Are you a Multiplier or a Diminisher?

Are you a Multiplier or a Diminisher?  2015 ND1I was fortunate to facilitate a business and innovation strategy session with my friend Bill McDonough at Notre Dame last week. It was part of Strategies for Success hosted by Executive Forums. There were about 20 owners/executives in our all-day session. One thing for sure was the people in the room were multipliers. They were investing time learning new growth strategies, learning from others in the room and sharing. This type of environment is energizing because you literally seem intelligence and humble learning in action.

One of the criteria for being in any of the peer groups is you cannot have diminisher traits. The impact is negative and can be very destructive just as the diminisher attitude can damage a family or a business. I am hypersensitive to diminshers both in my professional and personal life. They can drain you and stop you from achieving the very things you were put on this earth to accomplish. Checkout the below explanations of each.

Multipliers are leaders who are able to amplify the capability of people around them. They are able to optimize output by playing to people’s unique intelligence and capability. The goal of a multiplier is not to get more done by multiplying his own efforts but instead to multiply the output of those around him.

  • They are talent magnets: they attract and optimize talent.
  • They are liberators: they create intensity that requires the best thinking of the team.
  • They are challengers: they define opportunities that cause people to stretch.
  • They are debate makers: they drive sound decisions through rigorous debate.
  • They are investors: they instill ownership and accountability.

Diminishers despite having smart people on their team they are unable to reach their goals. They are absorbed in their own capabilities. They tend to stifle productivity and deplete the organization of intelligence and capability. Many times this organizational depletion is done unintentionally by the diminisher. They are unaware of the affect they are having on those around them.

  • They are empire builders: they hoard resources and underutilize talent.
  • They are tyrants: they create tense environments that suppress thinking, creativity, and capability.
  • They are know-it-all’s: they give directives that showcase how much they know.
  • They are “the decision maker”: they make centralized, abrupt decisions that confuse the organization.
  • They are micro managers: they drive results through their personal involvement.

Well, did you end up in multiplier or diminisher camp? It can be hard to see yourself in either of these 2 buckets, so engage a true friend that will give you honest feedback.

Here are some quick multiplier outcomes that I found interesting:

  • Multipliers get an average 1.97 times more capability out of people
  • They access 100% of people’s current abilities, plus stretch them to expand their abilities.
  • When children praised for hard work do better than those praised for intelligence.
  • The logic of Multiplication:
    • Most people in organizations are underutilized.
    • All capability can be leveraged with the right leadership.
    • Therefore, intelligence and capability can be multiplied without increasing investment.

Action Itemsmultiplier

  • Identify if you are Diminisher
    • If so, get out of that camp immediately.
    • Give yourself emotional permission to change.
    • Get coaching or whatever you need. (contact me for consulting)
  • Evaluate Your Self-Learning Plan(s)
    • You should always have a continual learning plan for yourself.
    • Make it a balanced learning plan – leadership, life, faith, etc.
  • If You Lead Others
    • Make sure you have learning plans and career paths for them.
    • Families and companies with great culture invest in training.
  • Read Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter
  • Read Consistency – Leaders Read and Readers Lead

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Good Luck, and remember you don’t plan to fail, you fail to plan.