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Genuine Identity and Purpose: The Money Will Flow

– First Published on Nasdaq –

How does knowing your identity impact how you relate to other people? What part does it play in boosting confidence? Throw the emotional and gravitational pull of money into the mix, and where does knowing or not knowing your identity fit?

There is no doubt that understanding your identity reflects who you are at the core. It informs the direction of your life. It highlights the importance of your communication style, whether professional or personal.

Here, we speak of identity as your inherent or innate passion and purpose and the associated behaviors, good or bad.

People, then numbers

It may go without saying that we are all different and being able to manage differences enriches relationships. That can be particularly impactful in the financial services industry, where the emotional pull of money is front and center.

In fact, understanding the identity of clients is foundational to the advisory process. The same is true of advisors knowing their own identity. On a day-to-day basis, advisors need to be able to adapt their own communication to those of others. For example, they need to know when to be direct, inclusive, soft, a listener, or a counselor.

When knowing identity focuses on the advisor-client relationship, walls come down, creating a much healthier framework for delivering advice. Advice that is likely to be more accurate and lasting. Clients know when an advisor genuinely knows them and cares about their life goals, plans, and wealth creation. They know when advice is more about people than numbers.

Money decisions are different

I’m passionate about pioneering the understanding of money behavior. We of course all have innate behaviors and understanding those behaviors – especially as pertains to decision making – is particularly challenging but also particularly revealing when it comes to money.

Money impacts every aspect of our lives. Money can power our lives positively or negatively, regardless of the amount of money we have.

But what I’ve confirmed over the past few years is that when individuals know their identity, they can put money to work for them positively. As a result, they tend to make fewer decisions – about money and finances but also about other things – that impact them negatively.

When you know your identity, you know your talents, and you know your inherent behaviors, leading to wealth creation via applying your skills and building meaningful, supportive relationships. Whether you are an individual investor or leading a team or organization, it’s essential to understand the energy of money and people’s relationship to it.

Identity as info & armor

We live in a world that is highly dynamic and interconnected. Whether the speed at which we all work, the many ways technology has shaped what we do, or the deluge of opportunities coming at us, we need to be able to flex. To adapt at a moment’s notice.

So, if identity is what shapes and protects us, we understand who we are and our inherent reactions, and we can flex and adapt securely. We are less likely to make bad decisions. Instead, we see opportunities for what they are and choose whether to grab them or walk away.

A cautionary note for advisors and industry leaders is that the environment changes regularly inside a business and in people’s lives. Unless identity is known, you have no way of anticipating how clients will respond to life challenges. In reality, you are advising and leading the (figuratively) blind.

As an advisor, knowing your own identity is transformative. It increases and clarifies the quality of the questions you ask your clients, the observations you make, and the guidance you provide them – including how and when you communicate with them. You know the importance of getting to foundational stuff that means the advice you give or leadership style you adopt is suitable for that individual in that scenario at that time.

The clarity of identity

Whatever your life circumstances are, discovering a robust identity and then living it is the pathway to accelerating your advancement. There are no magic bullets here. There is work and focus involved.

Once you get the clarity of your identity, your confidence will dramatically increase. Confidence is the Number One influencer of performance. The journey will be highly positive, and through it, you will be a better person, at work and at play. And, as an advisor, you will have a better business.

It’s true for both advisors and clients: Genuinely live your identity and your purpose, and the money will follow.

See Hugh’s other writings for Nasdaq here.

Accelerate Your Leadership

Accelerate Your Leadership

“Leadership is not domination, but the art of persuading people to work toward a common goal.” – Daniel Goleman

What is your definition of leadership? What are some of the attributes of great leaders you have experienced? Who are some great leaders that are role models for you?

When it comes to leadership, everyone seems to have a different opinion on whether leadership talents are natural or learned and which talents are more important than others. Opinions also differ around how to develop leadership abilities, what makes a good leader and the best way to lead people. This is not surprising given the complexity of people and relationships, and the fact that each person has a unique perspective on leadership based on who they are.

Many leaders have recently experienced remote working, maybe for the first time. Now is a good time to consider what has gone well and what has been a behavioral challenge.

If you are unfamiliar with your behavior and responses you could well be inadvertently causing problems with your teams. Using the insight of the Business DNA Natural Behavior Discovery, you will gain a deep understanding of your natural hard-wired behavior which is at the core of your leadership talents. This insight is the starting point for informing how people are likely to relate to your leadership style and what you need to understand about yourself to manage those relationships.

The data enables you to personalize your leadership to the individual, remembering that one size of leadership approach does not fit all.

Using our 200+ actionable insights into each person’s behavior, strengths, struggles, communications keys and more, puts you in the driving seat to be able to interact with others on terms that improve their relationship with you and the business, and this inevitably leads to increase in productivity and success.

People who feel ‘seen’ and valued in the workplace – are more effective. This is critical to your leadership approach.

