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To Effectively Coach/Mentor, Begin with Validated Individual Insights

As a DNA Behavior Accredited Consultant, I coach and mentor business leaders and individuals daily.

Every person I have coached has begun the engagement by saying in various ways that they want to find and fulfil their life’s purpose. Very often they are at a crossroads and need someone to signpost them in the right direction.

Universal signpost: Personal behavioral insight

Whether she’s a leader frustrated by her inability to drive greater success, or he’s an individual who has lost his way, every issue boils down to one clear truth – the lack of personal behavioral insight.

In the case of the leader:

  • How they lead;
  • How they communicate; and
  • How they manage people.

In the case of the individual:

  • How can I feel more appreciated?
  • Why can’t leadership see my unused talents?
  • How can I find my life’s purpose in work?

Whether as a leader or as an employee, each desire to do a good job that is life-giving and has meaning. But when their endeavours are not appreciated or ignored, people lose their compass. And often lose interest and initiative too.

Digging below the surface I find there is often dissatisfaction. An itch they can’t scratch. A longing that can’t be met. Unless this can be revealed, individuals can’t change direction and realize their life’s purpose. And, without this same revelation, leaders can’t create the space for team members to achieve it.

Fully engaged, focused on success

There are many reputable reports and studies showing there is a definite correlation between engaged employees and creative output, and how these drive business growth and innovation. So, when a client comes to me for coaching, the question of leadership always comes into the conversation.

Leaders have a huge responsibility in terms of creating settings within which people can work to their optimum. But when leaders do not know their people at a deep level, its unrealistic to expect them to establish spaces that enable individuals and teams to become engaged employees.

Gallup, Inc., defines engaged employees as those who are involved in and enthusiastic about their work and workplace. But the majority of employees are indifferent, sleepwalking through their workday without regard for their performance or their organizations performance. As a result, vital economic influencers such as growth and innovation are at risk.

My personal frustration: The many times an individual says, I just want someone to appreciate me and tell me if I’m doing a good job. Such exchanges between managers and employees don’t in themselves produce engagement, but its a good beginning.

Reconnecting the disconnects

When leaders know how to emotionally invest in their people, then real engagement begins. Whenever I work with leaders, I always ask them if they know how closely the success of the business aligns with the success their people are hoping for in their own lives.

Be mindful of the external stressors the people in your organization are dealing with. For instance, they may be dealing with and worrying about things like buying a home, schooling their children, saving for a holiday, paying off their college fees, investing to create wealth, the health of a loved one and more.

Successful leaders know their employees. They understand the power of engagement. They are comfortable having insightful conversations with them. Moreover, this then leads to healthier conversations when an individual’s work level falls off.

That kind of conversation isn’t about criticism and likely begins with, What’s happening in your world that’s causing this slump in your work? How can I help you get back on track? This is where true engagement comes into play and teams are built on trust and commitment to the business.

This is how leaders build and motivate their people. In the genuine exchanges.

Going below the surface

As consultants we need to advise our clients about the importance of getting below the surface of themselves and the people they lead. Some leaders may need to be taught how to engage in this way.

They may feel vulnerable doing it- but here’s the thing, if they want success in their business, getting the people stuff right is the only way to go. They may need to learn that that people stuff is not as soft and undefinable as they think. There are metrics, processes and tools that can help each of us know, engage and grow ourselves and the organizations we lead.

The first step for me in my coaching and mentoring approach as a consultant is for each client to complete their DNA Behavior Natural Discovery process. I can’t possibly advise, mentor and coach when I have no idea what people have hidden behind their personality mask. I wouldn’t even try.

Armed with this in-depth insight, I can then very quickly help them accelerate their performance, enabling them to achieve success on all levels regardless of where they sit in the organization.

Experience the kind of insights Im talking about by taking the DNA Behavior Natural Discovery yourself, at no cost or obligation.

