The Kolbe Experiment
Why haven't you peaked yet in your business career?
It’s not the lack of apps, it’s not the lack of techniques, it’s not the lack of courses that’s got you.
It’s willpower, energy management, and acting to your strengths that’s the key. How do we discover our Entrepreneur Operating System (eOS), that allows us to perform at our maximum potential at all times?
Well, this is where the Kolbe Index comes into the picture. Several years ago, I was introduced to the Kolbe Index. I hate personality tests, I really do. I’ve never taken an IQ test because I’m terrified of the results.
The Kolbe Index A test is different because it doesn’t talk to you about your emotional circumstances or how smart you are. It just figures out the way you act and what your strengths are when you act. It’s unique. When I took it, it was perhaps the most comforting test I’d ever taken because it’s like Kathy Kolbe, who created the Index, was looking over my shoulder. You know, sometimes you need people to be able to tell you what you should know, but you’re too close to it. That’s what the Index was like for me.
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Now, she doesn’t know me from a bar of soap but she was able to define, just by me answering 15 minutes of questions, that I enjoyed speaking off the cuff, that I enjoyed working with video, that I was a natural writer and I had started many productivity systems in my life and most of them had never stuck. It was crazy. It was like she was this amazing mind reader! 29 I discovered I was a “squirrel” entrepreneurial type. I was somebody who’s quick to act, didn’t like to be hemmed in with processes, and just needed the basic facts to get started. As I was excited about this Kolbe Index, I wondered, “What if we did a test with 200 Challengers? Let’s just see if everybody is like me, or are they different?” This was really intriguing, so we did the research.
Of all the hundreds of possibilities, a Kolbe Index number is made up of four digits and they indicate how you act in four areas - fact finder, follow through, quick start, and implement. You get a four-digit number. Mine is 4-1-9-4, which means I’m a very high quick start and a very low follow through. As Kathy points out, there are no wrong profiles. There are no bad profiles, it’s just how you are and it’s how you act. When I think about it, it’s how I’ve always acted since I was a kid. What does this mean? When we did The Challenge test, the results were astounding because of the hundreds and hundreds of combinations it turns out there were four, three major ones and one very rare one, that made up our testing base, of Challengers. This was an extraordinary result.
What was fascinating was the different types had completely different approaches. If they tried to follow the approach of the other, use their operating system, if you will, of the other type of entrepreneur, it would cause them all sorts of misery. This was the discovery. What are the entrepreneurial types? Well the first one, which is my one and, by the way, about 65% of you reading this, is called squirrel group. As I’ve mentioned, this is the type person who is quick and excited to try things, perhaps easily distracted by baubles and objects, which is why I call it squirrel, and always looking for shortcuts. You’re looking for ways to buck the system. If you must turn up and do the same thing every single day you become miserable. You’ve tried a lot of productivity systems in the past and nothing’s ever stuck. You love starting them, you get very excited starting them, but nothing sticks. You’re quite happy to try experiments and you’re always excited, but maybe you don’t track the results. Maybe you don’t realize what the value, but if you try to follow a set of processes set out by someone else, you’re going to struggle unless you know how to manage your nature and know how to use your operating system
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Thirty percent of you are what we call “research addicts”. This is my colorful term for you. Now, you’re the opposite to me, but I love you guys and you are just as good entrepreneurs. It’s important to emphasize, wherever you fit, you’re going to be a great entrepreneur. This is not a 31 judgement; it’s just how you act. Once you start acting the way you should, you’re going to be way more comfortable and effective!
The research addict is somebody who loves fact finding. They love researching, they love doing the courses, they love studying and really enjoy the process of understanding a market and understanding the needs of a market. They’re great, but unfortunately, they also have a relatively low follow through. That means that sticking with processes, they’re much better at, but they’re far more likely to be comfortable writing. They much prefer to be behind the scenes, behind the camera, than in front of the it. They’d rather not talk off the cuff. They’d rather plan what they should say. Again, completely opposite from me, but there are lots of huge advantages to that too. The research addict makes about 30% of entrepreneurs. Another 5% is what I call the “process king”. These are, in Kolbe terms, high fact finders and high follow-throughs. These are the people who are actually really good at understanding productivity systems and probably have spent the last little while, if you’re still with me, going, “What are you talking about? I’m good at managing my to-do list. I love managing people. I’m really good at that.
”You are good at that, it’s awesome. That is fantastic and I envy you immensely. The challenge for the high fact finders and high follow-throughs is getting you to start something new! You struggle with pushing the go button on a campaign or conducting an experiment or a new funnel or doing a new advertising campaign. When you have to go off script, when you don’t know what the result of the process is, it can be a real freeze moment for you. That’s okay too because there are ways of working around this. The fourth type, which is, as I say, super rare, is people who are in the category of “inventors”. You have a high implementer score. For everyone else – we are not so good with our hands, not people who would be building and constructing a bunch of stuff. There is a small percentage who are good at this and when I ask they are inevitably inventor types. Again, fantastic. Of course, with invention and inventor types, they love making the things but then selling and marketing and doing all the testing is the antithesis of what they’re all about. Fortunately for you, that’s okay; we can work with you as well.
Here’s the key point of all of this. If you play to your strengths, you’ll have more energy, more willpower, and you’ll have more fun implementing what you need to implement to build your business.
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