PERSONALITY BASED GOAL SETTING

Our personality impacts everything we do; how we respond to pressure, how we network, socialize, and react when there is an emergency. Our personality is something that we cannot escape. When I reflect upon those who are successful, I see bold individuals who are assured within. They know what they are good at and they maximize upon those strengths. Successful people, regardless of their industry, are always boldly self-aware.

With the beginning of 2019, the New Year provides us with an opportunity to build upon the experiences and lessons learned from the previous year. I don’t believe we ever truly start over, instead; we build upon our achievements and/or the lessons learned from past failures and shortfalls. In retrospect, one of the things I’ve gleaned over the past couple of years is that our personality identifies our strengths and weaknesses. It directly affects our ability to achieve our goals and meet our objectives.

As a DISC Behavioral Consultant, I’ve learned to identify personality types through consultation, and help others develop goals that coincide with their character. In doing so, individuals maximize their opportunity for achievement.

These 3 actions will help individuals streamline their personal goals:

  • Tailor your conversation based on personality traits. This gives you the ability to make adjustments within the discussion to lead the path forward.
  • Generate goals that motivate the person to put in the necessary effort to achieve each one.
  • Identify areas to stretch the individual and achieve things that will take a focused effort.

By successfully implementing these 3 things into the development of goals, I believe we give people the ability to be successful and achieve more than they might expect.

So how do we set goals based upon a person’s personality? To answer this question, I will identify methods that reflect the DISC personality styles in general. I’ll use the behavioral traits and the typical strengths and weaknesses of each personality style. Let’s take a look at how to set goals for each personality style.

Dominant

People with dominant personalities are direct, decisive, problem solvers, risk takers, and self-starters. People with a strong dominant personality are hard-charging, get-it-done kind of people! I identify with this particular personality type. I tend to set very ambitious, lofty goals. However, if I don’t see immediate results, I’ll quickly lose motivation.

People you identify as having a dominant personality need to have goals that meet the following parameters;

  • Identify a few more than required. If you want 3-5 goals, a dominant person will set 7-10.
  • Make the majority of the goals short-term. This serves as motivation to accomplish many things.
  • Set a couple of long-term goals with the expectation to endure until the end.
  • Each goal must be clearly identified and the timeline for completion well established.
  • Establish regular one-on-one follow-ups and progress meetings.

When developing goals for a dominant personality consider the following:

POSITIVE CHARACTERISTICS

  1. Autocratic in teams and will rise to the top in a crisis
  2. Good at providing direction and leadership
  3. High assertiveness
  4. They have a clear idea of their ambitions and goals and will push hard for accomplishment
  5. Function well with heavy workloads
  6. Very competitive attitude
  7. Welcomes new challenges
  8. Tend to follow their own ideas

AREAS FOR GROWTH

  1. LEARN TO LISTEN MORE AND SPEAK LESS
  2. Gather consensus on decisions
  3. Don’t act alone
  4. Learn to answer the question “why” when asked about decisions and proposals
  5. Work on body language and tone of voice when dealing with frustration
  6. Focus on developing sincere personal relationships
  7. Can intimidate others
Influential

People with an influential personality are enthusiastic, trusting, optimistic, persuasive, talkative, impulsive and emotional. They are just pure FUN! They are the life of the party and are typically the ones we talk about after the Christmas party. They love to set goals and dream about the things they want to achieve.

These fun-loving social characters need to have goals that meet the following parameters:

  • Harness their enthusiasm when identifying goals
  • Identify goals that will move the company forward and acknowledge their value
  • Clearly define the steps to achieve each goal and have them focus on each stage before moving onto the next
  • Set smaller goals
  • Identify the timeline for each goal
  • Prioritize each goal for the company and the individual
  • Establish regular one-on-one meetings to verify progress and determine the next steps for successful performance

When developing goals for those with an influencing personality style, consider;