To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior

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How To Build Trust In A Team: A Business DNA Product Upgrade

When we design feature improvements for Business DNA, we look at the hot topics that are raised in our training and coaching events. Last year, a hot topic was, “How to build trust in a team”. I am excited to announce that today, we released an update to the Trust scoring model for Natural Behavior that will answer that very question.

Trust Scoring Upgrade:

This upgrade was a culmination of 5 years of psychometric research and independent validation by our team of PhD’s and data scientists. The bar is now raised for DNA Behavior as having one of the only independently validated psychometric measurements of Trust in the behavioral profiling industry. In addition, this measurement provides our Business DNA Coaches, Consultants and Users with the following in-depth insights (in addition to the other 54 additional behavioral attributes we measure):

  • Trust and Skepticism
  • Delegation and Controlling
  • Openness and Suspicion
  • Approachable and Questioning
  • Relaxed and Exacting

If you want to know how to build trust in a team, you must first understand how your team builds trust. While asking questions and drilling in on details can build trust for some team members, that same activity may feel like a lack of trust to others. Trust building is not a one-time activity, but trust erosion can be. In order to build trust, you must consistently behave in ways that are seen to build trust with your team. Knowing how each member of your team responds naturally around trust can help you hit the right note with your team members and help you understand why something you do successfully with one person is failing with another.

How to measure trust in a team using Business DNA:

The Business DNA Natural Behavior assessment is an online questionnaire process that takes 10-minutes to complete. You and each one of your coworkers can spend just 10-minutes to complete their own assessment and compare your results. Each individual’s Trust score will be available in each individual’s 1-page factor Report, Workplace Operations Report and the Coaching Report.

How to build trust in a team:

Ready to build trust in your team? Our experience tells us that the first step to build trust in a team is to help each person understand each other’s unique style. The self-guided Team Report profiles an experiential walkthrough of the behavioral patterns for each of your team members and is intended to build trust by opening the lines of communication for each person’s unique style.

Are you Naturally Trusting or Skeptical?

Are you naturally more trusting or skeptical? Find out in just 10-minutes with our free trial. Experience Business DNA with this free trial and see how business leaders, coaches, and consultants discover the talents, communication styles, and personality profiles of employees and customers.

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HIRING – What You See May Not Be What You Get

Hiring is not an exact science, but there are ways to mitigate getting it wrong.

Twenty-seven percent of employers in the U.S. who reported a bad hire said that a single bad hire costs more than $50,000. (According to a CareerBuilder survey of 6,000 hiring managers and HR pros worldwide, 2013.) The internet is rife with tales of how expensive a bad hire can be.

But the bigger issue, and the one that has the potential to cause long-term damage to any organization, is the impact a bad hire has on productivity and morale. Matching candidates talents to the specific role, the team culture and conducting behavioral interviews to get below the surface, is more likely to get you to the right candidate for the role.

Sixty percent of hiring managers report that bad hires dont get along with co-workers, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.

Keep in mind that candidates will have a mixture of natural, learned and cognitive behaviors. These insights are measurable and, using a validated tool, can be revealed at the outset of the hiring process. Still, it isnt enough to fill a vacancy. The fit to the team, the organization, the culture and the up-line management, are significantly more important than the skill set a candidate brings to the table.

The lesson for CEOs: Dont hire yourself. Just because the interview went well and you connected does not translate to a fit for a role. Hire to the job. Hire to bring the talents you dont have to the organization.

And for you Recruiters? If you want to hire well, make sure you have a benchmark of the typical behavioral characteristics needed for high performance in specific roles. Not only do you need benchmarks for the role, you also need them for the team, department and decision makers. Without this information, the hire will be based on resumes, references and gut instinct.

Your reputation is riding on it. Candidates will be watching for vacancies at organizations who are known for their integrity, culture and treatment of their people. They will be more interested in the role than the salary. They will want your company name on their portfolio of work. They will want to boast they work for you.

