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cheri anderson

BBT Ep. 24: Working Genius with Cheri Anderson

December 25, 202332 min read

In this episode we're joined once again by Emotional Intelligence coach Cheri Anderson from Good Life Productions. We cover topics related to EQ such as the Working Genius, DISC Profiles and more!

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  Welcome to the better billing today podcast on episode 24. I'm bringing back Cheri Anderson, our in house expert in residence on emotional intelligence, teamwork, communication, and all the tools that will help your team work better together. Join us on this episode as we dive into the working genius, The 6 Types of Working Genius by Patrick Lencioni.

Also, we're going to go into the DISC profile and how we were able to use those. tools for our business and transform the way our team worked. So I hope you get something really beneficial out of this episode.

Welcome back to the show, Cheri, it's great to have you! Last time we talked we went through a few different frameworks. We went through The 6 Types of Working Genius and the DISC profile. And we had talked about how to use those together. And now that I've actually been in your cohort, of EQ Mastery for about four to five weeks now. A lot, there was a lot to learn in that four to five weeks and we're only halfway through. Catch our audience up and tell us what has been happening since we started.

Okay, so we started with the context of emotional intelligence. Differentiating emotional intelligence from your intelligence quotient, your IQ. And the premise is that you're not stuck with your EQ. It will grow as long as you're alive, and you choose to watch it grow.

We offered an to 10-0 week emotional intelligence workshop. So we meet virtually, and it's about an hour and a half, and we literally are taking our time. To allow people in the cohort to get to know what is their working genius? So just to give a little background summary of that, there are 6 types of geniuses.

We have 2 geniuses, 2 working competencies, and 2 working frustrations, and those include wonder Invention. Maybe I should quiz you on this.

Yes, I do know them actually. It's wonder, invention, discernment, enablement, galvanizing, and tenacity.

Correct. Yes. And you've learned what yours are, what categories they fall into.

Definitely have. I score very high in invention and discernment which makes my job very easy if I lean into those. In our industry, there are always things popping up that need a problem solved, and the discernment to know when do we roll this out, how do we roll it out and who else needs to be informed and having that awareness has helped us a lot, I think overcome some of the things that have faced us in our industry.

So it's funny that's the role that I typically find myself in. But I'll let you keep going because I also know my very high frustrations.

Okay. So with those 6 types of working genius, you identify your 2 and then it starts to paint a picture. How much time do I actually spend in my day to day projects, responsibilities in my genius versus a competency versus a frustration.

Then if you're thinking about this just at work. So we also talked about a highlight just to summarize There is a difference between the value of DISC understanding your personality style versus understanding your working genius, and we can talk about that a little bit further into the conversation when we think about our working genius and how does it impact work, it's literally how we approach getting work done. And this is not limited to your day job, right? It could be with your spouse. It could be how you work with your children. If you have a project, if you're going on vacation, right? So your working genius applies across the board throughout your lifestyle, but it really starts to give you that special lens to see why and how I do what I do and where it brings me joy, right?

Like the whole point of some of this is to like, improve your quality of life to make life easier for yourself and for others to improve your team, improve your leadership, but like literally know with great accuracy and efficiency, where to tweak the dials.

I have read, probably 150 books in the last five years. Eddie and I so we read a ton of books. This one book, this one framework has probably saved me so much frustration in the future, has made sense of the frustration of the past. And has given me a really great viewpoint on how I need to structure my team. If I was, in a relationship, I could see the dynamics there.

I can see it with my daughter and I can see it in all of the home projects that I've started, the ones that I've been able to finish and the ones I really had to drudge through and the ones that are not finished. And this one book I was just surprised at how applicable the framework is in all areas of my life, and it wasn't just me.

I'm not special everybody in the cohort says the same thing Savannah our executive assistant who really runs our team and helps me stay sane she is able to pick up so quickly who on our team kind of fits in these geniuses just by talking with them. And she's able to give me recommendations like, Hey, so and so might be better suited for this role or this task. And I think again, it has saved us as a team so much time and energy and frustration. Personally, it has kept me from starting projects because I can see. downstream where my weaknesses are going to be. And it doesn't mean I'm not going to do them, but it means I will do a better job at planning who's going to help me finish this project and that's personal and work.

