The Four Tendencies

I have always been one to enjoy personality inventories of all kinds. While I do not get excited about the short, superficial, unscientific ones on social media, I have even taken some of those when I am bored. Most of the time however, I am speaking of the inventories designed by authors, researchers, psychologists and others with the training and expertise to do so. There are some, like the Myers-Briggs that have been around forever, while others continue to emerge. No test or inventory is perfect nor can one instrument define you.

That said, these instruments or inventories can be very helpful. They can inform and enlighten. They can strengthen your leadership and the leadership of those around you. One of the key assets to leadership is self-knowledge. The various personality inventories whether they look at personality, motivation, gifts, strengths, learning styles or something else can be a tremendous asset. These tools are something to visit regularly as at times we change a bit based on personal growth, environment and needs. These instruments or inventories can help enhance our self-knowledge tremendously and give us a picture of how we function as well as how others see and interact with us. Personality inventories can reveal blind spots and can be helpful tools in leveraging our strengths and managing our weaknesses.

Recently, I was introduced to a new inventory, the Four Tendencies. It was developed by Gretchen Rubin as a part of her research and a book with the same name was written by her. I found her book, website and inventory to be very fascinating. At the core, the four tendencies address your motivation, what motivates you to work and achieve. Using a four quadrant approach it looks at whether or not we are motivated by internal expectations, external expectations, neither or both. Knowing what motivates us can be a huge asset as a leader and can enhance self-knowledge. It can also help us as we work with colleagues, spouses and others, helping them to achieve their goals, desires and obligations in a way that is healthy.

I encourage you to visit and take the inventory and learn more about your tendencies! It is a solid, helpful and meaningful tool for all leaders.

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