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Dynamic Diagonal Duos - Thought Rockets & Super Drivers

Catty-corner is an expression meaning “diagonally opposite.” It has nothing to do with cats but actually came from an English misspelling of the French word quatre (“four”) prefixed to “corner.” And it is exactly what I think of when it comes to Bob and Brenda and their CoreClarity CoreDrills. They were both bi-quads (all their Top 5 talents fell into two quadrants) but the inversion of each other.  Brenda’s talents were all in the Connect and Energize quadrants while Bob’s were in the Reflect and Mobilize. These catty-corner profiles create two unique CoreDrills that show up less than 2% of the time but bring an indelible dynamic to a team.

They both worked in the same company and left a similar wake with co-workers. Yet their approach to people and problems could not be more different. Bob was a Thought Rocket and as such was very vested and productive especially when using his Reflect talents. He could shift into a motivational force when certain challenges aligned with his wheelhouse of talents. He gravitated to cutting edge projects and would bring deep intellectual prowess to the table while at other times lighting a fire to launch others. 

Teammates said Bob was either hot or cold and it could be hard to read him. Part of the talent dynamic with a Thought Rocket is they can look “all in” when working or leading others but “all out” when recharging in their personal think tank. “I’d rather work with a group than by myself when it comes to outputs but when it’s time for planning, brainstorming, or just intellectually processing I want to be left alone.”

Brenda was a Super Driver which means she constantly connects with people while getting things done or does things that will involve her with people. While a Thought Rocket can look either “all off” or “all on” a Super Driver can appear to have no “Off” switch. With people around and things to do, they are perpetually driving performance or outputs. Brenda easily adapted to a manager role because in her department it was all about getting stuff done with people.

Super Drivers can appear very hands on and in the moment. They enjoy working with others especially when roles and responsibilities are defined. Some want to know their lane and are happy to stay in it. Unlike Bob, Brenda’s intrinsic drive of her Energize talents can keep her just as engaged working alone. Her “lean on green” made her an in the moment manager while learning on the fly. Super Drivers thrive when the heat is on and things are beehive busy. 

However, resign them to a slower pace or role coming off the bench and they may get antsy and disengaged.  Brenda’s Super Drive mode would sometimes create more output than the product line could get out the door. She was lapping her team and was asked by her boss to focus on other things not related to her people or outcomes. This was hard for her to compute. “I feel like I am not doing my job or compromising my work ethic if I’m not pushing onward and upward.”  

The uniqueness of these CoreDrills and their wake is fascinating. Because they are uncommon they’ll always stand out. But their uncommonness and different styles of thrust can sometimes be misunderstood. So assisting Thought Rockets to regulate their “jets” with others and helping Super Drivers understand not everyone has their same express lane can lead to boosting them to even greater results.

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