So that's a great opportunity to explain maybe where you see out of your 6, which 2 are your competencies and now your frustrations. And you could just jump to the frustrations because it seems a little juicy when you talk about it.

Yeah, so my frustrations are definitely enablement and tenacity.

So how would you put that in the context for people who are hearing what we're talking about?

So the first thing I did when I got the book was I sent you a text and I said, this explains why I can build a garden and not tend it. I have a beautiful vegetable garden in my backyard and I have a beautiful landscaping, but it doesn't get tended because I like to create and I don't necessarily like to maybe do the routine things over and over again. But what's also obvious to me is that sometimes I have a hard time getting that last 5 percent of a single project done. So it doesn't even have to be routine.

There was an artist who had this pattern of how he worked, like he knew how he worked. But, there's also the context of a project where I'm really good at kicking off a project, knowing where it needs to go, how it's going to make a big difference in our company, but then it needs all of the editing, the fine-tuning we gotta scrub it for errors in syntax and then clean it up and then publish it. But publishing our policies and our internal procedures, we probably have 80 percent of our policies and procedures just slightly not done. They're so good because I'm good at that first initial kickoff and that creation, but I haven't empowered my team to really dive in and clean it up.

I didn't know that there were people who love to do that. And that was the eye opener was that not everybody's like me. There's people that want to take things that are unfinished and they love driving those things home to a finish line, which is tenacity. You know the galvanizing hasn't a component of that too It's getting the execution or getting the project moving forward even through some motivation or some coaching some management But then there's the actual individual who sometimes wants to get their hands on that final detail and see it done.

And when you can see where your team members fit into these categories, you are not boxing them in. You're liberating them. And that was so exciting because I was able to talk to my team in a new way with new context and really see what excites them and what their geniuses are and start to move the pieces.

And we've already made three or four different moves in our organization. I have a fantastic manager who is high E, high T, but if I had told her, I want you to go create this division in our company, here's the opportunity she might not be high on the invention and discernment.

But she's got great ET or GT and we just moved her in there last week and things are already just like lining up. I'm like, where has this been all my life? I Incorrectly had her on a more creative, pursuit But she is definitely that galvanizing, tenacious person.

Which is really exciting. How would you from that, CEO leadership position that you're in help connect the dots?

So let's say you do realize, Oh, I need a galvanizing and tenacity genius to do this. What if they don't have the skill set?

So they have that they have that genius but not a skill set,right?

This particular in this example, did she have both the skill set and the geniuses that you needed?

She did Yeah, you know with the experience she had I realized that just wasn't utilizing her and her genius and you know She's gonna eventually find be uninterested in the job and you we look at performance, but it's like in what context, are we looking at performance in the context of placement and best seat for the right person? and I think it's Jim Collins or right person right seats and then somebody expounded on that said doing the right things, right? It's right seat but having the tools to do the job correctly and so there's the skill side of it too.

How does she feel? Does she know that it's the difference? And did you actually spell this out to her and with her or did you

So she has not read the book yet. And so I just had a conversation with her, but I had a more educated conversation. I had the higher EQ awareness and I was asking her what do you like about what you're doing and what are you looking for? I'd love to help over there in that department because they seem to be a little unorganized And we've made swift progress in just a week of putting that person over there.

That's rad. That's really the whole benefit of doing that.

If I could talk to business owners, managers, CEOs I would say that If there was ever a tool to get the right people in the right seats, this is the one. This may not get them doing the right things right side. That's skills. But if it's right person, right seats, this is probably the number one tool that I will always use when I'm evaluating whether someone's gonna love this position and they're gonna thrive at it. Again, give them the supporting procedures and the skills, but do you have them engaged in their genius? This is the tool for that.

With what you're practicing, now learning the tool, you've read the book, I know you listen to the podcast that Patrick Lencioni has, and if you had gone as far as discovering the assessment and the book, and maybe the podcast, and not gone through the EQ workshop, what would you say is different?

Has the workshop added to the insight that you're getting? Or is what you could have done by yourself enough?