POSITIVE CHARACTERISTICS

  1. Great communicators who are both influential and inspirational
  2. Have the ability to motivate others
  3. Great advocates of change and deal well with change themselves
  4. People are drawn to them, thus creating a great opportunity to lead others
  5. Positive attitude
  6. Great at brainstorming and visionary projects

AREAS FOR GROWTH

  1. Impulsive in decision making
  2. Can be slow to action (a lot of talk, but little action)
  3. Need to exercise control over actions, words, and emotions
  4. Need to talk less and listen more
  5. Tends to over-promise
Steady

The steady personalities are good listeners, team players, possessive, steady and predictable. They are understanding and friendly relationship-based people. Goal setting usually means change is coming, which immediately causes tension for a steady personality—because they don’t like change.

If you see yourself as a person with a steady personality or will be working to set goals with someone described above, consider:

  • Goals that establish step by step directions with a clearly defined plan for achievement
  • Establish the benefit for achieving each goal
  • Needs more time to develop their goals
  • Set timelines for each goal and hold them to it

Consider the following when developing goals for the person with a steady personality:

POSITIVE CHARACTERISTICS

  1. Supportive and natural relationship builders
  2. Grounded in reality and common sense
  3. Talented multi-taskers
  4. Patient
  5. Loyal
  6. Even-tempered
  7. Peacemakers in groups and teams

AREAS FOR GROWTH

  1. Struggles with change and making adjustments
  2. Can be overly agreeable
  3. Tends to put other’s needs before theirs
  4. Need to be more direct in their interactions with others
  5. Their pace tends to be slow, thus causing them to miss deadlines
Compliant

A person with a compliant personality is accurate, analytical, conscientious, careful, precise, meticulous and systematic.  Those with a complaint personality are very focused on procedure and making sure things are done the right way. They don’t have a problem with setting goals, but they do need help prioritizing. A compliant personality wants to accomplish EVERYTHING!

To set effective goals, a person with a compliant personality must consider:

  • Start the process early!
  • Focusing on goals that are important to YOU!
  • Ensure each goal is practical and detailed
  • Create clear, identifiable goals that establish their role within the group, department, and organization
  • Establish data-driven goals that focus on details others may not see
  • Stretch the person by developing one or two visionary goals

As you consider developing goals for the compliant personality, consider the following:

POSITIVE CHARACTERISTICS

  1. Instinctive organizers
  2. Excellent at creating and maintaining systems and processes
  3. Consistent in their approach
  4. Will see projects through until completion
  5. Strive for a diplomatic approach
  6. Strive for a group and team consensus

AREAS FOR GROWTH

  1. Tend to be critical of others
  2. Consider other’s ideas and methods
  3. Need to speed up to help the team or group accomplish their goals
  4. Work on focusing more on building strong relationships
  5. Make faster-informed decisions
  6. Take more risks

Final Thoughts

Each one of us has a unique personality style. Sure, we can put people in “personality” buckets, but that only helps to identify our approach. As leaders, we must know our coworkers and ourselves well enough to understand what motivates them and how they react to different situations. Knowing a person’s personality style can proactively help you and your employees make adjustments. Consider the information presented and strive to achieve your personal best and the best from your employees in 2019!

Denis is an Executive Director at the John Maxwell Group, is a certified leadership coach, trainer, keynote speaker, and DISC Behavior, Consultant. He is a passionate person of influence committed to teaching and communicating practical and relevant influencing techniques.  His unique passionate and emotionally driven style resonates with many, creating a desire to become an effective leader.  

You can contact Denis at dbaker@leaderinfluence.net for information on coaching, training, DISC Behavioral consulting or to be an inspirational speaker at your next event.

READY, FIRE, AIM, The Initiative Concept for Leadership Abundance and Success

Ready Fire AimIf you know what to do, then just do it!  I could probably stop right there and have the shortest blog I’ve ever written.  But that would be boring.

As a leader, one of the most frustrating things is to have someone on my team not take the initiative to make things happen.  Instead they sit back and wait for direction, or constantly need my approval that their path or ideas are right.

