All of us have been exposed to models as a way to summarize ideas and we like to examine and use them to spark new models and ideas. This one, showing preferred thinking styles, was developed by Ned Herrmann while he was manager of Management of Education at General Electric. It is one of our essentials.
As you can see, the model has four quadrants showing thinking style preferences. We all use some of these in situations that require them – no one scores zero on any of them – all of us use all of the styles – but influenced by both nature and nurture, most of us develop preferences for some quadrants more than others and use them to a greater degree, while ignoring or downplaying the others. Under pressure, preferred styles often become even more dominant.
What we too often ascribe to personality differences in the workplace relates instead to difference in thinking preferences. Understanding the characteristics – as well as developing respect for the values that each quadrant contributes – allows people to work together more creatively and produce better results through increased understanding of how all people think – not just ourselves.
As an assessment tool the HBDI(R) measures the preferences of each style quantitatively by creating a kite shape on top of the model. It’s a versatile model in that it can be used for both individual and group assessment. As a certified practitioner, I have used the device with hundreds of clients and in retirement remain an evangelist. My respect for it is based on countless validation studies as well as the positive feedback from those whom I have assessed. Hundreds of the largest corporations use the assessment, and individuals can too by contacting Herrmann Solutions. You will hear more about the HBDI here from time to time.