Looking Back, Looking Ahead Measuring and Managing Behavioral Differences Across Any Challenge

As COVID becomes more lesson learned and less daily challenge, we’re moving on stronger to help our clients make better high-stakes decisions using behavioral and money insights. If nothing else, the pressure caused by COVID underscores the critical importance of understanding and managing individual differences to enable the customization of experiences in every interaction and in decision-making.

For instance, if you can quantify and understand how employees and clients engage differently based on their innate programming, you can better manage a pivot, as when we all had to shift to remote working. Likewise, if you were lucky enough to already have individual behavior and money insights for decision-making in hand pre-pandemic, you could have been ahead of the pack, enabling more humanity to be baked into online interactions when in-person interactions were no longer an option.

In that way, the pandemic exemplifies our work as a behavior and money insights company providing applications (in both the operational and technical senses) well beyond financial planning. I note beyond the financial services industry because that’s where we started and are perhaps best known.

Expanding our behavioral chip deployments – the DNA API



Still, the power of measuring and managing behavioral differences, especially when such is easily configured for existing platforms and systems via an API or otherwise, need not stop at functional or industry borders. Customization via quantifiable, replicable, and validated behavioral insights are already powering human resource functions, entrepreneurship, insurance, planned giving, cybersecurity, marketing, interior design, and more.

As we see further decentralization and automation in the push to the digitalization of services, the power of behavior and money insights will only become more critical in the quest to enable the hyper-personalization of experiences. 2022 will see us deploying the DNA Behavior API as the “behavioral chip” within a number of other financial services corporations in the USA and globally, among others. Although, our goal will be to ensure the platforms that we deploy in do empower improved human interactions and not serve as a substitute for them.

Behavioral diversity – DEI re-focusing


Further, in 2022 we will expand the work we have done in helping enterprises and governmental organizations re-configure and grow their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs to include core segments for managing behavioral differences. While many DEI programs are well-intentioned and on the face of it “tick the box,” they have so far done little to improve workplace culture and how stakeholders (boards, executives, teams, clients, suppliers, and communities) engage with each other from a communication and talent management perspective.

Behavioral variability and digital benchmarking

In 2022, DNA Behavior will be doing more to help you make the right decisions about people, transactions, and events.

We will be partnering to launch an exciting bit of AI which solves the problem of the high variability in subjective judgment call decisions in which a similar outcome would be expected. Extensive research has shown there is a high level of “noise” in decision-making, or what we call behavioral variability, caused by unchecked intuition. Importantly, the organizational cost of this behavioral variability which is prevalent somewhere in most businesses can be measured. For instance, in determining client risk profiles and asset allocation, sales forecasting, valuations, hiring, budgeting, cost estimations, quoting fees for services, quality control, and the like.

The AI is known as “GENE” which is a digital twin that will help decision-makers use objective insights or benchmarks in the making of judgment decisions.

Here’s what that looks like: 10 different financial advisors, faced with the same inputs about the same client, could make 10 different assessments of risk and asset allocation. Further, they can make different assessments about whether the client is an ideal fit and how they should be interacted with. But aren’t there always those, say, 5 to10 best performers, who analyze the data and get their decisions right –or at least closer to right –than anyone else? More of the time? Well, this digital benchmarking builds a digital twin so those best-case assessments can be emulated, or at least referenced, every time a decision is made.

These digital clones don’t replace advisors or professionals in other areas; rather, they serve as a check/balance, helping them hone their expertise–another tool enabling you’re A-Team to harness behavioral diversity and behavioral variability to nail great decisions and outcomes at an even higher rate.

In addition, we are building a GENE FAQ to help you more quickly get answers at your fingertips to specific questions that are not immediately obvious from reading a report.

Upgrades + a book

The New Year also brings upgrades of our own, as we recognize the need for an expanded range of insights (500+!) to be available at your fingertips with ready-to-go analysis, greater flexibility, and the dashboard functionality increasingly used – especially by larger organizations–while continuing to meet the technical complexities of our clients and partners who also will realize even greater cyber security benefits.