The role playing that we're doing in the cohort and the workshops give me a much more rounded view. I'll say it, it gives me a lot more insight. It's just, you get a lot from the book, you take the assessment, you have some light bulbs that go off. Great. And I'll tell you from an ID perspective, that's usually where I stop. And so showing up to this cohort week after week takes a little bit of tenacity. And I don't have that always. So it's been funny like seeing myself push through these 10, lessons.

But I am getting much more out of this by applying because you have theory and then you have practice. The book, the worksheets the test, great theory. The cohort seems to be designed to make sure that the person can apply it. And that's where I think we're getting the most use out of it because we're actually applying it in the company and my team that, that is in the cohort with us, they're using it too.

Yeah, just obviously the one facilitating the cohort. However, I'm also practicing this in real-time with my business, my team, and then facilitating this as a consultant and coach with all the teams in real-time learning it my depth of understanding in my capacity to really grow to digest it make it part of my DNA like it's not a It's not a skill or a tool that you pick up like from a textbook.

It's literally life changing and it's exponentially valuable within the cohort because we are doing like the role playing activities. We are having, there's some homework, but it's really opportunity to prepare for the cohort and we are taking our time to look at the whole picture of the model, not just, okay, I know what letters I am, okay, I know I need a different person to do this job it's a lot more robust, and there's so much more texture to it, and we get to really roll our sleeves up and it's, I think it's fun.

Working with people that I don't know and actually I met Brandon on the workshop and he and I have very similar geniuses and it's funny because when we talk about something he and I are both responding the same way and then we flip the roles around and I said you know, if I was a tenacious person, I would just pick up the phone and call and then our ET over there on the left, Josh, that's exactly what I was thinking.

It's definitely fun engaging with the other team members. And the, what did you have? Not the homework, but our applications when we've had to apply what we've learned to planning a party, planning a project, I just came up with this idea while I was sitting here with you, which is you should give us a list of 12 people and we should build an org board or an org structure and org chart for a company based on the geniuses.

Give us an industry and then change the industry and then see if that changes the position of the people, and that way we can really get our hands dirty, like applying these things. You can give us a DISC profile, a widget profile, and we could start to see what kind of org chart you came up with and see why it'd be a great capstone for the group to end off of.

But yeah, we might do that.

If not this round, maybe in the future.

This is all really good feedback. Obviously you're applying it. Do you have any other examples? So you've been thinking about how to reassign the people on your team Having higher intel emotional intelligence to be able to facilitate those types of conversations. Because now you're priming people basically for at bats and wins versus criticism or that frustration. Do you have other examples where you are seeing this impact how you approach getting work done or just even your own? I'm asking a couple questions at the same time, but your own mindset in understanding yourself because you don't have those pieces.

I think what I've noticed in my application is that I have a lot more peace. It sounds weird, but it's thankfully I'm not confused. As a business owner, as a leader, as a coach, as an entrepreneur, you're always trying to create opportunity. And in our world, sometimes it's by trial and error. And tinkering is the way to do it sometimes. But that trial and error takes time. Recently I've been able to see things come, into our space at our office as opportunities or problems to solve and my decision-making is faster.

My confidence in my decision-making is faster because I think in the past I would say, I'll take that on. Now I'm thinking, wait a second. How can I look at this through the form of a widget because working genius, because a problem could be short and sweet and just needs a creative solution? I'm the guy for that one. And if somebody said, I need to babysit this process for six weeks to see how it goes, we have to monitor, if it's working I am not the person for that one.

We have been able to just make decisions faster. And even, as a creative person, I can come up with a new product or service very quickly. And now I can see maybe through wisdom or just skill sets that I'm applying, but I can figure out when to start that project if we should start it at all. And so sometimes just knowing what not to do is just as good as knowing what to do.

And without the context in these tools, sometimes you are still tinkering. You don't want to just wait for experience to catch up with you. If you can latch onto these tools and make the most of them, you can save a lot of time and frustration.

To add to that, which is super well said, thank you. I agree 100%. You've invited your executive assistant to be in the cohort with you. So I was really thankful that you did this because I feel like you would have been at a disadvantage to the value without having her participate. So can you share some of the ways having her go through the same education learning curve that you are have has helped you?

