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Comprehensive Insights Into The Author (CORE assessment,


Of the four Dominant Quadrants (Builder, Merchant, Innovator, Banker) my scores indicate MERCHANT/INNOVATOR tendencies.

When an M/I enters a room there is more love and wisdom energy suddenly in that room. You are the presence of wise love. This is your assignment, to be the effective presence of wise love. You look at the circumstances and situations around you through the eyes of truth and compassion.

You operate from reason and cognitive thinking, to learn who people really are, and what they need and want. You focus on nurturing and supporting others and yourself. This is balanced by your intuitive/reasoning capacity to see the ways things are. You observe situations until you understand, providing the best responses, strategies and solutions. Your highest and best contribution can only be made in situations in which there is a significant and constant need for wise love.

Who you are at the deepest innate level of your human nature is the most important element in your life. Who you are at this deep level, is, after all, the only thing you really contribute to this world. It is through right assignment and effective choices that you make your highest and best contribution. This is the universal mission of all people.

The more you learn about who you really are, and how to optimize your presence in this world, the greater will be your success, happiness and life effectiveness.

Your dominant Merchant value energy is balanced by your Innovator secondary value energy. Your actions are routinely, almost equally, guided by these two core energies. In times of distress you will usually rely on the conflict strategies of your dominant core energy. In less critical conflicts you may use either conflict strategy given the situation.

Your cornerstone core value is love. Building and sustaining relationships is central to your life's strategy. You are constantly working to know and understand the truth about yourself and others.

You like to have a good sense of connection between what you are doing today and what you see in your future. You like discovering new possibilities, and you consistently watch for them. Nothing feels right when the people you value are distant or are in conflict. You have a natural enthusiasm and like to be in situations that are fully engaging and energized. No potential plan, idea or possibility gets by you. A core strategy for you is to work effectively with others. Share your knowledge and information with others; you enjoy it and others appreciate it.

You are good at getting others to work for and with you. Choosing your words carefully works well for you. Feeling a sense of togetherness with people gives you confidence. You like a new charge in your life and you like to be the charge in the lives of others. You like to trust people and to share yourself with them freely. You enjoy lots of different people and activities. Charm and enthusiasm are part of your arsenal for success.

Too much formality is boring and restrictive. Free and open discussion is a major element in your leadership style. Motivating others with your visions and ideas is very satisfying. Talking with others is your way to learn and to teach. Something new and inspiring everyday is the spice of your life. Being of high value to others and seeing high value in others is a prime concern. You have the ability to help people feel hopeful and courageous.

It is important for you to see people and things as they really are.

Your second cornerstone core value is wisdom. Understanding and compassion are central to your life strategy.

Strategic thinking is your forte. You see and understand the relative worth of people and things. Development of effective responses to situations is one of your primary contributions. If different things can be brought together from different resources, you will do it. You strive to cause people and things to function well together. You like to maintain a good mix of people, activities and things in your life. Your willingness to see things through and wait things out is a primary asset.

You like to communicate with visuals and descriptions. People look to you for the creation and improvement of work flow and procedures. You have wit and creativity in your thinking. You can always see another way to put things together. It is important for you to watch, look and listen before you act. Finding the best solution is one of your primary contributions. You like to consider all the options.

Rapid and clever exchange of ideas is a personal joy and a method of work for you. You are able to see the ways things are, and you know what to do about it. You are seen as a valuable resource for leading people toward the right ideas and the right direction. You like to lead through presentation of intelligent alternatives. Acting foolishly or illogically is not a common experience for you. Your use everything that is available to meet requirements. You value and rely upon your mental abilities.

Merchants tend to be exceptional team builders. They motivate people, are constantly excited by new ideas, and never ask if something is possible. They assume every idea is a possibility. In fact, just having an idea is cause for celebration and reward as far as merchants are concerned. They believe that nothing happens without a good idea.

The power of merchants comes from their willingness to think about, consider and expose one good thought after the next. They think as they speak, changing and modifying their vision in real time. Since every business is a constantly changing organism, merchants are invaluable resources.

Their excitement is infectious, and people work better when they feel energized. Unlike builders, merchants get little satisfaction from feeling their own considerable energy. Merchants thrive on infecting the world around them with excitement toward the common vision. They not only create teams, they also inspire, motivate and direct teams toward real (and sometimes imagined) opportunities.

Merchants also have an appreciation for culture, art, literature, quality of presentation, and aesthetics. Without the merchant mind involved in a business, the workplace can become an abyss of chaotic builder dictates on scratch pads, banker spreadsheets and reports, or innovator block diagrams and technical manuals.

Merchants attract others to them, an invaluable asset in business.

