Podcast Transcript

Greg:

86% of companies reported an ROI on their coaching engagements. Imagine that.

(ICF Global Coaching Study, 2020)

 

Greg:

Welcome to the Imagine That podcast. We have Dr. Ben Sorenson with us. Actually, he, he is a person that has really helped me. I think everyone listening is going to find Ben to be very helpful. We’re going to talk about, should you have a coach? What does coaching matter? Can you be coached up? You know, do you need a coach as you become more and more successful in life and why? And then, this may be news to you — in the second — I want to talk about those quadrants. I found them to be really, really informative. So I’d love to talk about like how we all can do a better job of connecting with each other and then just in continual improvement, the third thing would be feedback.

 

So anyhow, three things we’re ready to talk about today. Coaching, connecting, and feedback. And to do that, we have Ben, Dr. Ben Sorensen with us. So here’s who Ben is. He’s an executive coach, right? So he does a lot of executive coaching. He can— Here are some of the clients he worked with. T. Rowe Price, great investment firm. That’s how I met Ben. And then PepsiCo, Disney, DirectTV, MGM, Comcast, Greg Weimer, weird list. Like what the heck? Here’s, here’s his background. Ben, could you just not get enough schooling? He goes to Georgetown gets his law degree. Is that true?

 

Ben:

Yes.

 

Greg:

Master’s of Science of Strategic Intelligence from National Intelligence University. I’m going to say that again. Yep. Brian’s in the room with me. He’s looking at me, like what? Master of Science of Strategic Intelligence from the National Intelligence University. All right. That’s just really cool. Doctor of Ministry from Ambridge University, Master’s of Arts and Leadership from Duquesne. You’re a Lieutenant Commander, specializing intelligence in the Navy. Spent five years in the Pentagon. In his spare time, he’s the city commissioner of Fort Lauderdale. What the heck? What made you do all that?

 

Ben:

Short attention span, can’t stay focused on one thing. I don’t, I don’t know. I’m still trying to figure it out.

 

Greg:

I was like, I thought I knew you, but I’m reading your bio and then I’m like, what are you doing? Having dinner with me? I mean, my goodness.

 

Ben:

And you know, I’m learning from you all the time too, man. So it’s a, it’s a give and take.

 

Greg:

So what made you start doing the coaching thing? Like tell us about like, why coaching is important. What do you, what made you start?

 

Ben:

So thanks Greg. I mean, I’ve just always been interested in leaders and, and the basic idea of, Hey, are leaders born or are they made, is it some combination? And growing up, my parents are folks who were real involved in the community. And so I found myself around different community leaders and business leaders. And I’d see those folks when I was young and I’d say, Hey, I want to be like those folks. I want to be able to influence and help people. And so, as I was doing that and kind of grew up, I started taking courses around, how can we be better leaders? How can we not start reading a lot about being better leaders and developing and so forth. And so it just, it led to kind of this amazing kind of fortuitous event where a buddy that I grew up with and the father of a friend I grew up with, came to me and said, Hey, we’re doing executive coaching leadership training. We need help. We know you’re in law school. I was in my second year of law school at the time. And they said, would you want to help us? And I said, I’d love to, but I got to finish law school. And they said, Hey, we’ll, we’ll work around your schedule, make it work. And that was 16 years ago, Greg. And I’ve been doing it ever since.

 

Greg:

So, so, so to the question, are they born, or can you create a leader? Like what, like what’s the answer to that?

 

Ben:

Yeah, to me it’s, it’s, it’s created, I think we’re born with certain kind of traits and abilities, but the real skill and role of leaders, I think, is really developing as they grow identifying strengths. You know, Mark Twain says or said that the two most important days in our life are first, the day we’re born. And second, the day we figure out why. And so I think leaders are folks who really are able to tap into why are they, why are they here and what can they do with their gifts?

 

Greg:

So what are some of the traits though, of a typical leader? Like, like if someone’s listening and say I don’t know, I don’t, I don’t feel like I’m a leader. So what are some of the traits that you find that leaders have?

 

Ben:

So I’ll tell you, I’ll, I’ll lead with what I think is the most important. And this is a result of coaching one-on-one with folks around the world and working with organizations around the world. If you ask me, what’s the single most important quality to determine if someone’s going to be an effective leader and be able to lead people and, and grow. The single most effective and important quality is what I call having a growth mindset, a growth mindset — meaning, meaning: are you eager and willing to learn and adapt? Are you hungry and wanting to skill up as you move through life? That is a completely developed mindset. One that you don’t have to be born with, but when you look across industries, that is what most successful leaders have.

 

Greg:

I love that you said it. Cause we, we talked, we talked about the growth mindset all the time. And by the way, I find, I find people with growth mindset, they just, they have bigger goals, have bigger ambitions. They tend to be happier. They tend to be more optimistic. How do you teach that? Because you see some people and you’re like, man, I just want you to be the best version of yourself. But you are so limited in the way you think. How do you help someone find that growth mindset? Or is it just you’re born that way?