I want people that are willing to take risks, learn from their mistakes and accomplish what they never thought could be done.  I encourage and expect my staff to embrace the idea of READY, FIRE, AIM!  A concept I learned years ago and I have refined recently.

Let me break the term down:

  • READY – Identify what needs to be accomplished and evaluate what it takes to fully and completely accomplish the task or idea.
  • FIRE – Go do it!  Don’t wait.  Be the swoosh in NIKE and “Just Do It.”  For my inner circle, there are very few times where this concept wouldn’t apply.
  • AIM – Once you “Do It”, then tweek as needed.  If you did your due diligence in the READY phase, there should be very little need to correct things.

These three simple words can create extreme success in your leadership and success in the workplace.

Here are three examples of people who embraced the concept of READY, FIRE, AIM:

  1. Elon Musk – When you make millions off of an internet company like PayPal, the world generally expects you to, well, create and make more millions off of another internet company. But Elon Musk’s dreams lay elsewhere: Rather than follow a more conventional career path, Musk took the money he had made at PayPal and invested it in two of his own highly innovative startups, SpaceX and Tesla. Though his attempt at operating these two ventures at once nearly sent both companies into bankruptcy, it seems to have ultimately paid off—today, both SpaceX and Tesla thrive.
  2. Sylvester Stallone – With a baby on the way and too little money to pay the rent on his Hollywood apartment, Sylvester Stallone sat down and wrote the screenplay for Rocky in less than four days. Producers loved it and offered him big bucks to bring the story to life—but Stallone, as down-and-out as he was, refused to take any offer if he wasn’t allowed to play the lead role in the film.  Rocky ultimately ended up pulling in millions of dollars and skyrocketing Sly into fame.
  3. Travis Kalanick: Uber – Travis is a great example of Ready, Fire, Aim.  If he become discouraged with failure, Uber wouldn’t exist.  Founded the company Scour Inc., a multimedia search engine, and Scour Exchange, a peer-to-peer file sharing service. Two years later, the company would come under fire from several big name music and film agencies for copyright infringement, forcing Scour to eventually succumb to bankruptcy.  In 2007, Kalanick and Garrett Camp founded Uber. After facing some early competition and funding concerns, the ridesharing app is now the most widely used app of its kind. Kalanick created three companies; one failed, but that did not stop him from taking the risk.

Taking initiative is an important part of most any job and is critical to increasing your influence and ultimately your leadership.  However, the reality is that not many of us will not end up as successful as Elton, Sylvester or Travis.  But I can say people who take initiative, are people I want in my inner circle.  And I bet that is the way many leaders feel.

I agree with Conrad Hilton said, “Success seems to be connected with action.  Successful people keep moving,.  They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.” 

Don’t keep talking about it, just “DO IT.”

swoosh

Can’t We All Just Get Along? 6 Principles to Solving Conflict

Look conflict is noEmotional discussiont fun, it’s not pleasant and quiet frankly it  becomes frustrating and irritating.  However, conflict is inevitable and it’s actually crucial for success. Without conflict, one continues on a path of mediocre performance.  However, if  we address the conflict, the clash of ideas, positions and personal preferences can become fuel for change, innovative thinking and thought provoking new ideas. Unresolved conflict will destroy personal relationships and create a division within an organization or team.

John C. Maxwell said; “People naturally see themselves in the light of their intentions, but they measure others according to their actions.”  Man that was me.  I use to avoid conflict all cost. Well that’s probably not entirely true.  I think it would be more accurate to say, that I use to instigate conflict when I could.

Most leaders don’t respond well to conflict.  In fact, I believe most leaders will avoid it and choose the easiest, rather than the most effective way to handle it.  In John Maxwell’s Guide to Managing Conflict”, he listed six typical responses to conflict.  I found these to be right on, so I want to share them with you.  How many have you used?  Personally, I used all six at some time in my personal life or professional career.

