I Need Help Deciding What Career to Choose

One of our clients owns her own business. She has to wear many hats, especially the sales and marketing cap. She loves marketing because it’s fun and creative, but she hates selling. We recently discovered why.

Before coaching clients, I have them do two assessments. One shows their behavioral style, the other measures their values/attitudes.

A lot of research has been done on top sales performers. The vast majority of them have a pattern that’s high in the I (Influencing) and D (Dominant) behavioral factors and low in the S (Steadiness) and C (Cautious) factors. My client’s behavioral profile shows that’s the pattern she has. So why does she dislike selling and why is she not good at it?

To discover the behaviors and attitudes she needs to have to be a successful sales person, we benchmarked the job of sales at her company. We did two career profiles to determine the ideal behavioral style and values the job of sales requires for superior performance.

The job behavioral profile matched her behavioral style, as expected. But the results of the values profiles show why she’s not good at selling. The job values assessment indicated she should have the Utilitarian, Individualistic, and Theoretical values as her top three attitudes.

*The Utilitarian value shows a passion for getting results and making money.
*The Individualistic is a desire for power and control – one who is a natural leader and is driven to succeed.
*The Theoretical is a passion for learning and gaining knowledge for the sake of knowledge.

My client’s top three values are Utilitarian, Aesthetic, and Traditional. Her Individualistic and Theoretical values are ranked numbers 5 and 6, her lowest scores. And that explains her lack of passion for selling. She is not driven by the values that make a super sales person. In fact, her low Individualistic and Theoretical scores show she is indifferent or even hostile toward the values of someone who eats, lives, and breathes selling.

So, should she give up and do something else since she can’t afford to hire a sales force? No, she’d rather work on herself and learn to adapt the values of power and knowledge. It won’t be easy, but when she learns and starts practicing the characteristics of one with these values, she can adapt them in her job and “fake it till she makes it,” so to speak. If she can do this, she’ll be more successful. When she gets better results and starts making more money, that will satisfy her Utilitarian value and she’ll begin to like selling.

The point of this story is that it’s crucial to find a career that allows you to perform according to your natural behavioral style and one that fulfills your values/passions. When a job fits you like a glove, you’ll love it and be successful without having to adapt your attitude or behavior. If you don’t like aspects of your job but want to keep it, you can be coached on how to adapt your behavioral style or values to improve your attitude and productivity.

Before you begin your search for the perfect career, you need to know your unique attitudes and behaviors and seek a career that matches them. You could be just four assessments away from finding work that allows you to be who you really are.

And whether you work for yourself or someone else, the results will be worth it.