Golds Need Advice and Feedback

April 7th, 2014

Here are a few questions from Golds at seminars or by email. But rather than me answering them, since I’m a fellow Gold member, how about YOU click the comment button and tell them. Your name and email will never show, and it’s OK to be supportive, sympathetic, funny, or sarcastic:

-I have cord phobia. I can’t stand cable lines, extension cords, etc. that aren’t properly tucked away and out of sight. Am I the only person with this phobia?

-My kitchen counter pretty much needs to be empty, other than the coffee maker and toaster. Even the microwave is out of sight and I love the neat look when there’s nothing cluttering up the kitchen. Is that weird?

-I’ve spent – no – invested in a bunch of shoe organizers…and there are a fair number of shoes…please tell me I’m not the only Gold female!

-I get kind of cranky when others at work use my desk or borrow my stuff. Is it wrong that I’m pretty territorial?

-Is it OK for me to organize the kitchen junk drawer every few months, or is that going one step too far in the direction of OCD?

Your Blue Is Showing

April 7th, 2014

Quite often I hear someone say that another person “must have a lot of Blue in them.” While we all know what that means, we all do have a lot of Blue within each of us, no matter what our primary Color! We are all Blue – and Green and Orange and Gold… in one order or another.

Just like the words freedom, fun, family, or honesty have very different definitions for each Color, our Blue comes out in very different ways, and at different times, whether it’s your first Color or your last! But when you have an understanding of Colors, you need to look for the very different ways it manifests itself.

For Golds, their “Blue” frequently shows in doing nice things for others, since they value being helpful and cooperative. But it’s also doing many things that other Colors might not notice. Golds do something because it is the right thing to do – and because it needs doing. It’s not about drawing attention to it, but just to help out. And it will often be in the form of actions, instead of words.

High Greens show you they care by giving you advice, or perhaps better ways something should be done, another way you could do something, or maybe sharing a book, magazine, or web story that will really help you to grow or learn. They care enough to want you to learn and to do better!
Most high Orange will show their caring through verbal feedback, positive affirmations, inviting you along, or maybe by using their great sense of humor to get you back on track, looking at the positive side, or pulling you out of your current state.

As the old saying goes: Different strokes for different folks. Look through the long list of each Color’s strengths in the Colorful Personalities book, and you will see how each of us uses our strengths in “Blue” ways. But it will always be up to you to pay attention, and to look for the value (look for the Blue) in all Colors. It is always present in a wide variety of subtle ways, if we just choose to look and to listen.

Where Are All The Applicants?

April 7th, 2014

According to a Wall Street Journal Small Business podcast, large numbers of employers are frustrated that they can’t get enough applicants to their job postings. Dah! No wonder. Have a look at the majority of typical job postings! They’ll usually include an extensive list of requirements.

Studies show that women are much less likely to apply if they can’t meet every requirement listed on the posting. Plus, Golds, who are more than a third of the population, also won’t apply if they can’t check off every qualification that’s listed. They also won’t apply if they don’t believe that they have a reasonable chance of being accepted. If not, they’d rather avoid the time-waster of applying, and their even bigger stress of feeling like a failure after getting their hopes up and then rejected (something they avoid at all cost).

But, ironically, it’s often Golds who write those long lists of requirements. Since they’d want the details – all the details – surely the job postings should include them all…Unfortunately, that’s not true, and will drastically shrinks the number of potential applicants. Whether it’s job postings, selling, or explaining something – don’t get the default Gold mindset that all the information and all those details need to be front-loaded!

Are We Protecting Or Hurting?

January 26th, 2014

In the past year I’ve run across three media reports and some pretty strong editorial opinions on stories involving kids:

• A number of school districts have decided to no longer fail kids, but rather call a non-passing grade “deferred success.”
• In parts of Britain, kindergarten teachers have been instructed to avoid the word “no” at all times.
• One major soccer association in Ontario (for kids under age 11) no longer keeps score for any games. Their logic is that the game is about skills, fair play, sportsmanship, and teamwork, and not making winners or losers.

But Swerve magazine asked: By overprotecting our children, are we putting them at even greater risk? There are no easy answers, but the author even questioned herself whether she was raising kids that were fat, passive, entitled, over-protected, helpless, lazy, wimps, and unable to function in the real world.