 

Ben:

Yeah, no, I think you can help uncover it for folks. And one I’m thinking of I’m coaching right now, a surgeon right now at a, at a huge hospital. And we’re, we’re just having a great time working together. And, and, and one of the pieces that we’re working on with this surgeon is helping understand, kind of, what are the aspects that you could be doing better and realizing that if you do those, if you skill up in these areas, if you adjust a little bit in these areas, it’s going to help you get to where you want to go and achieve what you want to achieve. And so by, kind of, creating that awareness, connecting that to a sense of purpose and urgency. A lot of times you awaken that, Hey, I, now I have understanding of why this matters, why it can do better on this, why it can grow and so forth. So it’s kind of connecting the dots can be so helpful.

 

Greg:

So I have to say, after our dinner last week, and it’s been true of our other conversations also, come in there, we both had long days, you leave with more energy than when we sat down. And it’s because, you know, the growth mindset, right? You talk about the future and listeners are probably sick of hearing me say that. I get this, I get it. But I really believe, as a human being, you absolutely have to believe that your better days are in front of you. If you believe your better — I think that comes with a growth mindset. If you believe your better days are in front of you, even if you’re on your death bed, that leads to happiness. And one of our first conversations, you took me back to childhood. I thought, this guy’s got way too much psychology stuff for me. Right? I’m like you said, like, tell me when you were a kid. Tell me about your mom and dad. Tell me about your siblings. I’m like, alright, enough of this. But I gotta tell you it really helped me connect dots. I wouldn’t have done on my own, i.e., the importance of coaching. It really helped me connect dots on why I do the things I do. So thank you for that. I’m putting reasons more on the why.

 

Here’s what I see happening. How do you help people through those thoughts? It’s interesting. Someone starts out in their profession, you’re working with an all-world surgeon, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods. They all have a lot of coaches. In some industries, including ours, by the way, people get to a level of comfort. They hit their thermostat, their temperature where they believe they belong. How do you help those people say, okay, there’s more out there for you in whatever aspect of your life? And really go seek and get a coach. Because so many people are like, I have obtained X. Now that I know everything. I don’t think a coach anymore. What would you say to that person? How can we shake that person up enough to say, wait a minute, I have to shock the system? Shocking the system will really get you more happiness, results, etc. What do you say to that person that believes that they’ve learned everything there is to learn?

 

Ben:

Where I like to start off with, one of the ways to kind of look at that is — look, we’re in football season right now. Right? So a lot of folks watching the NFL. The, an NFL team, how many players can the NFL team dress out on game day? It’s 46. They can dress out 46 players on game day. Now how many coaches does the average NFL team have? How many coaches do they have? On average 15 to 20 coaches? Oftentimes it’s upwards of 20 to 23. So top-performing organizations with the most elite athletes in the world, the Tom Bradys the, you know, Aaron Rogers, whoever your favorite kind of player is, they invest significantly in coaching. They have multitude of coaches around these top performers. Now why do these top performers have so many coaches? They have so many coaches because even the best can keep getting better. They have coaches to help them push and drive, and if the best can keep getting better, then I think you and I have an opportunity too.

 

Greg:

I think that’s wonderful. And when you think about, you know, the surgeon, for example, this, you know, extremely well regarded nationally and he’s hiring you as a coach. I forget, I heard, I forget. I think Tiger Woods has like four coaches.

 

Ben:

Exactly.

 

Greg:

So you know, for the people listening, coaching matters. Now that may be for you a podcast. You just have to fill your mind with brain candy, positive things, but, you know, but some of that stuff has a sugar high to it. You know, meeting with a coach on a regular basis can really foster that growth mindset, make you a better leader, and get you all that you want, and become the best version of yourself. So thank you for what you’re doing for us. Thank you for what you’re doing for our firm. We really do appreciate your coaching.

 

Let me go to the second part. One of the things you do as a coach is you help us connect with different people. And by the way, if you think like this is too hard to do on the podcast, I understand. But if you could give a brief overview of how you believe that people will fit into the four quadrants. Because for everybody listening, think about, okay, which one am I? Maybe you think about someone that you want to connect better with. And you say, oh I wonder which one they are. And then we can talk about the four different quadrants, because it really does help you connect with people you love.