Merchants sell. Whether or not they are involved in sales as a business function, merchants sell as much to themselves as to anyone else. Merchants take care of their friends and customers. They nurture long-term relationships. In fact, they tend to value relationships more than results.

An entrepreneur or business leader who is predominately a merchant will generate incredible energy and get almost instant rewards. They can't live without some sort of reward (personal feedback, money, or idea validation) for long. But, the rewards tend to come from many diverse directions and seldom relate to the merchant's own long-term vision. A merchant is perfectly willing to revise his long-term vision as often as required, even more often than necessary.

Merchants get results, but usually indirectly. Merchants are the ones who help others see opportunity. Merchants primarily see opportunities that aren't quite there. Merchants like to start something new as often as possible. They finish projects because they don't want to disappoint someone, not because they themselves value completion and results. Being in the game is what feels good to a merchant.

Business leaders who are predominantly merchants tend to build well-diversified companies. There are very few opportunities that get by them. Without a banker sitting on their shoulder to hold them back, they can be reckless. It also helps merchants to have some builder characteristics and some innovator problem solving and strategizing. Without this balance, they tend to start lots of things, finish very few, and have a great time doing it-though they have little to show for the efforts afterwards.

Merchants act from love, act with energy and thrive on excitement. They hate redundancy, especially in their own patterns of activity. They generally like being watched when they are performing, visioning, teaching, or inspiring, but they dislike being measured, evaluated, tested, or critiqued.

Because merchants value vision and relationships above all else, they see the future when others are stuck in the past or in a present crisis. They know how to sell their vision to others and create tremendous energy by exciting others with their ideas. And, contrary to the opinion of builders, merchants tend to be quite realistic, deriving most of their vision from extrapolating from today's situation.

Their extrapolations are inherently loose and without detail, so bankers also cringe every time the merchant has a new vision. But, innovators love being around a merchant because innovators love a new problem to solve or a new solution to explore. They fill in the required systems and steps a merchant may only dimly see, and then pass on the plan to a builder.

Merchant Challenges

Merchants, however, need to feel their contributions are important and special. They may think too highly of themselves, wanting to believe everyone loves them. If they didn't believe this, they wouldn't get much done. They can be a joy to have around, but they are not driven to complete tasks. They are great starters and weak finishers. But, without a builder around to make things happen, and a banker to keep things from getting out of hand, a strong merchant will constantly be stirring up more fish than anyone can catch and landing very few of them.

Merchants also become easily frustrated and may not take rejection well. Innovators have to constantly help merchants see a new approach because merchants tend to think that "being liked" is all that is required. Merchants experience angst when they perceive they are unappreciated. Almost everything a builder or banker does can make a merchant feel unappreciated.

Merchants tend to succeed quite well at building their team, but where they fall short is in giving their team members the power to control the merchant's whims and need for constant stimulation. In order for merchant leaders to have a strong company or department, they have to give someone else considerable right and authority to keep the boss in chains. They need to fulfill their requirement for constant newness and stimulation outside the work place. "Get a life," as some would say.

If you succeed in managing a merchant, it is through obtaining that person's loyalty and their desire to please you for the sake of maintaining their relationship with you. You may also be able to convince them to be practical by holding out the promise that in the future they will be able to see another of their ideas come into play.

When merchants feel out of control, put upon or undervalued, they have several very effective strategies for getting back into control. They whine, a sound that attracts the attention and sympathy of all other merchants within earshot. They cajole, manipulate, and hang their heads in shame to make you back off.

If all else fails, merchants exaggerate the opportunity or change the subject from present performance to a vision of the future. If you mistreat them (by their standards), they may judge you to be beneath them. They keep on selling, not allowing others to speak. They look innocent, talk innocent, and are drawn to anyone who looks or sounds supportive. They will try to love you to death and win you over because maintaining a relationship is what they hold in the highest value.

If that doesn't work, they may try to shame you regarding the way you are treating them, making you look like the "bad guy" in the eyes of all observers. Unhappy merchants pout until everyone gives in. They tend to make great martyrs. They know the "poor me" dramas of life very well. They are great actors. For example, you can spot the merchants on a basketball team by their success at getting "charging" violations called on their opponents.


Merchant/innovators lead with long-term vision combined with creative solutions for all problems. They build teams and systems. The power of a merchant/innovator derives from his inexhaustible well of creativity. This creates a deep sense of optimism. If the merchant's dream is not being realized, the innovator can kick in and come up with appropriate solutions. When the innovator's solutions do not align perfectly with the merchant's vision, a new vision is deftly formed which encompasses the solutions and systems which the innovator has conceived while still accomplishing all of the basic values foreseen and desired by the merchant/innovator.

