Talent Ought-ism: the Mobilize TalentsApr 18, 2023
One Style Does Not Move All
I had the opportunity to be in leadership roles in high school and college. When I entered young adulthood I figured with my experience and the books I had read that I was prepared to lead and influence others at a high level.
When I found myself in a position of leadership, I would often think of how the coaches, teachers, and authority figures in my life had motivated me, and replicated the same recipe. The results were an epic failure. All because I fell into the fourth Ought-ism of Mobilize talents. “Everyone is motivated like me or at least they should be if they know what’s good for them.”
Three of the Mobilize talents, Developer, Positivity, and Woo, have a softer roll in how they motivate, influence, or persuade others. Chad’s Positivity and Woo served him well connecting with people in his real estate business. But he could easily get flustered when someone was more negative or businesslike in relating to him or his clients because he felt the upbeat energy of optimism was the only way to go in dealing with people. As one young influencer with Positivity said, “Those of us with this talent are not good at being empathetic because we may be working harder to help you see the silver lining rather than stand in the rain with you.”
Understanding how others are motivated is very important for those with the harder persuaders like Command, Competition, and Maximizer. Amanda is an outstanding consultant whose Maximizer helps her drive clients out of mental mediocrity or performance comfort zones to new levels of excellence. However, she can get frustrated when others have a low bar of what they call good. “I have to keep tabs on my Maximizer or it will cause me to be easily annoyed with those who settle for the least they can do.”
It’s not that the drive to motivate people to a desired outcome or goal is wrong. It’s when we impose our unique brand of motivating as the only way people should be attaining results in their lives. Danny’s drive to win showed up in his managing style by creating regular contests or having special incentives for his team to shoot for. “My Competition talent always created more engagement and performance in what I did so I just thought everyone loved to compete and would do better in that kind of environment. So I was caught off guard when one of my team asked me ‘Why does everything we do have to be a competition?’ "Dan realized he was exhibiting the Ought-ism of his Mobilize quadrant by believing that everyone is motivated the same way he is.
Here’s a perspective to help when we find ourselves in the Magenta shade of Ought-ism. Having a strong mobilizer like Command I have had to learn the art of mobilizing through questions. Instead of assuming others are motivated like me or that I know how to inspire them I simply ask them “What motivates you? What gets you excited to bring your best? When you think of being productive what do you see yourself doing?” It is with this insight I can now align them with our goals and inspire them to bring their best to the desired outcome.