 

Ben:

Absolutely. And, and let me just make one other comment on the coaching piece and to wrap that up. Is look, Greg. I think you’re spot on about the need for all of us to benefit from a coach. Even more important than a coach I would argue, is having a therapist. And I know, you know, some of us here in the word therapist and kind of think, you know, that that’s weird, that’s for people with, with problems. No, this is actually, a therapist is a coach for all of us, that all of us can benefit from it. It can help with your personal life, with your significant other and relationship. Even if it’s just, check the oil, once every couple months. You know, look up a, a local therapist in near area and you can kind of talk through how things are going from emotional level, especially right now, there’s so much going on in the world. Your mental health is paramount. Those folks can really help as well. So anyway, sorry, Greg. I just wanted to,

 

Greg:

I can throw a quick bullet on that because hopefully it’ll help everyone else. You helped me. When we were having dinner, I just told you one of the things I do is, I do the worst possible outcome. So I think of an event, I’m the guy that, I smell flowers, I look for the casket. I’m the worst possible outcome worrier. And I think a lot of people can relate to being the worst possible outcome worrier. And maybe it’s an Italian thing. Maybe it’s a Catholic thing, but that’s, that’s what I do. And specifically, I do it at two o’clock in the morning and that’s not healthy. And you said something to me, you said, possible, not probable. Just wanna expand on that real quick?

 

Ben:

Yeah, yeah, exactly. This is look, we’re all guilty to different levels of catastrophizing, of really thinking worst case scenario and getting caught up in a lot of worry and anxiety, especially with just all, all everything that’s going on. So one of the things I like to remind to myself is, is it possible or probable? In other words, when I was young, I remember I first found out that the sun is slowly expanding and at some point, the sun might envelop the earth. And so I remember spending nights up awake and be like, oh gosh, when is this going to happen? And can we make it out alive and so forth? We do a lot of that, granted with different topics. So ask yourself, as you find yourself, maybe spinning into a little bit of a downward cycle or worrying about something — is what I’m worrying about, is it possible or probable? In other words, is it possible that what you said to that coworker might be damaging to kind of how they view you and kind of your long-term friendship with them because you gave them some tough feedback? Hey, it’s possible it might damage your relationship permanently, but is it probable? Is it likely that that’s going to happen? Probably not. So how much cognitive space and time do you want to commit to spending thinking about something that’s possible, but not probable. The higher ROI is focusing on what’s probable and working on leveraging that.

 

Greg:

So that’s closely related to something else we talk about a lot and that is can and can’t control, right?

 

Ben:

Yep, exactly.

 

Greg:

So if you just listed, and by the way, doing this on a daily basis is a cool thing. I’ll do it sometimes in the morning, I’ll say, okay, on the left-hand side, I’ll write “list of things I can’t control.” So, the stock market, whatever those things, you know, other people behavior, or whatever, whatever those things are you list everything you can’t control. Everything on CNN and Fox. I can’t control them. By the way, focusing on things you can’t control increases your anxiety. So focusing on things you can’t control increases your anxiety and reduces your results. And then on the other side of the ledger, I do a key chart, bottom right-hand side of my daily planner. And then on the right-hand side, I say, okay, here’s the things I can control. How many clients I talk to? Do I exercise? What I eat. All of those things I can control. And by focusing on things, you can control you and increase your results and actually you reduce your anxiety. So just a way for everyone to take their pulse is to say, okay, during the day, we’ll get that assessment later. If you say, okay, what can I focus on today? What percentage of the time did I focus on things I can’t control and what percentage of the days did I spend focused on things I can control? And the more you move to the right side of the ledger “can,” the more you will be happy, less anxious, better results. Fair?

 

Ben:

Exactly, spot on. And here’s what the cognitive research shows. It shows that basically if you spend time thinking and finding solutions for topics that you cannot control, in other words, coming up with solutions for something that you actually can’t implement that solution, what happens cognitively is when you come up with that solution and the brain seeks to resolve, seeks to implement that solution, and you can’t because it’s out of your control the brain starts dialing back cognitive resources, long-term problem solving. So you actually might detrimentally reduce the ability to solve problems you can control by focusing on that which you cannot. Marines do a really good job of this in bootcamp. The culmination of Marine Corps bootcamp includes something called the crucible, which is the last really painful part. And they really emphasize there: focus on what you can control, focus on what’s in front of you. That’s when you’re going to get the best results.

 

Greg:

The other thing we talked about, what I think is important because there are a lot of people, I think type A where it’s like, we, we immediately react, right? Instead of, and we were talking about the example of, you can feel that adrenaline, but then you have to assess the situation. So I’m sure a lot of listeners, you get that adrenaline rush. Can you explain that, and a better way to manage through that? And if you just want to expand upon that, that’d be great.

 

Ben:

Yeah. So there’s two parts of the brain that really impact behavior, the neocortex and the limbic system. The limbic system is the more reactive, instinctual, emotional fight-or-flight based in the limbic. It’s oftentimes called the lizard brain or caveman or cave woman brain. Neocortex is more of the higher functioning, CEO, long-term thinking, strategic analysis. What Greg was mentioning there is basically a limbic response to something. So something happens, that stimuli goes into the thalamus, which is kind of at the brain stem and the thalamus distributes that information to the limbic and neocortex. We’re at a significant disadvantage if we allow a limbic response. In other words, we stay in our limbic in responding to whatever that situation may be, because what the research finds is in our limbic, we’re much less creative. We’re, we take in less data, and we’re much more reactive in the limbic.

