My journey into Emergenetics was fueled by a desire to see the Clark/Sullivan leadership team become a model for collaborative construction. Shaping multiple personality disorders into strong teams is a universal challenge facing all businesses. Whether you are constructing buildings, selling cars, or selling grooming supplies for llamas, you need teams with empathy who work well together and provide excellent customer service. The challenge that always comes to my mind is relating to teammates (both internal and external) who have an endless variety of personalities. You find some are a joy to collaborate with, but sadly the range runs to that other extreme – the personality that belongs to a former teammate you are confident took a relative to their high school prom. In the spirit of developing better rapport, our leadership team at Clark/Sullivan spent an entertaining day with Chris Cox of Amplitude Training learning about Emergenetics. While the name brings to mind evil scientists conducting unethical genetic experimentation, it is actually a tool that can help people better understand not only themselves but others they interact with.
Prior to our training, we completed an online survey about our thinking preferences. The responses were scored and compared with the extensive data base used by the Company behind Emergenetics. Chris handed out our results in graphs that resemble the pies from a Trivial Pursuit game with various colors of pie pieces. Each piece represents one of the four identified preferred ways of thinking (Analytical, Structural, Conceptual and Social). The size of each pie piece is dependent upon your relative preference for each style of thinking. The survey also provides your range of preference for the three ways of behaving (Expressiveness, Assertiveness and Flexibility). While space is too limited to explain the entire process in one post, I want to share my key takeaways from our day:
Seek To Understand
Habit #5 from Steven Covey kept coming into my mind during our session, “Seek first to understand and then to be understood.” The information provided by the Emergenetics survey gave me valuable insights into the personalities and behaviors of my teammates. There is not a best personality profile (even though I am a big fan of mine). Each profile comes with strengths and weaknesses. Having the power to acknowledge our weaknesses and build upon our strengths is very potent self-improvement tool.
If we strive to understand those that play a key part of our lives, in particular customers, teammates and families, it will help us live our lives by what is known as the Platinum Rule. This is the alternate to the Golden Rule: instead of treating others how you want to be treated, you treat others the way they want to be treated. At Clark/Sullivan we are committed to our personal growth so that we can better serve our customers, teammates and our community. Emergenetics is a wonderful tool to help us become a more collaborative construction team. It’s definitely not a trivial pursuit.