In 2022 comes another re-launch, this time of Financial DNA: Discovering Your Unique Financial Personality for a Quality Life, Hugh Massie’s book originally published by Wiley in 2006. Updates to the book reflect advances and refinements of DNA Behavior systems.

Boys Without Fathers charity

I would posit that all of my work is a passion project, but a philanthropic passion project becomes real in 2022 with the launch of Boys Without Fathers, a charity that will empower boys (and their families) from homes in which a father was not present from a very young age via literacy, character development, mentoring to make decisions and entrepreneurship.

I discovered in hosting Identity Conversations with our clients this year that there was a high prevalence of us (including me) growing up in a home where the father was not there from a very early age for whatever reason. The loss and trauma have been shown through research to cause literacy and character development issues, along with the difficulty of finding their identity and place in the world. The issues are similar regardless of race, culture, or opportunity. So, starting the Boys Without Fathers fulfills another dream for me of empowering youth globally to live a life of meaning which I have been fortunate to do.

The DNA systems will be deployed as we partner with remarkable people like Dr. Greg Spencer and incredible organizations like his footsteps 2 brilliance and Terry Hawkins and Jeff Morris from DreamSmart Academy, and others. Robust collaborations will drive mentoring and training and coaching programs. To learn more, contact us at inquiries@dnabehavior.com and let me know if you want to collaborate or help the Boys Without Fathers charity in some way when it is up and running around March 2022.

Identity conversations

To help you go to the next stage in telling the world about the great work you are doing or to become liberated in discovering your meaning and how you aspire the world to see you, let’s hook you up with an Identity Conversation. In a one-hour conversation, the value of everything you have done in your life that has got you today will be unpacked and a platform for accelerating dramatic growth will be set.

Leading with behavior & money insights roundtable discussions

In whatever way you interact with us (round table, identity interview, or some new, inventive collab?) we’ll be leveraging the measurement and management of human differences toward better decisions, better outcomes. After all, 20 years of research and almost half as many years in the practical application of behavior and money insights demonstrate solid, growing demand for leaders who know and understand the impact of behavior and money, particularly the behavior around money decisions.

We’re focused on behavior variability: Again, why do different individuals make different decisions about the same things? From leaders making sales forecasts to financial advisors assessing risk in portfolio allocation to teams making key hires and budgeting costs, families making decisions, and buying businesses. Imagine the impacts!

If you want to be included in one of our round tables, please email us at: inquiries@dnabehavior.com

Intuition + data

I’ll leave you with this stark stat: Intuition has proven to be 28 percent accurate. Less than a third. Now, I’m not asking you to throw your valuable and well-earned “gut” feeling out. But I am advocating the delay of the use of that alone with time for cognitive reflection. Bring an objective assessment to your decisions with better data analysis, more structured decision-making using the Gene Decision Method, and consultation with the Gene AI Digital Twin. To your leadership. To your investments. To your new-year forecasting and planning…

While you ponder that, please accept my wishes for a terrific holiday season and a bright new year in which we might partner toward making your best high-stakes decisions ever.

Hugh Massie

Hugh Massie - Chairman and CEO of DNA Behavior International

As an Identity Trailblazer and Behavioral Finance Insights Pioneer, Hugh Massie empowers advisers, business leaders, families and individuals to unlock their identity for accelerating dramatic change and discover how unknown behaviors which intensify through un-managed differences, money attitudes, pressure and emotions - derail performance.

Hugh helps advisers, leaders, families, and individuals adopt an “understanding people before numbers” approach to making Behaviorally SMART decisions based on their identity, thus customizing experiences for accelerating human performance.

Hugh’s real-world practical applications of behavioral insights and the mastery of the energy of money, blended with strong financial skills, gives him the unique capability to design a wide variety of universally applicable human performance apps. The tech Hugh has developed with his team benefits 1.5 million+ people annually in 125 countries & 11 languages.)