This constant creativity makes the merchant/innovator an invaluable resource in companies where technologies are changing rapidly or competition puts new demands on the marketing and sales systems of the company. Merchant/innovators are often chosen as sales representatives. They can sell anything because they build relationships, understand their products and know how to make them fit into a broad range of customer needs.

Merchant/innovators are not put off by any problem of any magnitude. In fact, their sense of personal esteem is often based in the size, oppressiveness and worthiness of the problems they have before them. They look for opportunities to demonstrate their prowess at problem solving or at turning around difficult relationships, which are at risk.

Merchant/innovators like to be needed either for their solutions and technologies or for their humanity, creativity and love. This inescapable urge to be needed drives them to achieve long-term relationships and to develop products and systems, which insure the longevity of the relationships, which are formed.

Merchant/innovators are go-anywhere, do-anything kinds of people. They are even able to function for extended periods of time in remote, if not somewhat isolated situations, as long as the sense of connection and personal worth is maintained for the merchant side of the core energy. For the innovator, the absorption into the problem-solving aspects of any assignment will carry him far, as long as there remains an opportunity to observe others evaluating and appraising his work once it is finished.

Merchant/innovators, despite their ability to sustain themselves independently, thrive best in a team environment. They are excellent team builders and the best teachers. They not only are good at planning a curriculum and basing it in logic and reasonableness, but they pay attention to environment, entertainment, energy levels, and motivation while creating exciting and provocative learning situations.

A merchant/innovator can be an incredible sales person or a powerful entrepreneur if he is balanced with just enough builder characteristics to actually see the job through to the end.

However, merchant/innovators, unrestrained, can be unproductive for themselves and society. They can get lost in the rapture of exploring big picture considerations. The merchant is constantly thinking of new possibilities for projects and new adventures, and the innovator thrives on such challenges.

Innovators hate to bring the process of problem solving to a close. Solving problems is their highest form of pleasure, arguably valuing this game above sex and movies. An innovator/merchant keeps new things coming and everything that was stirred up before "in the works." If you are a merchant/innovator, be certain that you surround yourself with high energy builders who will push you to "get it done," and a few levelheaded bankers who will help ground your ideas by asking "Are you serious?"

Merchant/innovators are constantly caught up in the seduction of new ideas such as improving people systems. However, this concept and the strategy to create it are more important than the implementation itself to the innovator side.

Merchant/innovators may create as much disappointment as they do opportunity. No one wins from working with them for long unless there are significant constraints in place and a strong team of builders and bankers around them to enforce them. If you are a merchant/innovator and you are reading this, you must have just a little builder or banker in you. Make sure you nurture that part of yourself or surround yourself with that type of core energy personality.

As company leaders, merchant/innovators never quit selling or solving the future. They sell themselves and others even when everyone has already agreed. There may be little attention to detail because the next new idea takes 110% of all energy and things are constantly left up in the air. Merchant/innovators tend to be able to keep so much energy swirling around them that they attract others. Builders and bankers enjoy a symbiotic relationship.

Your third level BUILDER core energy gives you the ability to respond appropriately to a broad spectrum of situations.

Your BUILDER values are strong enough to bring balance into your life. Learning to shift your strategy to this core energy in times of high opportunity or during conflicts will contribute significantly to your success. Accomplishing tasks now is a primary drive for you. You are practical and willing to face the truth. You pride yourself in knowing what to do. Whatever you do, you do without much hesitation. You act as soon as you know what to do. People around you know that you are generally on task. You are strongly self-motivated. You value straight talk and frank discussion. Starting new projects and ventures makes you happy. You like to set things in motion. You like to put things and people to work. Knowing the cost and the gain for all actions is important to you. You like to work and you admire others who work. You are not afraid to bring things to an end; when you're done, you're done. There are few situations in which you feel inadequate. You use your power, physical and personal, to get what you want.

Your fourth level BANKER core energy gives you the opportunity to live a balanced and successful life.

You do not rely significantly on BANKER values to create success. A ten percent increase in your focus on your personal values in this quadrant may dramatically increase your performance.

The reliability of your words and actions is critical to your sense of self-respect. When things get messy, you may get testy. You surround yourself with facts, figures and data. Once started, you don't give up easily. You enjoy being the source of information and proven methodology. Knowing the past provides evidence for the future. Creation without effective written plans and process description is senseless.

You like to understand the details of situations and issues. Effective decisions are supported by analysis of similarities and differences. Zero wasted motion, zero wasted resources, zero wasted effort; this is what you strive for. You like to provide others with proven ideas and methodology. Your knowledge is generally available to others.

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