Understanding Your Natural Instincts

Everyone has a different way of solving problems and getting things done. The more you understand people’s natural tendencies, the more effectively you can work, hire, innovate and grow.

Key Takeaways

  • We all have specific things that we really like to do, and a natural way of doing them.
  • IQ tests tell you what you can do. Personality tests tell you what you want to do. Kolbe profiles tell you what you really will (or won’t) do.
  • Experts say there are three distinct parts to the mind: Cognitive, Affective and Conative.

As you’re contemplating the year ahead this Holiday season, consider a Kolbe profile. It’s an assessment tool that we use to understand how each of us solves problems and how we naturally go about doing things if left to our own devices.

Your mind has three parts

Cognitive can be measured by IQ tests. Affective, which describes personality and emotions, can be measured by personality profiles like the Myers-Briggs test. Conative describes one’s tendencies and natural striving instincts. It’s how we do things. It’s what we will and won’t do. We all have specific things that we really like to do, and we have a natural way of doing them.

About 80 years ago, E.F. Wonderlic, the father of personnel testing, took the IQ test out of the academic world and into the corporate world. His daughter, Kathy Kolbe, later came up with the Kolbe profile test to measure the third area of our natural striving instincts–conation.

The Kolbe profile has four areas:

  1. Fact Finder–how you gather and share information.
  2. Follow Thru–how you adapt and design.
  3. Quick Start–how you handle risk.
  4. Implementor–how you handle the physical, the here and now.

Putting Kolbe to work

Let’s look at each particular area of the Kolbe profile. It turns out people do one of three things in each area: You either prevent something; you respond/accommodate; or you initiate.

  • For Fact Finders, if you’re a preventer, you’re a generalist. If you’re an initiator, you’re looking for specifics and details.
  • For Follow Thru, if you’re preventing, then you want things done randomly. However, if you’re initiating, you want things done sequentially–the same way every time.
  • As a Quick Start, you want to stabilize things if you’re in prevent mode. You want things to stay the same.  If you’re initiating, it’s about improvising and innovating.
  • Finally as an Implementor, if you’re in prevent mode, you’re going to be very abstract.  You can think about things in your mind. You don’t have to see, feel and touch them, which is what someone who initiates in an area will do. They want to feel and see it, using all their senses to determine what to do in that area.

Kolbe profiles have been very helpful to us for determining where somebody fits into an organization and whether or not they will fit into a job.

We thought this would be a great thing for you to consider if you have some quiet thinking time over the Holidays. You can take the profile for yourself at Take the “Kolbe A” profile if you’re interested in finding out what your natural striving instincts are. The test will tell you what you should be doing, what you will do and what you won’t do. It will be very helpful for anyone on your team at any stage of life.

So until next time, enjoy! Gary  | 1-800-480-7913


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