  1. Win at all costs.  It’s like a shootout at the OK Corral. It’s quick, brutal, and destructive.
  2. Pretend it doesn’t exist.  Even if they hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil, evil will still exist. It will simply grow unsupervised.
  3. Whine about it. Playing the victim doesn’t cure conflict. It just irritates everybody on the team.
  4. Keep score. People who keep a record of wrongs can never start fresh. And nobody can ever truly get “even.”
  5. Pull rank. Using position never really solves conflict. It merely postpones it.
  6. White flag it. Quitting is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

But, how can we address conflict and avoid these failed responses?  First, I think you have to truly care about the conflict, reason for the conflict and the person you have a conflict with. Second, we need to fully understand and comprehend the facts surrounding the reason for conflict.  Once we show we care, indicate we fully understand the facts surrounding the situation and we are prepared to approach a resolution from a humble perspective, then I believe you can effective solve the conflict.  How?  By fully implementing and following the 6 principles listed below.  Again, these were taken from John’s “Guide to Managing Conflict”;

  1. Confront a person only if you care about that person. It is more productive to go into a confrontation keeping the other person’s interests in mind.
  2. Meet together as soon as possible. When conflict arises, human nature is inclined to avoid it and procrastinate regarding resolution. The reality is, that by putting off confrontation, the situation can only deteriorate further.  Get together face-to-face.
  3. First seek understanding, not necessarily agreement. The person who gives an opinion before he or she understands is human, but the person who gives a judgment before he or she understands is a fool. The truth is, you cannot reach understanding if your focus is on yourself.
  4. Outline the issue. Be positive, describe your perceptions, state how this situation makes you feel, and explain why this is important to you. Engaging in this process without emotional heat or bitterness is essential.
  5. Encourage a response. Try to build a dialogue – be sure to let the other person talk while you actively listen. Maxwell talks about the following observations when confronting people:
    • 50% of the time people don’t realize there’s a problem.
    • 30% of the time they realize there’s a problem, but they don’t know how to solve it.
    • 20% of the time they recognize the problem and don’t want to fix it.
    • A solution can be had 80% of the time merely by engaging and seeking a response.
  6. Agree to an action plan. Be sure the plan clearly identifies the issue and spells out concrete steps that will be taken. The action plan should include a commitment by both parties to put the issue to rest once resolved.

Learn to identify the potential conflict and make adjustments in your approach, thinking Fight, two fists hitting each other over dramatic skyand desires.  However, if conflict occurs, then it must be addressed.  Following the 6 principles above will help ensure the conflict is fully, effectively and completely resolved.  Dealing with conflict won’t hurt relationships, in fact it strengthens the bond between people and teams.

John C. Maxwell said, “Successful confrontation usually changes both people, not just one.”  I agree.  Every conflict that I have effectively solved has made me a better leader.  I encourage you to resolve conflict quickly.  Don’t let it build!

 

 

EXCEED YOUR INDIVIDUAL GROWTH WITH A MENTOR

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The longer I continue in leadership positions, the more I realize how much I really don’t know. In fact, I’m made aware of this each and everyday. I’ve learned; the more I think I know, the more I don’t know and the more I don’t know, the more I need to know! However, one thing I do know, knowledge needs to be transferred to others.

Everything you learn and receive from others is not yours; you are simply a processor of information and it must be passed on. Whether it’s a recent graduate, a technical person, or an experienced professional, I realize that my job as a leader is to transfer knowledge and experience to them. That’s what drives me.

I rFotosearch_k13876036.jpgeflect upon my parents, youth leaders, pastors, coaches, and career professionals who imparted wisdom, knowledge, and experience to me. Without them, I wouldn’t have known how to navigate through life’s challenges. Mentors have been influential in life, impacting both my marriage and my career. In fact, I can recall an individual whom I still lean upon for guidance in my safety career. He has directed, advised, and even scolded me when needed (unfortunately that’s often). Additionally, he has pointed out when I’ve had ideas of significance or times when my attitude needs an adjustment. Everywhere I turn and in almost every conversation, there seems to be an opportunity to either mentor someone or to be mentored myself. I came across this statement the other day; It’s hard to improve when you have no one to follow but yourself.” To me, this quote reiterates the belief that influence develops through experiences with others.

