically there and communicating effectively to alleviate that.

This applies to changes you may be looking to implement in your workplace!

“Do you consider those that may have high Tempo and/or Steel energy that will find change more challenging, no matter how much they may buy into the concept of it?”

Be sure to connect, listen and constantly over-communicate before, during and after the change.

Have you been dealt some rough hands recently and if so how did you handle them? I’d love to hear your views, please comment below.


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DT’s Tower: Divergent, Profiling and Talent Dynamics

Divergent

I recently went to see the film “Divergent” in the cinema.  The plot in summary:

“In a futuristic dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions: Abnegation (selfless), Amity (peaceful), Candor (truthful), Erudite (intelligent) and Dauntless (brave), based on their personalities. Beatrice Prior is in Abnegation, the faction that looks after the poor and the factionless, as well as runs the government; though she has always been fascinated by Dauntless.

Young 16-year old citizens have undergone aptitude test using a serum to indicate which faction they would really fit and which they would need to choose on the Choosing Ceremony.   Beatrice’s test has resulted different attributes of several factions (Abnegation, Erudite and Dauntless), which means she is Divergent. Since Divergent people can think independently and government cannot conform their thinking, they are considered threats to the social orders. These are the reasons why she needs to keep her true test results a secret.”

The film deals with one of the big objections to profiling, individuality and conformity.  How can a test capture the unique characteristics of an individual?  Can you really reduce a person to a category?

The short answers are “it can’t” and “you can’t”.  But underlying these questions is a more powerful question.  ”Why take a profile test in the first place?”

In the film the answer is because that is how society is ordered.  On the surface this does seem like a good idea, and fits with Talent Dynamics’s philosophy.  People doing what they are good at are more productive and happier.  If you can understand yourself to a greater depth, you will grow.

Now, in our society it is not compulsory to take a profile test.  So why take one?  Again it is down to understanding yourself and others.  In Talent Dynamics it is about finding out your route to Flow, a route to a more focused, productive and stress-less work/life.

The film’s profile offers no recognition of individuality.  If you don’t conform to one of the profile types (or Factions) then you are dangerous as the profile is there to control you and society.

And this is where people often get unstuck.  The Talent Dynamics profile is not an end point but a starting point.  It’s not trying to put you in a box.  Here’s why:

  1. Your profile is made up of characteristic ‘energies’ Dynamo (Creativity), Blaze (People), Tempo (Timing) and Steel (Information).  Within the profile is an energy frequency or mix as EVERYONE is different they will have a different mix of these energies.  The profile is simply a trend towards the strongest energy.
  2. Sometimes a profile will resonate with you more strongly than the test result.  A profile debrief with a Talent Dynamics consultant can help challenge the results and unpick why you are drawn to another profile.  It could just be that the profile is wrong!
  3. The profile describes how you work, not who you are.  I am a Lord in a creative industry… doesn’t mean that I can’t be creative but my approach is more methodical and slow than a Creator (though I have quite a bit of Dynamo in my profile).  Your profile can help you find a role you are better suited to OR let you explore different ways of working to the strengths of your profile that will naturally help you into Flow.
  4. Although many people who take the Talent Dynamics profile test have an ‘a-ha’ moment when they get their results, the profile is not a quick fix or a one shot answer.  It is a road map that can help you learn more about what makes you tick, guide you through challenging situations or when making important decisions.

Oh … and the film is pretty good too! :)

How about you?  Do you try and conform to the Talent Dynamics profile or are you ‘divergent’?  How do you approach this?


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