Dispelling Professional Development Myths!

Life is more than a heartbeat or the ability to breathe, eat, see
and feel. An individual’s life rotates around the quality of his
relationships with other people.

Life is people, and it is not so much what they do for you as
what you do for them and what you give each other.

Maxwell Maltz,
Author of Psycho-Cybernetics
1899 – 1975


Myth: an unfounded or false notion; a popular belief or tradition that has grown up around something or someone; especially one embodying the ideals and institutions of a society, a segment of society, or a profession

With all our professional development processes and programs, why do the majority of individuals continue to dislike their jobs—from a feeling of mild irritation to downright loathing?

Because our current career, HR, and professional development methods are not working!

A study by USHRA revealed that 82% of employed executives and 78% of employees were looking for another job. If we want to achieve higher levels of engagement and personal fulfillment, something must change.

At 16, I knew that communicating and encouraging others would be part of my calling, but two major factors challenged me.

  1.  As the third-generation first-born male on a dairy farm, I was being groomed to take over the family business.
  2. My Grade 9 English teacher told me I would never amount to anything because of my poor English skills. Because of them, I almost failed high school.

Declining the family-farm opportunity, I pursued the business of sales. In 1989, I made the decision to leave a successful sales position to start a career as a sales trainer and coach. Soon, I met Dr. Terry Anderson of Consulting Resource Group International, Inc. (CRG) and joined his team.

Professor Anderson had founded CRG a decade earlier when teaching Psychology to third- and fourth-year university students. He was using MBTI and DiSC as part of the curriculum and found serious design and integrity issues with those tests. We have the same concerns about those tools today.

Out of pure frustration, Dr. Anderson decided to design a better assessment, hence the creation of CRG’s first assessment, the Personal Style Indicator (PSI), precursor to CRG’s proprietary Holistic Personality Development Factors Model and Personal Style Model.

While still connected with CRG, in the ‘90s I owned a flourishing training and HR consulting firm. I was never home. I lived on airplanes and in hotels around the world, 300 days a year. With a wife and two small children, I knew my business model had to change. So 8 years ago I purchased CRG, to help others live, lead, and work On Purpose!

While earning honors in my MBA studies, I discovered I have dyslexia. That Grade 9 teacher could not have predicted I would become a thought-leader on Personal Style and the co-developer and author of a holistic assessment system that establishes a foundation for helping people live On Purpose. I overcame my dyslexia and have written over 3.5 million words of content.

My new book, Why Aren’t You More Like Me?™ is based on my experience with CRG and my 22 years in the personal and professional development industry—assisting individuals, families, teams, and organizations to realize their potential. The book challenges many outdated practices in the development professions.

In the Action Steps below, I list just a few of the many strategies you’ll discover in Why Aren’t You More Like Me?™, to enable individuals to embrace a development process that fulfils their needs and puts them in a position to contribute to the well-being of others at the highest level.

1. Know Your Personal Style

To be intentional in their interpersonal relationships, career, leadership, or personal and professional decisions, people must be aware of their Personal Style. Research by Talent Smart suggests only 2% of the population will realize their potential without that knowledge. EVERY person should complete a Personal Style assessment to understand his or her Personal Style.

The research concluded that over 70% of the population has no idea what their Personal Style might be. When I conducted the PSI process with my kids’ Grade 8 and 9 classes, the students immediately got it—and used the information to make decisions that very day.

At CRG, we strongly believe that many popular style assessments/tests lead individuals in the wrong direction and provide incorrect information.

2. Understand the Difference—Styles, Profiles, Careers

Personal Style or temperament tools should NEVER be used to determine a career path or establish career clusters. We need to stop that practice immediately. Why? Personal Style does not measure gifts, talents, interests, abilities, or IQ. If 50% of the people successful in a career like accounting have a specific profile, what about the other 50% who also are successful, yet represent different profiles? Rigid style-profiling discriminates against people.

3. Take Assessments that Allow You to Act Independently

People don’t want to take a test. Assessments that require a professional person to debrief or interpret the results create a co-dependent relationship with the participants instead of an interdependent relationship. That’s not to suggest we shouldn’t have professionals help us through a development process but CRG makes sure the learning can stand on its own.

To act independently and apply the information to their lives and careers, participants must understand CRG’s concepts, results, and models.

4. The Extroversion Introversion Continuum: It’s Not What You Think!

In the book, I go in-depth on the research behind our breakthrough definitions of extroversion and introversion and how those terms describe the way we react to our environment.

CRG’s definition of Extroversion and Introversion

is a person’s orientation toward the environment.


  • Extroversion: “Biologically less sensitive to environmental stimuli”

In the CRG model, extroverts see the environment as an opportunity to be influenced. They are programmed to initiate and feel they can tell the environment what to do. They need strong stimuli to gain and hold their attention and motivate them toward action. Weak environmental stimuli won’t hold their attention because extroverts lack the biological sensitivity to appreciate or value a low-stimulus event.

They have little fear and make decisions quickly, with few concerns for making a mistake. They prefer adventure to routine and they like taking risks. They prefer to lead, not follow.

  • Introversion: “Biologically more sensitive to environmental stimuli”

In our PSI model, introverts see the environment as a place where they must be careful and cautious. They internally let the environment tell them what to do—which is the opposite behavior to extroverts, who perceive the environment as a big place that moves fast and is unpredictable. Introverts typically take more time to make decisions. They want to know the rules and prefer to follow rather than lead.

Introverts can be very sensitive to environmental stimuli and react more quickly to the subtle elements in their surroundings. They prefer weak stimuli to strong stimuli, which often overwhelm their “sensing levels.” Introverts will choose a tranquil environment over an active one.

Introverts are people with a stronger need and preference to “wait and see” before behaving because they are naturally more cautious of the environment. Due to their high levels of sensitivity, they prefer to react and adapt to—rather than act upon—their environment.

5.  The Power of Knowing Your Behavioral Values

To filter all the choices and options we have in life, we must make values-based decisions, not opportunity-based decisions. Are you aware of your core motivational/behavioral values? When you are, you can screen opportunities—personal and professional—against your values grid.

In the book, I help you determine/confirm your Top 5 to 7 behavioral values while you learn about the related needs and fears inherent in those priorities. What if you could make the right decision (almost) every time in your life? That’s what the values process achieves for individuals and teams.

6. Play to Your Strengths, Not Your Weaknesses

Stop trying to overcome your weaknesses; that approach is highly overrated. Although we should be aware of our weaknesses and their implications in our everyday lives, trying to change who we are at our core is counter-intuitive. Don’t fuss about what you are not! Accentuate the positive! People are designed with specific gifts, talents, and Personal Style. Play to those attributes.

Those are a few of the strategies contained in Why Aren’t You More Like Me?™ to help you get on the right track.

Until next time, keep Living On Purpose.



Ken Keis

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