 

So we want to move to the neocortex. How do you move to the neocortex? It’s by being more aware of what we’re saying to ourselves, which is called self-talk. Self-talk is what we say to ourselves. We speak about thousand words a minute consciously and unconsciously in our self-talk. And so you’ll want to be aware of the self-talk. The easiest way to be aware of it is a little acronym I created, I call it triple-A, A-A-A. First A is, be aware of what you’re saying to yourself. So something happening in the world, you’re on a phone call with a client. You’re watching your kids, whatever it might be, you start spinning, right? You’d get, self-talk going. Be aware of it. Don’t judge it. Don’t react to it. Second A is, assess it. Assess it. Assessment is two questions. One is what I’m saying to myself accurate? Is what I’m saying to myself accurate? And two, is what I’m saying to myself, going to get me to the top performing emotions of happiness, confidence, gratitude. Happiness, confidence, gratitude are the top-performing emotions from which we make the best decisions, best strategic thinking and so forth.

 

So ask yourself those two questions. If both of those questions are yes, I’m being accurate and whatever I’m saying to myself is going to lead to that top performing emotion of happiness, confidence, gratitude, you’re a self-talk champion. Keep doing it. If not, if either one of those questions is no, then you’ve got to go to the third A. You gotta go to adjusting your self-talk, adjust your self-talk. So that instead of saying to yourself, I can’t believe he just did this to me. That was the most, rudest most inappropriate thing he’s ever done. Fair to have that reaction. But if you stay in that self-talk space, you’re not going to move into the neocortex and the higher performing emotion. So say to yourself, something like, Hey, that was rude. I’m not sure if he’s aware of the impact of what he said and how he said that. You know, maybe at some point I should just give him a little bit of feedback, so he understands how that came across to me and some of the others, and maybe helping him improve there. That’ll help make him a stronger team member.

 

Greg:

That is so powerful. So first, it’s just, be aware. We’ve all had that feeling. I mean, everyone listening, it’s like, yeah, I know that feeling, right? I get that rush. Just being aware of it. I mean, I have become more aware of it in working with you. But, like, you have that feeling, right? And then the self-talk is so powerful. What did you say? Thousand words per minute?

 

Ben:

Exactly.

 

Greg:

And once you dwell on it, you multiply. So just really powerful. And it’s interesting doing those two. It really has helped the adjustment to, I don’t know, to, to have a better response. Instead of, you know, being the fire person that runs into the burning building without understanding where you’re going and being logical about it.

 

Ben:

Exactly. And Greg, this applies to our, you know, being a Navy Intel guy, I get an opportunity to interact and work with different communities within the within our military. And this is something that applies to special operators. They perform best, even in the midst of firefights, even the midst of really difficult times, they perform best in an emotional state of happiness, confidence, gratitude. And they’re actually weeded out. They’re actually selected based on their, in part, based on their ability to perform in the neocortex and stay out of the limbic for long periods of time.

 

Greg:

That’s wonderful. Thank you so much. So let’s go. If we want to connect with people, especially with technology today, we were talking about in an earlier meeting and they’re like, well, we’re going to get a do everything online. I’m like, we don’t want to do everything online. Well, we’re going to call centers. I’m like, we’re not going to be that. Like we’re not doing that. We really want to be able to connect. The ability to connect is powerful. And I worry through texting and emails that we’ve lost, to some extent, the ability to connect. So one of the tools that you’ve shown us on how you connect is to understand that we have different personalities. With that overview, do you want me to like go through an overview of the four quadrants?

 

Ben:

Absolutely. Yeah. So many of your many listeners might have, have gone through or heard of Myers Briggs or DISC. These are great personality models. We have one that we call our communication style model. Similar, but some, some little, little differences. So each of us is a combination of four personality styles, Analyst, Director, Friend, Expert. Analyst, Director, Friend, Expert. Each of us is a combination of all four. There’s no right or wrong, good or bad. The key piece is this: first, being aware of what is your dominant style. If you had to pick one or two of these and, and I’ll share with them, share you with you, what they are briefly. But if you had to pick one or two, what tend to be your dominant style or styles when you’re working? And I say working because some of us have different styles at home.

 

So we’ll focus at the moment on your work. So what’s your dominant style. The second piece to be aware of is what is the dominant style of the person in front of me? Or the person on the phone? Or the person on the, on the computer screen? And the third step, to really connect, build trust is how can I adapt? How can I adjust just a little bit to communicate in a way as the person in front of me would communicate? That is called empathy. When you look at trust, the research around trust is really fascinating and it’s, and it’s going to be very intuitive to all of you. One, what the research finds is that people start evaluating whether to trust you or not immediately, within a 10th of a second. Furthermore, that trust evaluation never stops. So our significant other, our children, our longest-term client, all those people are still evaluating whether to trust us or not, every minute of every day.