Assessment Centers should take recruiting seriously too. Spend time with candidates. Its not enough to hire those that look good on paper and fit all the benchmarks; they also need the right character traits. If you are recruiting to a highly-pressurized role, you need to know their potential to manage others under pressure. Is there risk associated with the decision making in the role? How will the candidate respond under pressure? Are they going to become a rogue trader (for example)? Time spent in an assessment center provides insight into the extent a job applicant meets these qualities.

What to do?

  • Use a validated talent discovery system to get under the surface and discover the natural strengths and struggles.
  • Compare the outcomes to understand the candidates team fit and how they will interact with the leader and team members.
  • Have a list of powerful questions for conducting a behavioral interview based on the candidates natural strengths and struggles.

The most effective investment that a business can make into the hiring process, is to devote time and energy into benchmarking the talents and behaviors required for different roles. This makes for a smoother and more effective hiring process as you match candidates to roles.

To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior

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Own it! And Succeed

The more we understand our own personality and behavioral responses, the better able we are, both as individuals and teams, to work together effectively and avoid the blame game when things go wrong.

In his recent article, The Blame Game, Marc Corsini observes, When salespeople, professionals or executives are underperforming, they usually complain about others first.

Taking ownership of behavior

We all have our strengths and struggles. But those who understand and take responsibility for their behavior, will gain respect from others and have a healthy respect for themselves. Accepting personal responsibility is one of the most important factors in defining a person’s true character.

There is something liberating about being behaviorally aware. DNA Behavior’s Natural Behavior Discovery process offers significant insights into our “go to” behavior – our default reaction when under pressure, or when we make a mistake or lose focus among life events.

Sometimes, when we’re struggling or lose confidence, rather than asking for help, we blame others for our lack of performance or our mistakes. On occasion, we are the ones being blamed and fail to stand up to the accuser. But the reality is that such a response is immature. We need to take responsibility for our own behaviors and responses. Becoming behaviorally smart is as simple as completing a highly-validated psychometric questionnaire and receiving detailed personality insight, together with detailed information on how to build on our strengths and manage our struggles.

Further, becoming behaviorally smart through completing the DNA Behavior Natural Discovery process will also reveal other areas where it is important to take responsibility for our behavior. For example:

  1. How we lead others.
  2. How we communicate and wish to be communicated with.
  3. The environment within which we are more likely to flourish.
  4. How we perform on a consistent basis
  5. Our reaction to the financial markets when they fluctuate.
  6. How we approach decision making.
  7. How willing we are to take risk or not.
  8. Our biases (we all have them, but the key is knowing what they are and how to manage them).

In leadership, it’s likely that people will work more effectively if leaders understand them. Sounds simple! But without insight into personality, communication, strengths, and struggles, leaders can’t be successful.

When a leader is self-aware and has gained insights into how to manage others through understanding and managing behavior – success is the outcome.

To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior

 

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Fill Big Data’s Big Gap

The explosion of available information from social media, together with significant techniques for capturing this data, now provides financial advisors with a gold mine of information to help them identify and connect with clients.

Big Data gathering is only a starting point in terms of capturing user behavior. It delivers a glimpse of the client but leaves a significant gap and won’t offer enough insight to be able to advise or offer solutions to clients based upon their life goals.

DNA Behavior International fills the gap. With the use of behavioral psychological insights, revealed through a validated questionnaire, their powerful DNA behavioral intelligence, partnered with their Big Data Optimization program enriches firms employee and client data.

IBM in their Big Data and Analytics Hub ask these questions: Are you (financial advisor) generating targeted personalized offers for your clients? Do you know your customers and provide them with timely, relevant and optimized offers based on data-driven insights? By leveraging information about your clients’ behaviors, needs, and preferences, you can encourage high response rates from clients and enhanced relationships with them.

Client Insight for Wealth Management

When financial advisors use Big Data to enhance their service offering – what are they extracting from the data? How are they interpreting it? What is it saying about potential clients? Will clients be concerned that they are being advised based on their social media accounts alone?

