Friday, April 14, 2006

What Flavor Are You?

Mediators come in flavors (transformative, evaluative) and so do entrepreneurs. I see it when I coach business owners, especially when it comes time to hire a second-in-command or groom someone to take over the business.

There are two new books available that speak to the notion of types of entrepreneurial personalities. If you're curious (and you should be if you're considering starting an ADR business or have an existing one), check out
these titles:

Ten Faces of Innovation by Tom Kelley. Tom explores several types of personalities that drive innovation. I was thrilled to see that my work as an Ombuds fits into the anthropologist type, meaning I seek to understand how groups interact and make meaning. In terms of my business, I'm more of an experimenter, which means I'll try new things and refine them until the fit is right.

My friend, and emerging entrepreneur, Erin Ferraguto, is also a great experimenter. She started a number of terrific businesses in the five years I've known her, including a very successful scrap booking business and her current custom-designed hand-knit handbags and accessories. What I love about Erin is that she has a very positive "can-do" attitude and is always willing to learn. If you're the same, you may be an experimenter too.

The other book is The Entrepreneur Next Door by Bill Wagner. According to Bill, entrepreneurs can be categorized into two main groups: generalists and specialists. I say most ADR types are specialists with an authority type personality. That means we're very conscientious, patient, accommodating by nature and function with a high degree of expertise. The down side is that because of our accommodating nature we don't like prospecting or getting the business; we prefer business to come to us (sound familiar?)

I find this kind of analysis to be incredibly useful, and so will you. Check out these books.

Try. Fail. Learn. Grow.



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