Identifying the right person to advise you is equally important to what you learn. So, how do you identify and chose a mentor? Below are 10 questions to ask before considering a personal mentor in your own life.

  1. Are they a leader? – John Maxwell concludes, “It takes a leader to know one, show one and grow”If they haven’t experienced it, done it, or taught it, I question whether they are ready to mentor. Identify those who are successful in their professional or personal endeavors. Look for someone who is respected and viewed by others as a leader. When identifying a mentor, seek someone whom you regard highly. You don’t have to aim too though; if you’re pursuing politics…do you need the President of the United States as you mentor?
  1. Are they open and available? – A mentor must be willing and open to share their experiences (the good and the bad) as well as personal insight. After all, mentorship is a transfer of knowledge. Will they be available to meet on a regular basis? Mentorship is best accomplished through face-to-face interactions.
  1. Can I trust them? – Is the person trustworthy? Do they possess integrity, ethics and the same moral compass you desire? Do they have wisdom to make sound decisions and solve problems? It’s through knowledge and experience of seasoned mentors that problems and situations can be resolved in a correct manner. A wise mentor can guide you through a situation with only a few words; this in turn allows growth through your own experience.
  1. Are they transparent, egocentric, or arrogant? – It’s important to note that even mentors make mistakes; however, does that person readily admit his or her shortcomings to you? When identifying mentors, seek those who are willing to share their experiences, even if some are unpleasant.
  1. Do you “buy into” what this person is about?  – Plain and simple, do they influence you in the right way? In other words, you must be of the same mind before allowing your mentor to influence. I know many successful professionals, but for one reason or another, I simply cannot consent to what they say or how things are done. Maybe it’s in the way they treat others or how tasks are accomplished. Don’t chose a mentor based solely upon their accolades, examine the person as a whole.
  1. Do they honor their commitments, have the respect of others, and consistently model excellence? – A mentor must honor their commitments. If they continually cancel appointments or never answer their phone (via voicemails, emails, texts, etc.), then they are not the right fit for you. Search for those whom others respect and speak highly of. In my own experience, I’ve found that if a person honors commitments and is respected by others, then they often model excellence within their own lives.
  1. Are they relationship builders? – Mentorship is a relationship. A mentor must convey the sense that they care about you and your future. If not, then why are they investing? Is it for self gain? I am not speaking of mere friendship, but rather about connection and a relationship where the individual is committed to helping you reach your potential. If there is no relationship, you will feel frustrated and fall short of expectations.
  1. Do they recognize mentorship as a long-term process? – Mentoring someone requires time and effort, as well as consistency. When evaluating potential mentors, ask questions to ensure their long-term commitment. 
  1. Do they raise good questions?  A good mentor will actively listen to you and assess where you stand. They must be creative in asking open-ended questions, further accelerating conversation. Remember, answers satisfy people’s understanding, but questions deepen them.Fotosearch_k1010396.jpg
  1. Are they willing to have those hard, uncomfortable conversations? – A good mentor will hold you accountable for your actions and failures. You need someone who is willing to expose the truth, rather than guard your delicate feelings. Expectations can be attained if you are held accountable.

The right mentor can accelerate your personal and professional development; the wrong mentor can destroy it. Nevertheless, if you are detailed, prudent and purposeful in your evaluation of potential mentors, you can ensure advancement, growth, and success in your life. Someone once said, “you pay for consultants, not mentors” and I believe that this statement is spot-on. If you “purchased” a mentor, then they wouldn’t be truly committed to you. Likewise, you can’t earn a mentor but rather, you earn a mentor’s attention.

Therefore, work hard in all due diligence to identify a mentor in you own life. I hope these 10 questions will serve as a guide on your endeavor and that you will recognize the importance a mentor has upon personal growth. I’ve heard some say, The teacher appears when the student is ready,” but I say the following is true; “The student appears when the teacher is ready.”