 

Now, hopefully most of us don’t have wild swings on the trust score, but they are evaluating us. So how can we score high on the trust for leveraging this personality profile piece? You gotta understand how do people evaluate? They evaluate you and comprise their trust score of you based on two components: one, their evaluation of your expertise is Ben knowledgeable? Does he know what he’s talking about? Does he understand the industry? Does he understand competitors? Does he understand other products and so forth? Second component is empathy. Does Ben understand what it’s like to be in my shoes? Does he understand the fears, concerns, frustrations I have? People place a far greater weight on empathy than expertise. So you got to score high on empathy. How can you score highest on empathy? By doing what I said, which is adjusting to the style in front of you. So that’s kind of how we’ve got to be now, Greg, what I can do if you want—

 

Greg:

By the way, Ben, just on that, because I worry a little bit about that, because the listeners, you know, it’s not manipulative, it’s just to help you, I need to get in your shoes. So I’ll drop it. But if you’re an Analyst and I’m not giving you specific information, I can’t help you make a great decision. Or if you’re a Director and I’ll throw out some words that I’m sure you’ll go through, if you’re a Director and I’m not giving you bullet points, you’re going to stop paying attention to me. So really, what it is, in our world is, you know, and with your loved ones and with, you know, in business, you just have to speak in a way that connects with the other person, put yourself in their shoes. So then you can help them make a better decision. Is that fair?

 

Ben:

That’s it exactly.

 

Greg:

It’s not manipulative.

 

Ben:

It’s not, and in fact, I’m going to get mushy on you, but it’s the greatest way to love, honor and respect someone. If you really want to honor and love them and respect them, you’re going to communicate in a way that makes the most sense to them. That makes it the easiest for them to understand and digest information and make decisions. And so that’s what we’re trying to do. And just a little bit of adaptation. Greg goes a very long way on this. So—

 

Greg:

So we, one of our core values: It’s about you. Meaning, it’s about you, it’s you, it’s about you, the client. If it’s really about you, we, it’s more important that we speak in your language, not ours.

 

Ben:

Exactly.

 

Greg:

If you’re a relationship person that wants bullet points and we’re killing you with details, we haven’t helped you. Or if you’re an engineer and we haven’t given you details, we haven’t helped you. So understanding how you want to receive the information. And oh by the way, we do this in several different ways. One, we use all those things Ben talked about. We also help families with this. So we’re learning, and Ben you may, you may have heard of Personalysis. We’re learning how to become cert— we’re becoming certified on Personalysis so that we can meet with families and help them understand how the different family members can communicate. Because one of the biggest reasons that people end up squandering money or there ends up being a missed issue with money is because there’s a lack of communication.

 

And if we can help people understand family members better, that will allow them to communicate better and have better results from a legacy of the family’s wealth. So it’s not only internally because we put together teams internally by this, it’s also worked with our clients is how we communicate with clients. So it just shows you the importance regardless of how you look at this. So I threw out some things like Analyst, Director, Friend. Do you want to just go through, do you want to go through the four quadrants and just like give a bullet point on who they are and like how you identify and communicate with them?

 

Ben:

Absolutely. Yeah. And, and I’ll give you a quick and easy ways to pick up what is the dominant style you’re dealing with. And then I’ll give you some quick tools how to adapt to them, to ultimately score high on empathy, thus winning trust. So the first style is the Analyst, good example of Analyst is someone like Bill Gates is an analyst or Spock from Star Trek. So these folks tend to speak at a slower pace than others. They also tend to be less emotional in their speech. They like a lot of information and data. They like to take time in making decisions. So how do you adapt to these folks? How do you talk their language? Very important: you slow things down. They value precision. They value the avoidance of mistakes. So you want to show that you are doing your due diligence. You want to give them the black-and-white data.

 

If you come to them with a couple of glossy colorful pages, they’re going to think to themselves, Hey, what’s, what’s, where’s the meat behind this thing? What’s the real deeper dive on this? It’s also very important with Analysts that you talk about risk. If you go to an Analyst and only lead with upside and you don’t talk about the possible exposure, they’re going to think to themselves, one of two things, one, Ben knows what the risk is, but he’s hiding it or two, Ben doesn’t know what the risk is. He doesn’t know what the downside is. So it’s very important for us to share what is the exposure. And in fact, I even like leading with that, Hey, Mrs. Analysts, we’ve got a couple, two, two products here I’d like to share with you now with the first one, just as with everything else, hey, it’s not a perfect product. There is some, some exposure here and wanted to give you some research around that. And some understanding that, and overall, I think there’s a lot of positive here that we could leverage and make this really work well for us. Here’s the data around that. And then I’m going to do the same for the second product. How about a week from tomorrow? We touch base and see if you’re willing to make a decision. So give them time, set a deadline, give them data, talk about the risks, critical for Analysts.

