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Unlock the Power of the Inner Genius

This article was based on episode 235 of The Modern Manager podcast. To hear this episode, and many more like it, you can subscribe to The Modern Manager Podcast on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Amazon, and Stitcher. Members of the Modern Manager community get two months of Fast Forward membership for free. Never miss a worksheet, episode or article: subscribe to Mamie’s newsletter.


Are your team members fired up about the work they do? Does it seem like they gain energy from their work activities rather than expend it? Your answer may be due to whether or not they’re tapping into their inner genius. Our inner genius is that part of us that just lights us up when we’re engaged in our unique set of optimal activities. When we’re connected to our inner genius, time seems to speed by while we are totally absorbed in the task at hand.

Many of us experience our inner genius while doing hobbies, but how incredible would it be if we could tap into that flow state at work as well? Catherine Mattiske has figured out how to help individuals identify their inner genius and apply it to work. Catherine is a leading global business educator and author. She is the founder of TPC — The Performance Company, an international training and consulting organization that has worked with Fortune 100 companies worldwide. Established in 1994, TPC has offices in Sydney, Los Angeles, New York, London, Singapore, and Basel (Switzerland). The author of more than 30 books, her latest is Unlock Inner Genius: Power Your Path to Extraordinary Success.

Catherine shares a high level overview of the inner genius concepts, including the twelve inner genius archetypes, so managers can enable each person to contribute their individual talents to collective goals.

THE TWELVE ARCHETYPES

The twelve archetypes are split into four distinct groups; the Big Whys, the Detailers, the Constructors, and the Inventors.

The Big Whys

The Decrypter, the Arranger, and the Catalyst all love to understand. They love working with people, problem solving, and asking inquisitive questions.

The Detailers

The Scribe, the Valedictorian, and the Horologist are very structured. They thrive on being practical, fact driven, and efficient. They put ideas into practice.

The Constructors

The Cartographers, Composers, and Masons are methodical, but love to get their hands dirty. They take ideas and details and get things done. They love taking ownership and getting people going on a project.

The Inventors

The Energizer, Futurist, and Explorer are all visionaries who love dreaming up the next idea. They ask where we are going. They are both entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial; they are cheerleaders for their team, excited to push everyone along to the next step.

UNLEASH THE GENIUS INSIDE

Identify Your Archetype

The best thing you can do as a manager is to help your people spend more time on tasks that are aligned to their archetype. To start, you need to know each person’s inner genius. Catherine offers multiple approaches to identifying your category or archetype. The simplest is to have everyone on your team complete a ten minute Inner Genius profile. Alternatively, consider what activities in and out of work get you into that flow state. Then deconstruct those activities to identify what traits they have and look for themes.

Open Up the Conversation

Rather than assigning people to tasks, consider asking people what they would like to contribute to a project. When people volunteer from their place of genius, amazingly innovative ideas and energy come out! Rather than confining people to their role or title, take the time to discuss and decide with your teammates who will do what to get the work done best.

Use the Right Language

Catherine says we can find clues into people’s archetype via their choice of words. We use language that mirrors how we process information. For example, a Catalyst who is always considering the Big Whys looks for meaning behind things while also problem solving. They may use words like “I have a concrete proposal” or “Let’s change gears”. A Futurist Inventor, on the other hand, will say things like “Let’s uncover the details” or “Let’s brainstorm more”. Consider changing your language to resonate with the archetype you’re dealing with for better communication. Catherine even offers an archetype translator on her website, if you’re searching for the right words for an email or conversation with a different archetype colleague!

Bring It All Together

As a team, we can complement each other by bringing our unique gifts. If you notice your team is staffed with all Constructors, you may want to hire for or find advisors who can help your team leverage the strengths of the other archetypes. A well balanced team will help unlock the full potential of the collective inner genius.

Our goal as manager is to have people working from their place of genius. When we understand who our teammates are, we can help create the context for them to thrive. Open up the conversation to your team; let them volunteer or offer ideas for how they can best contribute. And apply these same lessons to yourself. Then, observe what power emerges when your team is all fired up from working from their place of strength!


KEEP UP WITH CATHERINE

The Performance Company Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThePerformanceCompany/


Get 50% Off the Inner Genius Profile to make the way you work more effective when you become a member of the Modern Manager community at themodernmanager.com/join.


This article was based on episode 235 of The Modern Manager podcast. To hear this episode, and many more like it, you can subscribe to The Modern Manager Podcast on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Amazon, and Stitcher. Never miss a worksheet, episode or article: subscribe to Mamie’s newsletter.


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