Discovering the Impact of Your Leadership

We have a unique “inside-out” approach to the development of leaders. When you are more aware of your natural behavioral talents for leadership you will be able to understand if you are a result or relationships-based leader. Generally, most people are one or the other. The goal is to develop the appropriate balance between managing results and relationships.

One of the interesting responses we have noticed in working with industry leaders is the importance from their people that leaders have integrity and can be trusted.

In the work we do with leaders and their organizations we firstly use the Business DNA Natural Behavior Discovery tools to understand leadership behaviors. We then use our sophisticated Business DNA Leadership 360-degree discovery to establish how your leadership style is actually impacting the people working with you. This analysis will reflect your “learned leadership behaviors”. It reveals:

• What kind of working environment you are creating?
• Is there a productive energy?
• Are you communicating effectively to build great relationships with your teams?

Developing your leadership style is a continual process. Everyone has some blind-spots, and even biases, but being aware of them is critical. Awareness of your limitations or pressure points gives you the opportunity to manage them. Remembering that being able to manage differences in behavior effectively is what produces an organization focused on goals and success.

Great leaders who are behaviorally insightful into their own and others personality and tend to have an equally discerning understanding of their emotional intelligence. They navigate the behavioral differences they face. They understand theirs and others pressure points. They know getting these right builds trust that leads to successful leadership.

So, understanding your behavioural style is the foundation of your leadership abilities. Of course, we need to recognize that there are many other aspects of leadership to learn as well, execution delegation, communication, time-management, to name but a few. But this basic understanding will set the platform for developing the rest of these areas.

Behavioral Insight Influences the Bottom Line

Quality leadership affects the bottom-line. Effective leaders are thirteen times more likely to outperform their industry competitors. The difference in the impact of a top-performing leader and an average performing leader is 50%. In the area of key metrics like financial performance, organizations with the highest quality leaders were 13 times more likely to outperform their industry competitors.

Organizations with higher quality leadership higher employee retention and engagement rates (up to three times that of their competitors). Source

Having behavioral insight in real-time on any device makes leadership and interaction with people significantly more effective. Simply being able to compare two (or more profiles) in advance of a meeting puts leadership in a strong position to manage conversations effectively.

Why not try it free or talk to one of our consultants – or both.

Pioneer

How Not to be Named and Shamed in the #metoo Movement

This article first appeared on HR Management.

As leaders, we have a responsibility to understand the impact our behaviour has on the people we have the responsibility (and the privilege) of leading.

No longer is it acceptable to bully, manipulate, harass, individuals just to achieve our goals. No longer is it acceptable to take risks that compromise the business and alarm and unsettle staff. No more can position, authority or power be used to compromise a colleague.

Leaders need to have significant insight into their leadership style, their communication approach, their bias, and yes, we all have biases. Further, successful organizations invest in knowing its leaders and individual employees are attuned to these things.

Aggressive and controlling management styles are no longer acceptable. The greatest and most effective leaders know how to guide, mentor, and invest in their people, knowing that this sets individuals and teams up for success.

Leadership is complex; it takes character and self-awareness. It requires a level of vulnerability and re-thinking if leaders are to be effective. Allowing bottom-line results, aggressive deadlines and demanding stakeholders to style your approach to leadership is a recipe for disaster.

The leader who is behaviourally smart is the winner. When you understand the importance of getting below the surface of yourself and the people you lead and understand how best to invest into them, businesses flourish.

Inherent behaviour is fixed: Its who a person is; its the foundation. Its the raw material that informs how the world is viewed. It cant be learned. It drives talents and personality. It is fundamental hardwiring.

Personality is driven by behaviour: Its the mask worn; its a persons outward character. Its what we let others see on the surface. Personality is formed and revealed from circumstances, social pressure, education, social environment and family influences. Its the sum of the physical, mental, emotional and social characteristics of an individual and can change as circumstances dictate.

Having a revelation about the difference between inherent behaviour and personality not only educates, but, more importantly, it paves the way for leaders in business to understand what their role is in revealing behaviours which will remain constant over time. It gives insight and understanding into knowing when they are viewing the mask. Behaviour is the real person. Personality is the outward appearance an individual chooses to reveal.

Uncover this knowledge about yourself and you will quickly understand the importance of knowing it about the teams you lead.

The responsibility for effective team functioning and dynamics lies with you, the leader, and as such, demands a level of self-awareness that ensures your legacy will not be crossing boundaries and becoming named and shamed in the #metoo movement.

Using a highly-validated discovery process can deliver insight into both inherent and learned behaviour all of which is measurable.

It can reveal communication styles. This above all creates powerful leadership and team development. With this kind of insight, messages are appropriate and clear. Individuals understand what they are being asked to do and why. Great communication insight is especially crucial in times of pressure, when blunt exchanges can surface.

Examples of key communication insights that are powerful both for leadership and the team are shown in the quadrant graphic. There is powerful value in leadership learning how to connect with each style and stay connected and then use this knowledge and insight to build optimally functioning teams.

Learn what lurks beneath, and use it to your advantage.

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