 

Greg:

Yeah, we have a lot of financial advisors that listen to this, so that’s great. But what about for, like when you add, when you think about a lot of the other folks, who listen are our clients, which tend to be business owners, people that are trying to figure this out in their personal relationships. So if you’re thinking from a business owner or someone that you know is thinking about, okay, I wonder which one is my spouse, like, how should I alter my communications? Like I did one of these things in the past and what — they also analyzed my wife, and what I learned was like, she’ll have, like, if I say, let’s go to Italy tomorrow, it freaks her out. If I say like, Hey, why don’t we go to Italy in, whatever, December, she’s all in. So, you know, as you learn your spouse’s communication pattern, it helps you. So let’s think about it from, loved ones and as a business owner, like how would you communicate with them differently? Or how should they communicate?

 

Ben:

Yeah. And a great book that touches on exactly where you’re saying, Greg is “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. So I recommend that to any folks, whenever I’m counseling folks, I’m a minister as well. And so when I’m, when I’m counseling folks who are getting ready to get married, that’s, that’s one of the top books that I suggest, to do exactly that. And the research shows, oftentimes, we pick significant others that have different styles than we have. And psychologists argue that part of the reason that may be the case is because they have strengths we don’t have, and we have strengths in vice versa.

 

Greg, so let’s look at the four quadrants. On the first quadrant, on Analysts. So Analysts very important. They like the details. They want data, they want information. They like taking time making decisions. So it’s very helpful with them to give them the full picture, to help them understand what are the possibilities, what are the options, give them time to digest. And when you think about a loved one that that wants time to kind of think through possible vacation spots, let them see the options. And don’t rush an Analyst. That can be very negative in blowing up trust with an analyst.

 

For the Director, Director style, they like make faster decisions. They don’t need as much information. And in fact, they can get frustrated if you keep kind of second guessing or bringing back a new option to the table rather than just kind of laying out the full options and, and the reasons why from a very high level. Two to three reasons why you think this is the best option and then executing from there, they’re also very time-sensitive, Directors are. So you want to be very efficient in your communication and interaction.

 

The third style is the Friend. Friend, just give you a celebrity example of a Friend, like Jennifer Aniston from Friends or Warren Buffet from investor, is a good example of Friends. They’re very relationship oriented. They’re looking for win-wins. So if you can provide them ways and actions that will benefit the good of the all, the good of the family, the good of the community, how this is going to help folks that they care about. That’s where you get real wins with Friends. It’s also very important with Friends that you share the personal side of things and the personal reason for making decisions. And then the fourth and final style is an Extrovert. Someone like an as an Extrovert, like a Whoopi Goldberg or Richard Branson, these folks love taking risks. They love trying new things. It’s important to kind of cast big visions for them. Lead with the positive with Extroverts. Lead, with the upside and the opportunity that gets them motivated. And they also are, it’s very important to give Extroverts kind of positive feedback. So just briefly, those are the four styles that we can kind of look at.

 

Greg:

It’s really cool. So that helped me in my leadership style. I don’t know if you remember, I took it back— which one am I? Right? I mean, which one am I? So I want to understand who I am, so then I can figure out how I can improve. And so, you said I’m, you mentioned three, do you recall, or do you want me to go through them?

 

Ben:

Yeah. I mean, you got Director, a Friend, and a little bit of Extrovert.

 

Greg:

Yeah. And then you said Analyst, but not, not, not in the way that it gets in the way. Right?

 

Ben:

Right.

 

Greg:

So, so here, so, so to understand this, here’s where it helps — this is why you need a coach. Here’s where it helped me in my leadership style, you said, your Friend with Director qualities, and that’s diagonal, if you would put it on a chart.

 

Ben:

Yep.

 

Greg:

Do you want to tell people like, now they understand this, I’m trying to help our team and Confluence understand so they don’t feel like you know, it’s jerky leadership, but do you want to explain what the challenges are with that?

 

Ben:

Sure, absolutely. So normally you see, when people have kind of two dominant styles, they’re normally kind of adjacent to each other. So like a Friend/Analyst or Friend/Extrovert or Extrovert/Director or Director/Analyst. In your case, it’s kind of a, it’s diagonal. So one of the challenges that, just as an example, that a Friend-slash-Director would have is Directors can be very bottom line, very task oriented. At time, Directors can be perceived of as real taskmasters, not real caring, not sensitive, not understanding kind of what folks are going through personally and professionally. So that can be a challenge. Now, Friends on the opposite end of the spectrum are very good at understanding what are people going through, connecting, understanding, trying to be supportive and so forth. So just in that example, you can have a Director/Friend who people could possibly feel as there’s a little like Dr. Jekyll, Mr. Hyde there, which, what am I getting at what time? And, and, and kind of uncertainty around why, and what’s the cause and reasoning. That’s just one of the reasons why it’s so helpful to kind of, when you’re working with a team, to have an understanding of what’s everyone’s dominant style. And they can actually say, ah, that’s the Director coming out, or that’s the Friend and so forth.

