My Hardwiring – A Case Study – Part 2

As an ENFJ I have some company within the U.S. population; we make up a little more than 8% of the country and do share some common general traits. But my personality preferences are only part of what makes up my individual “hardwiring.”

   

Which Hemisphere Dominates?

We use both “sides” of our brain all the time and constantly, however the nural connections are usually more well developed on one side. That side becomes our “dominant” hemisphere and seems to get used for about 60% of our mental work. Our dominant “side” has a profound effect on the way we prefer to learn. Left-brain people seem to learn best through understanding the details, facts, and logic of an issue or situation. In school they usually prefer objective, fact-based tests. They tend to be interested in “how” something should be done. Right-brain people seem to learn best through understanding the “big picture” first and look for patterns and relationships among the facts and details. Usually their visual sense is fairly well-developed and use color, music, and drawings to anchor what they learn. Not surprisingly, Sensors are more likely to be left-brain dominant and iNtuitives like me are more likely to be right-brain dominant.

Think about yourself; perhaps you know which “side” tends to be your dominant hemisphere. Maybe you’ve never thought about it before. Then ask yourself how you can better use this part of your hardwiring to be better at the things that are really important to you. The next step in the journey.

Next time: Visual, Kinesthetic, Auditory – Dealing with Incoming Information

My Hardwiring – A Case Study – Part 1

The easiest way I can think of to illustrate the way our hardwiring influences and steers us in certain directions is to use my own hardwiring as an example. At the risk of telling you more about me than you might care to know, here goes:

Personality Preferences – I’m an Extravert – outgoing, highly verbal, and get energized by being around other people. I’m more interested in action than I am sitting and thinking deeply about events or issues. I’m interested in the “big picture” – the “why” of things a lot more than I am interested in the “how” or details of things. I pay attention to the mission, need to craft or see the vision of what we are trying to accomplish, and use my gut-feel or intuition to help me make decisions. When making those decisions I consider the impact on others, my internal value system as well as analyzing the logic and bottom-line effects. What’s best for people is going to get my nod most of the time. I prefer to plan my work and work my plan most of the time when it comes to my professional life; schedules and deadlines are helpful, and having an organized, neat environment feels comfortable. That’s not quite so important in my personal life and that seems to be increasing as I get older. From a Myers-Briggs standpoint, that makes me an Extravert, iNtuitive, Feeler, Judger (ENFJ) with some well-developed Perceiver tendencies.

For more information on the Myers-Briggs, see the website at Midwest Consulting Group.

What about your personality preferences? Care to share?

Next Time – My Hardwiring – A Case Study – Part 2

To order The 8 Essential Skills for Supervisors & Managers” visit Amazon.com.

What’s Your Hardwiring?

We all have our individual “hardwiring” – those aspects of who we are that are the product of our genetic makeup and early nurturing. In some ways we are driven to behave, react, communicate, and think as we do. Often subconsciously, and sometimes in spite of our conscious desire otherwise. Over the years some particularly valuable and practical tools have helped us better understand  ourselves. As a result, we come to understand other people better.

A combination of factors make up our hardwiring:

  • Personality  – our preferences – those in-born ways of looking at the world, what energizes us, how we make decision, and what we pay attention to. We use the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) to help understand Personality.
  • Hemisphere – while we use both right and left hemispheres of our brain all the time, but most of us utilize one hemisphere more than the other. Whether we are Left Brain or Right Brain dominant has a major affect on how we learn new information and skills.
  • Information Processing – our three major senses (Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic) provide us with most of the information we use in life. Information we acquire through our dominent sense seems clearer and is more easily absorbed.
  • Talents & Strengths – our innate individual “gifts” – those aspects of who we are when we’re at our best. We use the Clifton StrengthFinder assessment to help people understand their talents and those of others.

Understanding yourself is an essential part of Skill 1 – Managing Yourself. What’s your hardwiring like?

Next time – My Hardwiring – a case study – Part 1

Why Skill 1 is “Managing Yourself”

Some would claim that Communication is the most important skill. Others would argue that being good at Solving Problems and Making Decisions is the most important. Still others will assert that Building Successful Relationships is more important than anything else. I believe Managing Yourself is Skill 1 – the most important and critical initial skill. And, of course, I’m about to tell you why.

The ability to effectively manage your own life is, to me, the foundational skill – all the other skills flow from this ability. Learning, developing, and practicing good self-management puts you in the position of being able to acquire the rest of the 8 Essential Skills And the opposite is also true; the supervisor or manager who is poor at managing themself is going to have a difficult time acquiring the rest of the skillset. The result is a rather ineffective, probably unsuccessful manager.

We’re not talking just about managing yourself at work. What I really mean is learning how to handle the pace and density of our modern life. Life is a combination of professional and personal tasks, projects, relationships, plans, information, and challenges. The sheer volume of information, ideas, communications, commitments, projects, and tasks tends to grow all the time. The mix changes constantly, as do priorities. And as our careers advance and our personal life progresses, the more complex the mix seems to become. Managing Yourself involves learning a set of skills, but more importantly, it involves knowing who you are, what you stand for, and what drives you as a person.

Managing Yourself starts with knowing yourself.

Next Time: What’s Your Hardwiring?

Bank Orders Multiple Copies

A large regional bank with a major presence in SW Michigan ordered quite a few copies of The 8 Essential Skills – seems they want to help their already great management team kick it up a notch or two. Quality people recognize quality ideas! Yea!

A Tweet from David Allen

The 8 Essential Skills got a nice bump from longtime friend, colleague, and client David Allen. His Tweet yesterday generated some more buzz and a batch of orders on Amazon.com. With 1.4 million people following David on Twitter, it bodes well for future sales. His Tweet follows:

Long-time friend Paul Knudstrup has a book out on mgmt & supervisory best practices. Good stuff. http://amzn.to/dqZzzB

David also provided a great testimonial when I sent him an advance copy. He said:

“The simple definition of management as the allocation of limited resources belies the incredible number of factors that contribute to doing it well. In this book Paul has done an extraordinary job of identifying those factors and providing a practical toolkit for working with them effectively. This is a terrific manual for professionals new to a supervisory role and a great refresher for those of us who’ve learned that managing others successfully is a lifelong challenge. Bravo!”

 Thank you David!

If you are not yet acquainted with David’s teachings and his Getting Things Done (GTD) approach to self-management, you owe it to yourself to  find out; we are big fans of his here at Midwest Consulting Group and MCG Press. I make frequent reference to his ideas in Skill 1 – Managing Yourself section of The 8 Essential Skills.

What do you think?

Quantity Discounts on The 8 Essential Skills

Senior managers in several organizations have expressed interest in purchasing multiple copies of The 8 Essential Skills for Supervisors & Managers so we’ve developed a multiple discount program. It’s pretty simple and straightforward:

Order at least 100 copies of The 8 Essential Skills directly from us at MCG Press and receive a discount.

  • 100-199 copies 5% discount @ $17.05 each
  • 200-299 copies 7.5% discount @ $16.60 each
  • 300-399 copies 10% discount @ $16.15 each
  • 400-499 copies 12% discount @ $15.80 each

We’ll have your order printed, bound, and on its way to you in just a few days, and shipping is free.

Placing your order is easy – just E-mail me at PaulK@MidwGroup.com. Let us know you saw this blog post and receive a bonus gift!

What a great way to help your entire management team improve and grow together!