When we read each other's profiles. We both lit up like wow, this makes so much sense She is not the kind of person who's going to start a new company or start a new product or any of the things that I've done, but we were curious like why do we love working together? Why do we work so well together? You don't like to do any of the things I like to do and I don't want to do any of the things you're doing but the way we work together as individuals like just makes sense so we both overlap on some of the things we're competent at but we are completely opposite on our geniuses and we cover the gaps, but now we can have productive conversations. She'll say, Adam, we've got these things coming up that are due I've done what I know how to do, and you've done what you know how to do, we have to both fill in the gap.

And again, just making more productive conversations. I feel like we've saved time, and we've saved the emotion out of it. I don't have to wonder why I'm frustrated. She doesn't wonder why she's frustrated. And we can actually talk with dialogue. I think the biggest impact is that we have new language. Is that we're speaking a new language. And when you have when you can define terms that you both understand, things just move so much faster without any sort of emotion.

I think it builds trust, builds vulnerability, and intimacy, right? You want to be talking about quality of life, these are relationships we spend what percentage of our day?

I'm probably working with her, 40 hours a week. I'll sleep 40 hours a week. And so then, a third of my life I'll spend with these people.

And so now There's not, you're, whether it's you or her or maybe anybody else, you're not going home with that weight on your mind.

Like you said earlier, have more peace, not just about how you're making your own decisions, but how you're trusting each other. I remember Savannah saying she felt I don't know the best adjective, but maybe confused or frustrated because you would always, want to double check or question?

Yeah she said that she didn't think it was a good use of my time that I would check up on things that were done by other people. And I said, it is a discernment side of it, but it's also some quality control. We don't have strong systems that for every process that we have, we don't have sure fireways for quality control, but I do have pretty good judgment on, okay, this is going to fail over here because we forgot to do this step. So I love checking things out. She thought it was, she was wasting my time. I was like, no, not at all. This is, I love doing this because. I'm going to find something.

And that was a huge weight lifted off of her shoulders. Like how often she felt.

She didn't know I liked it. She thought it was a task that I was dredging and that was not the case at all.

And it didn't feel empowering to her either because she was like, this, you gave this to me and now you want it back. So don't you trust me?

There's that aspect of I worked on something, don't you trust me that I can do it? Yes, I absolutely can. That's why I gave it to you. But in the context of like our. business and our brand and our quality. I just want to see if there's a coaching point that I can bring up and Hey, we didn't do this.

And a lot of times it's me. I, if I invent something and she's tying it off at the end, did I forget something? And so it's in the, when you look at the whole thing, that's where my discernment is. I'm trying to leverage that discernment is it's not that you didn't do a great job here.

But now you guys both know how to talk about it so it's there's no murkiness.

Absolutely, and from my experience, on any framework that you use, as long as you use it as a team, it's like a coding language. It's like a computer talking to another computer. There is no lost in translation, A equals A, B equals B. But when you don't have a common language on a team, you can say, wow, this is a frustration. And someone can think. Oh, that's a bad thing now. We see it in the context of working frustrations. It's not that I'm mad at you it's that wow, this is really not my strength and I'll get through it, but I'm doing it consciously instead of doing it unconsciously and thinking that I'm gonna hate my job.

Building up resentment.

So it just it softens the blow When we have to do things we don't want to do because we're always gonna have to face those times They're never gonna go away. But how do we approach them now? We have a new viewpoint. We have a new lens in which we can view that problem.

With the understanding of your team in the idea of having a common language. Do you think you could stop with just the two of you having this type of information? Or do you think and that would benefit the whole company or do you think that you would want to invite the rest of your team and as your company grows to have this as part of everyone's common language.

I mean everybody on my team will need to go through this workshop and I've called a few other clients I told them that hey, this is one of the best decisions I've ever made.

And it was simple we meet once a week, we read this book, we take this, test and now light bulbs are going off and we can apply this and for us as a service business, we're always up against deadlines and it can be difficult sometimes to justify, let's stop the production line and let's go into our EQ workshop. But if you can see that an hour invested in gets us two hours out it's worth it every time.