 

Greg:

Yeah. Thank you. And by the way, for the listeners, we can, the quadrants. If you want to go through the quadrants, we have them, we have, we have them in our office, reach out to your advisor and give us a call. And we’ll take you through those. You want to do with your family, Personalysis. You know, we can do that also. Where we can sit down and we can help you maybe understand the quadrants a little more detail, and maybe also understand, you know, how to communicate better as a family, or even in your leadership in your business. You know, like what, which one are you? And one of the things Ben says to me is, yeah, you’re everybody’s friend, but you’re very task oriented and very goal oriented. So he said, just help people understand that when you become that, it’s from a good spot. You just want everybody to be the best version of yourself, of themself. So that’s been really helpful to me and the offer to anyone listening to this, we stand ready to help you and/or your family become better communicators, so you can optimize your results. Fair?

 

Ben:

Love it.

 

Greg:

Okay. Let’s do real quick thing on feedback.

 

Ben:

So, you know, and we, we kind of started this discussion around coaching and the importance of it. Just a quick example of the importance of feedback, Greg, is, we were working with a company, and it was a sales organization and leadership kind of identified the two groups that we’re going to go through in the Salesforce. It was going to go through this training and they the, the leader decided to break up the group into two groups and he put the kind of bottom 50% of, of kind of team members to receive the training first. And then the top 50% leaders receive the training second. And so he said, once he kind of got that going, he immediately got a lot of criticism from both groups. The, the lower performers were complaining that they had to go through this training at all. And the top performers were complaining that they had to wait to go second to get the training. So it was—

 

Greg:

So, top performers want feedback?

 

Ben:

Yeah.

 

Greg:

Right? And so like, I don’t know, I was a C student, so I didn’t like report card day, right? I was feedback — I didn’t want it. My brother was like an A student, he liked that day. So bad day for Greg, good day for my brothers and sisters. So feedback is powerful and mirror is powerful. And as leaders, it is so interesting to me, how we, we are challenged to give people feedback. And many times, they want it.

 

Ben:

Yep.

 

Greg:

Now there’s a lot of different ways to do feedback, whether it’s self-assessment, 360, in fact, you may want to mention how we’re doing 360 feedback in here. It’s really cool. So if you can just talk about that and why it’s important, why that’s important, but also, if you’re going to give feedback to someone, which is really powerful, and that just means you care enough about them to talk to them about how to improve, are there ways to do that?

 

Ben:

Yeah. So we’re, we’re using with Greg a 360 tool, which is getting — 360 meaning kind of 360 degrees of a circle, meaning getting feedback from folks that are kind of peers, folks that are above you, folks that are below you. And when you can do that, kind of, holistically, you can really get some rich data to understand what are the opportunities, what are their strengths for someone? And so specifically with—

 

Greg:

So by the way, my children are doing this also. I mean, I have three girls and a daughter-in-law that is like my daughter, I’m going to tell you, I’m going to have to have some thick skin like, you know what I mean? I get it. But it’ll make us better, so it’s all good.

 

Ben:

I love it. And, and not many folks that I work with one-on-one asked to have family members involved in their 360. So I love that you’re, you’re open to that. And I can’t wait to dig into that! That’s, that’s awesome. So, so one of the things — look with, with giving feedback, few people love giving critical feedback. I mean, who enjoys going into a room being like, great, I’m going to sit this person down and tell them all the misses they’ve had or all the things that they’re doing that are frustrating me. Very few people actually get excited about it. So it feels very difficult, uncomfortable. And to what Greg was touching on there earlier is, it’s so helpful. I think to have the mindset going in of, Hey, this, giving feedback is one of the greatest gifts I can give this person. Because if I really do love honor and respect them, I want them to do as best they can.

 

I want them to live as full a life as possible. And you know what, some of what I might be seeing could be inhibiting that full potential. So if I want them to be happy and full here, let me give them some feedback. So that I think it’s important to roll in with the right mindset here when you’re approaching it. And then Greg, I’d be happy to give them a little tool around how I think you can actually deliver feedback.

 

Greg:

Absolutely.

 

Ben:

So the tool we developed, and I really love, is this idea of camera check feedback. And it’s this idea of giving feedback that a video camera or your phone could hear or see. And for camera check feedback, we have an acronym it’s, that I developed for camera check. So it’s C, chronology. Give the day and the time when you’re giving someone feedback. So in other words, Ben, today at the meeting, at the family meeting, this morning at the breakfast table.