Financial advisors who mine social media to serve client’s life events should know this does not reveal personality or bias. It doesn’t uncover decision making styles. It won’t predict a reaction to market mood. It won’t reveal influencing life events.

Advisors who are behaviorally smart understand there is a gap in Big Data mining. They know the importance of guiding clients with wisdom to self-discover who they are and their priorities to achieve financial wholeness. Financial DNA discovery delivers this self-discovery process. This strong, validated, structured approach reveals all dimensions of a client’s financial personality.
A partnership between behavioral analytics that reveal personality and big data offers financial advisors a significant key to identifying clients and delivering accurate advice.

As quickly as Big Data mining was the key to understanding customers now the added requirement is for financial advisors to be able to use cognitive and analytics to understand their clients.

 

Hugh Massie

 

Gauthier Vincent head of Deloitte’s US Wealth management consulting business is quoted in the Financial Times: Tools that help manage interactions with clients will soon be able to analyze data such as a client’s social media activity to work out their investment goals and advisers are thinking. There’s a lot of info out there I would love to have to create rich profiles of prospects so I can increase the odds of success when I [contact] them.

Well said – but Big Data will only ever become a significant tool for financial advisors when it shares its platform with a financial personality discovery process such as Financial DNA.

To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior.

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When ‘Brilliant’ Is Not Enough

The New York Times covers several aspects of the Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s demise. It references the culture in the organization, speed of growth, shareholder concerns, and the aggressiveness of the leader.

In specific, it highlights Kalanick’s pattern of risk taking and references his lack of integrity. For example, the many years where Uber engaged in a worldwide program to deceive authorities in markets where its low-cost ride-hailing service was resisted by law enforcement or, in some instances, had been banned.

In other reads, Kalanick’s unhinged confidence and competitiveness are hailed as examples of what makes him such a brilliant entrepreneur. Yet he is prone to trash-talking and tantrums, further revealing that his position as a CEO/Manager is highly suspect.

These observations highlight the fact that he is not self-aware and will continue to simply get in the way of his own success. Had he been behaviorally smart, he would have known that while entrepreneurs clearly need the talent to start a business, they also need much more to grow into successful CEO/Managers.

Kalanick says this about himself, “I must fundamentally change as a leader and grow up.”

But when an entrepreneur has a pattern of risk-taking and lack of integrity then continues to present himself as bullet-proof, the behavior results in poor management. This is where genius can become insanity and entrepreneurship crosses over into illicit behavior.

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No single personality type makes up an entrepreneur – but there are wise steps that can be taken to manage the talents required to be a successful one. For example:

  • Managing creativity
  • Managing risk-taking
  • Developing innovation
  • Understanding personal EQ
  • Working with and through people

Highly innovative and creative individuals who see themselves as entrepreneurs (defined by Dictionary.com as those who identify a need—independent of product, service, industry or market) should take seriously the need to understand their personality before venturing into starting a business.

The DNA Behavior Natural Discovery Process is a highly-validated discovery platform that predicts behavioral responses through identifying personality traits, attitudes about money, risk tolerances, and behavioral biases. Independent research shows DNA Behavior’s behavioral intelligence solutions lead to:

  • Closing the 60% engagement black hole caused by the relationship gaps in employee and client interactions
  • Increasing the suitability of client solutions offered to 99.75%
  • Improved employee productivity by up to 40% and increased revenue by over 23% a year
  • Identifying the 5% of employees who are potentially rogue, costing 5% of revenue in losses per year

As Travis Kalanick mourns his ignominious fall from grace, one thing is for sure – when he starts a new venture (and he will) his first step should be to understand how to manage his behaviors. And maybe then he can begin to understand why he thought the number one commandment he set for Uber employees was – Always Be Hustlin. Not the smartest of values to build a business upon, but a very clear indicator of the person who birthed the phrase.

To learn more, please speak with one of our DNA Behavior Specialists (LiveChat), email inquiries@dnabehavior.com, or visit DNA Behavior.