One of the things that was most insightful and life-changing for me when I took the DISC assessment if you don't mind if we talk about that for a couple of minutes. Yeah, let's, absolutely. We like a group of us, we weren't all working for the same company, but we were, in business, in the community together, we all went through the training to know what our DISC profile assessments were.

And it literally was a game changer because everyone now had a common language. And I used to, this is just a little personal thought, but I used to want to aspire as an American, you don't get exposure to a ton of languages, from around the world. You just don't pick up six languages from neighboring countries, on a day-to-day basis. But I was like, Oh, it would be great to have a goal to be able to speak seven languages. So that's just my imagination wanted that for me. I have not learned any other foreign language fluently, but I feel like I can probably speak fluently in five or six different types of languages in this context.

DISC was probably one of the first languages that I learned and it literally shifted all communication, all emotion, all understanding of both myself and other people. It gave other people permission to see me and then approach me where they saw me shine or saw me struggle. Yeah. It's, that's like a, it's a part of culture, right?

So when we talk about EQ and how it impacts culture, it's through this common language. And then the relationship ripple effect is obviously amazing. There have been obviously places where people learn this type of material and don't really understand the ethics behind it or don't really understand how their concern is they feel pigeonholed, that's even come up in our cohort. Like I'm trying not to label people. But it's actually a way to let people fully be themselves. Yeah. And be seen without fear of judgment. Yeah. So with DISC, it was the first time I saw that having that type of opportunity for sharing a language could build relationships in a way that I only would have dreamt were possible.

Yeah, and I would just say, to, to piggyback off what you said about common language and giving people a chance to be themselves. If I walked up to Eddie and I talked to him like a CS, he would just slap me and say, what do you want? I don't need all the details.

Tell me what you need, A to B, just short and sweet. And so if I modify my language to the person and the way that I think they receive communication. That's the gift and it's not like I'm limiting his ability to receive communication in any form But I'm just giving him the kind of communication he wants and I can see that when you put these two together, when you put the person in the right seat doing the right thing and then you can speak to them in a way that they love to be spoken to either carefully or softly or directly or fast then they just feel like they're heard and seen and valued and then they love to just run with whatever problem you've given them.

We, so we did not talk about this last time and we are actually gonna be talking about this Wednesday. We're gonna tap into it. So you have a little teaser. I mentioned the word ethics a little bit earlier. So part of what You learn through personality emotional intelligence training, hopefully, not everyone learns this, but it's something that we teach as part of our company.

One of our values is to teach virtue ethics. Once you now have the knowledge of this information, you can use it for good or bad, right? It's like the story of human nature what it empowers you to do is to make decisions on how you can now adapt to other people ethically. The reason why this tool is not a weapon is because now you are the one who has the onus, you are the one to take responsibility.

Oh, this person really appreciates it when I get to the point and I don't use too much detail, they seem to respond really well if I can pick up my pace or vice versa I can slow my pace down Yeah, now the onus is on you because you have a higher degree of emotional intelligence and that is a virtue.

And then ethically you want to honor that person honor that knowledge and then build that type of common connection., that is your foundation.

I would even say for anybody in a leadership role It is unethical for them to not try to learn about how other people communicate and how other people have their geniuses.

If you don't care enough about your staff or your family or your friends to know how they really thrive and the environments they thrive in ways that don't compromise your own values, you're not. Sacrificing your own integrity to allow others to succeed. That's not what this is. This is a win solution.

And if you don't invest in your ability to communicate better to others, I think that's unethical. So that's just my personal thing. I'm going to raise the bar a little bit. But it sounds like what you're saying is when you learn these tools, it's with great knowledge comes great responsibility. To wield these tools with responsibility and ethics is to use them You know, push the next person up higher and respect them and appreciate them.

Yes, and to just go back to what you commented on raising the bar. I think sometimes people feel hesitant because they don't want the mushy gushy, right? What? I don't want the mushy gushy either.