 

Okay? So start with chronology. It’s important, so that Ben will then start dialing back cognitively to what happened this morning and has a better frame of reference to understand the behavior. Next, is A, so accuracy. You want to give the specific behavior, what you specifically saw that person do. Now, so many of us at times say things like, oh, you know, he’s just not paying attention to details, or, you know, Ben’s not considerate, or whatever the case may be. It’s not that helpful. You want to dig into the specifics of what you saw. So accuracy really matters in giving the feedback. So state a specific observation, what you saw. Ben, having breakfast today, you know, you were chewing with your mouth open, right? Be specific. Then M, in camera is meaning. Describe the impact of the bad behavior. What’s the impact of Ben chewing with his mouth open? Tell them the impact, because they might not know why that matters.

 

Hey Ben, you’re doing that. You know, you’re, it’s a bad kind of role model for kids when they’re seeing, and they’re going to start doing the same thing, and that’s not just good kind of manners when they get older. So that’s M. E is enhancement. Tell them how to improve. Don’t just tell them they’re, they’re chewing with their mouth open. Tell them how to improve, say, Hey, Ben, you know, next time, if you’ve had some, it sounds like you were kind of wanting to talk while you’re eating. Hey next time, finish chewing that bite. Then once you’ve kind of finished that bite, then share what you wanted to share that you were really excited about. And then R is a result. What’s the impact of that? That way, you know, everyone’s going to feel better. The girls are going to have a better kind of role model to follow around table manners. And then lastly is A, is give it at once, timely. Don’t wait to give feedback, you know, a month later when you’ve built up five or six things, you want to tell that person. Give them the feedback as you get it. So Greg that’s CAMERA and that’s how you can use it day in and day out.

 

Greg:

Yeah. That’s powerful, I heard you do that maybe a month or two ago, and I use it internally. And you know, I heard, I heard someone say that the difference between a good coach and a bad coach is like, a good coach— a bad coach is like, you know, to an offensive lineman, Get in the backfield, get in the backfield, get in the backfield! But a good coach tells you how to do it. You take a step and take out your right arm. They tell you step by step how to do it. I think the benefit of CAMERA is it not only allows you to give feedback, it allows you to be the good coach to give effective feedback. Because sometimes that why it’s not received well, right? So, because it’s not effective feedback. It’s just like, Hey, stop doing that, it gets on my nerves. Yeah. Well, I don’t care if chewing with my mouth open gets on your nerves, right? It’s not really taking it through CAMERA. So that’s powerful.

 

The other thing that’s interesting is, really powerful for people to do self-assessment. I really think part of being successful is being aware and self-aware, and they’re a little different. But, you know, self-assessments obviously very, very powerful also, but you know, feedback’s great, right? Some people like feedback as long as it’s positive, but if we really want to improve, we really need to get feedback. And so, can encourage everyone out there to give feedback and use CAMERA. So thank you so much.

 

Ben:

Absolutely. And I’ll just say, one other thing about, about feedback is, and you, you mentioned this is, not only give corrective feedback using CAMERA, but also give positive feedback using CAMERA. In other words, don’t just say, Hey, Ben you know, great job in that meeting today, or thanks for helping around the house. Be specific, say, Hey Ben, thanks for doing the dishes. This morning that helped me get the kids ready while you were cleaning up after breakfast. Really appreciate it. Be specific. They’re more likely to repeat that behavior when you tell them specifically what they did and what the impact of that was.

 

Greg:

Yeah. Two good friends of mine, Tom Bartow and Jason Selk. They do executive coaching, and they talk about self-assessment and sorry, guys, if I get the numbers wrong, but they say, Okay, every day, at the end of the day, you should say, okay, here’s three things I’ve done well today. Be specific. Here’s one thing that did not work that I messed up. And then, here’s one thing I’m going to change for tomorrow. I’m going to do better tomorrow. So and the reason it’s three to one, is to your point Ben, what you, what you dwell on you multiply, right? So there’s three of those and it’ll encourage you — first of all, it’s great for state of mind because you’re focusing on positives — and when you watch athletes, it is interesting, like, you know, if an athlete is being interviewed after a game. Here’s everything we did well. Here’s where we need to improve or something that didn’t work. So they do this naturally, but doing a self-assessment and really taking inventory of the things you do well puts you in a better state of mind, but also it makes sure you repeat those behaviors.

 

Thanks for listening. If you’d like to hear other subject matters that may be of interest to you. Please check us out at ConfluenceFP.com/podcasts.

Meet Dr. Ben Sorensen, leader, entrepreneur, author, lawyer, soldier, and coach. As a renowned provider of leadership training, sales training and executive coaching, Ben has extensive experience helping individuals overcome obstacles, elevate their performance, and achieve their greatest goals. Join host and Partner of Confluence Financial Partners, Greg Weimer, as he and Dr. Sorensen discuss the benefits of coaching, how to be “coachable,” and how to coach others. For anyone looking to make improvements — in any discipline — and become the best versions of themselves, this episode can help you get there.

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