In the interest of full disclosure, sadly, I don’t have kids – and I sure don’t have any answers here, just questions. But your first Color will likely have some strong opinions:

Is it really possible to build empathy and help when everyone is equal? Is not keeping score, or failing a test, a way to motivate and improve, or point to a reason to work harder and do better? Can the results of these policies not potentially create a false sense of reality that’ll be shattered really quickly out in the real world? Is it more about sheltering kids from reality or helping them to grow?

When these kids become adults don’t achievements equal rewards and success, promotions, and a raise? Are these types of policies helping kids in a loving way and teaching them, or simply avoiding the harsh realities of life as an adult?

High Oranges thrive, learn, and grow through competition, games, and winning. They value anything where they have a chance to be the star, to perform, and to become the (recognized) best. They have no problem losing, because it makes them work harder and become more skilled with a single-minded focus to do better (win) next time.

For Gold kids and adults, it’s valuable when they can quantify things. Just participating without concrete measurements and yardsticks doesn’t allow for that and makes it very difficult to feel successful.

High Greens deal in facts and logic – as kids just as much as adults. They played poorly or didn’t study hard enough? That’s fine – now they have measurable and factual feedback to do better next time, and to learn from it.

Blue Mom – Green Son – Big Conflict

January 26th, 2014

After a recent seminar, a Blue mom had a lot of questions about her 25-year old Green son. He was still living at home and had recently been laid off from his job. It was easy to see the concern on her face, probably made worse now that she understood both of their Colors.

Leaving aside her inability to distinguish between helping and enabling, she wanted some tools to be able to communicate better, and to help her son in this difficult time. In our five minute conversation I pointed out that she had already asked me seven different ways how to ‘reach’ her Green son. She either wasn’t hearing me, or didn’t want to hear me, or take the feedback about her Green son. More likely, she just couldn’t understand how Greens deal with grief and hurt. That makes sense since it’s so very different from Blues.

Whether it’s in your family, at work, or with friends, generally, the best way to be there for a Green is to not be there. The more you push for them to talk, the further they’ll withdraw. That applies to six-year old Green kids in wanting them to cuddle on the sofa, as much as someone at work.

Sadly, I’m quite sure she’ll make it worse over the next little while. Her questions all revolved around how to make her Green son more Blue, talkative, wanting to be with her at this hard time in his life, and to open up and share. It ain’t going to happen – sorry. This mom may not, but what do lots of Blues do after the asking and pushing hasn’t worked? You have to talk to me, because I’m Blue. No – sorry – playing your “Blue card” is below the belt and isn’t an alternate way to reach a Green person.

Greens will talk about their feelings, hurts, challenges, and troubles. But it has to be with someone who also functions through logic, has credibility, and can be trusted not to get emotional. Yes, that can be a Blue…but it’s not likely…

A Subconscious Gold Challenge

January 26th, 2014

For every Color, it pays to be prepared for…whatever. For Golds, however, it’s essentially mandatory and part of their DNA. As a result, when Golds mess up or forget something, it’s not likely to ever happen a second time.

If that decision happens to be about making mistakes, maybe that’s a good thing. Mess up, learn the lesson, and don’t repeat the same error twice. At that point, it’s a matter of always checking and double checking…and lots of pre-emptive worrying.

However, Golds can also make some lifetime decisions based on one incident that becomes self defeating for decades to come. In those cases, Golds should try again…and again…

Steve got thrown under the bus by a former boss over something that went pretty bad, but not due to Steve’s work. That was the day Steve decided to never really trust a manager again…He’s changed companies now, but his black or white mindset follows that decision to this day.

Cory has always helped other parents drive their kids from here to there without question. The one time she actually asked another parent to drive her daughter home after band practice, that parent couldn’t do it. It was hard enough to ask for help (as any Gold will tell you,) but since that day five years ago, she hasn’t asked again.

If your first Color is Gold, be honest: What’s something (maybe very subconscious) that left such a strong impression or scar tissue that you resolved to never do, ask, offer, trust, or say again, or always do, because of one instance in your past? It’s important to think of it, and to re-visit it! After all, you can’t change what you don’t know or acknowledge.