I called you out on that stuff. I was like, nah, this is not for me. This is self-regulation. I don't know what you're talking about, but then I realized oh, you know Maybe not starting another garden that I can't tend is self-regulation. . I call it responsibility. But some people call it self-regulation and sometimes self-regulation comes in the context of managing emotions. But if I look at it, maybe planting a garden without a good follow-up plan is an emotional decision. I want something in my backyard blooming with vegetables and plants. If I don't manage that emotion with. following up with seeing the requirements downstream and how am I going to, where am I going to get these materials. Who's going to help me tend to this? What am I going to do with it once I grow it, is it all going to die? So without proper responsibility of that whole project that's an emotional decision.

And to think about with your team another maybe type of resistance is I don't want to be somebody's psychologist or somebody's babysitter, right? And this doesn't require you to go in that direction at all.

No, nobody's that learned these tools on our team has ever used this as a reason to do less, be less, or give me problems and expect me to fix them.

Again, when we. educate people with the tools and the resources and the language and the definitions of what these things are that are happening at work like we can solve them. And if you don't choose to solve them, that's your choice. But so far our application of these two tools and we haven't gotten deep into the DISC yet, but we've been Eddie and I have been using it for a while. They seem to make things happen faster. easier and a lot more fun. So for hopefully anybody watching our show is getting the idea that tools You know, are definitely something they need to invest in. And sometimes we get so many options online. We don't know what to invest in. We get all of these different resources being emailed to us or friends passing us a book.

I'm definitely glad that we took our team members through it. I'm going to take the rest of my team through it and I'm going to continue to Advocate for this group because just the book and the worksheets and then the cohort together when you match it all together It really is a complete picture.

So I really appreciate you, you know asking me to join the group and participate in the weekly workshops.

Yeah, of course. I'm really glad that you are here and with your Assistant

As we close out this episode. I have one more question for you. Okay What made you choose Working Genius and DISC together and can you use them separately?

Yes, and that is what I was going to actually naturally talk about. Okay, so Good Life Productions is the company and team that I'm a part of and one of the aspects of our mission is to provide the best of the best. So there's more to us than me behind the scenes. And over the last 30 years, we have been exhausting to the best of our ability, what's available as far as resources and tools.

And we've narrowed down the things that we think will help entrepreneurs and leaders really advance in their areas of interest and where their pain points are. One personally gone through all of this content ourselves. So we know that we have the experience We know the fruit and the value and the benefit We also know some of the blind spots that these assessments and tools carry and this is where we start Packaging them together because they marry well where one maybe doesn't have the whole picture Which I don't think any particular assessment should aim to have everything maybe the Navy SEALs or somebody up in the upper echelon it has that type of content, but You can take these assessments separately, and they could provide very different types of value.

We found that putting them together for businesses with teams is, you're gonna get an exponential bang for your buck in your capacity to put things together and find the holes, you'll naturally have a curiosity whether or not you articulate it. I understand that maybe as a DISC personality, right?

Like a high C, like I understand that I really love quality. I love going through the details. I love taking my time to make sure everything is correct and accurate. But that doesn't explain why I am really good with invention, right? And now your Working Genius comes into the picture. But if you want to hire somebody, maybe an administration or an engineer, right? Knowing just someone's work DISC profile starts to eliminate. These people thrive in this way. These people are more task-oriented. These people are more people-oriented. And then you start to be able to piece together those different dynamics.

And just, the experience you have, it sounds like you have picked these two because they do, as you said, they complete most of the picture and then either experience or other tools we can use along the way. But personally, I like the combination of the way you've married these two together.

We are taking them, sorry, one, we are, and we are taking them one at a time in the workshop, right? We're not, yeah, we can do a third phase where we are teaching the application of both simultaneously, but just setting a foundation, like what is Working Genius and how do I connect to it personally and then in my company? What is DISC and same thing, right? So we're taking them one at a time in really allowing everybody to workshop the content and not just hope to remember my letters

Exactly, no, it's the workshops are all about application and that's what I've enjoyed out of them That is all we have for the show Cheri.

Thank you so much for being on this show This is a great follow-up if you haven't seen our First episode click the link below and you'll find the precursor to this one. And this is Cheri Anderson with Good Life Productions. So I'm sure we'll have you on for another round of these emotional intelligence conversations.

And thank you.

Yeah. Thank you, Adam. This was really fun and a pleasure as always. Yes, absolutely.

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