Connector Creative Pioneer Profile
What is the 5 Voices?
Everyone Speaks. Not Everyone is heard.
Everyone has a leadership voice, whether they know it or not. From the most quiet to the most gregarious, we all have the ability to lead others.
The problem is most people don't know their leadership voice or how to use it. Some don't know what it is, others are insecure in their voice and have been told it is unimportant, and others immaturely overuse their voice and dominate the airwaves.
The 5 Voices is designed to help every individual discover their leadership voice and be empowered to use it effectively.
Can you imagine a team of people who were self-aware, knew how to communicate, and were able to bring their best to the table everyday? What would that do for culture? For productivity? For Profitability?
In short, a lot.
We believe teams and whole organizations can be transformed when everyone operates securely in their own voice and learns to value the voices of others.
The 5 Voices helps achieve the following objectives:
Greater Self Awareness
Learn your voice and understand what it's like to be on the other side of your leadership.
Discover the sweet spots of those on your team, get better aligned, and reach higher levels of performance.
Communicate what you mean without people taking it the wrong way and getting offended.
Delegate more effectively to save time and increase productivity.
Quicker Decision Making
Learn how to listen better, ask helpful questions, and make quicker decisions.
The 5 Voices Assumptions
Our "Voice" is made up of all 5 Voices
Some voices are more natural to us than others
Maturity allows us to value the contribution each voice brings
Nature, Nurture, and Choice have all played a part
Don't assume you know what someone else's foundational voice is
Don't assume you know what each word means
Your Foundational Voice
The Connector Creative Pioneer
Connectors are persuasive and inspirational communicators - rallying people to causes and things they believe in.
They are incredibly resourceful - "Whatever we need, I can get it or I have a source."
They have the capacity to maintain a large number of relationships.
They know how to connect with people and their aspirations.
They need appreciation and credit for making key connections - "Are you aware of what I’ve done?"
Their people-pleasing tendencies mean they often struggle to bring effective challenge.
They often struggle to hear or engage fully with critical feedback.
Relational networks, internal collaboration, and effective communication.
What to watch out for
Connectors always interpret challenge of their ideas as personal.
You make up 11% of the global population.
How to empower them
Give them time to share their ideas and passions, appreciate before you critique.
Your Voice Order
Your foundational Voice is Connector. The Connector Voice is a future-oriented Voice, and is the champion of relational networks, internal collaboration, and effective communication, which we explained in more detail in the previous section. This is your strongest Voice through which you view the world, and the Voice through which all other Voices are expressed.
Your secondary Voice is Creative. The Creative Voice is the champion of future ideas, innovation, and organizational integrity.
In the 5 Voices model, the secondary Voice plays a crucial role in how you express your overall “Voice”.
More specifically, your Creative Voice is expressed through the lens of your Connector Voice, and it reinforces the future-oriented perspective of your Connector. With Creative as your second Voice, you are great at developing a compelling, insightful, big-picture vision for the people you are rallying around you with your foundational Connector Voice. The ingenuity and innovative nature of your Creative Voice kicks into overdrive when you are able to dream, collaborate, and brainstorm aloud with the people around you. Additionally, your people-oriented Connector Voice also leverages the Creative Voice to detect threats and opportunities in the future, especially as it relates to people and values.
The combination of these two Voices as your top two strengths means that you are always thinking about the future, you are very resourceful, you care deeply about people, and you are brilliant at connecting and rallying people to causes you believe in.
Pioneer is your tertiary Voice, sometimes referred to as your third Voice. The Pioneer Voice is the champion of strategic vision, results, and problem-solving.
In the 5 Voices model, the tertiary Voice is typically a Voice that you value and can access when it’s helpful, but might be more of a learned strength than a natural one. For you, this is a very important Voice in how you operate, which is why the combination of your Voice order is referred to as “Connector, Creative, Pioneer”.
Also, because it’s third on the list, your expression of the Pioneer Voice will be shaped through the filter of your first two Voices (the Connector and Creative). It will not be the same as a first Voice Pioneer. In fact, you tend to utilize your Pioneer Voice in specific situations to support your first two Voices. For example, after you have used the Connector/Creative strengths of your Voice to develop a game-changing vision to benefit others and make the world a better place, you will likely tap into the strength, persuasiveness, conviction, and drive of the Pioneer Voice to help you make that vision a reality.
Your 4th Voice, also known as your blindspot, is Nurturer. The Nurturer Voice is the champion of people, relational harmony, and values.
In the 5 Voices model, your 4th Voice is your blindspot because it’s typically the Voice (of the 5) that you might assume you are better at than you really are. For example, you may connect with the Nurturer’s love of people and desire for relational harmony. But whereas a first Voice Nurturer thrives on caring for the immediate physical and emotional needs of another, that would likely be exhausting (and maybe a little boring) if you have to do it for an extended length of time. Instead, Connector / Creative / Pioneers tend to express their care for people either in big gestures or by playing the “consultant” role - looking for possibilities, new ideas, and providing recommendations to others in their network to help someone.
Take time to understand the value of the Nurturer Voice and identify ways for you to step into maturing in this Voice over time.
Your 5th Voice, also known as your Nemesis, is the Guardian. Guardians are the champions of due diligence, resources, and efficient systems and processes.
The reason we call this your nemesis Voice is because Guardians see the world in a way that is diametrically opposed from how you see the world.
This doesn’t mean that you cannot tap into the strength and values of the Guardian Voice, it just means it will typically be the most difficult Voice for you to access and appreciate.
How does this manifest in your Voice? Well, it means that the typical strengths of the Guardian - roles or tasks that involve a consistent, repetitive execution, or careful study and tedious due diligence - can wear you out quickly. In fact, those things probably feel like a “dream killing wet blanket” to your ideas because you thrive on change, innovation, and uncertainty while preferring a “gut feel” approach to decision-making.
That’s why this is likely an area of growth for you as a Connector/Creative/Pioneer. If you can learn to tap into a healthy expression of the Guardian Voice by introducing some flexible but consistent processes and criteria to help you filter your ideas and initiatives, then you’ll find your influence and effectiveness increase dramatically.
By taking time to understand how Guardians view the world as well as how they process information, and make decisions, it will help you increase your maturity and effectiveness in using this Voice.
Strengths & Challenges
Visioning the future so that people can truly fulfill their potential. They have boundless energy for people and new ideas it’s hard to keep a Connector/Creative/Pioneer down for long! Naturally talented at just about everything. Natural connectors, when they believe in something they are able to get everyone else excited about it.
They find it difficult to discipline their talent and remain committed once the initial excitement has worn off. They struggle to stay consistent and disciplined in their external communication. In their enthusiasm and passion they will often over promise and under deliver. All critique feels personal and they are easily discouraged.
Suggested Growth Opportunities
Discretion and Discipline in when, where and how you share your ideas! Finding one area of your life where you commit to aligning discipline and natural talent. Once you see the results you will be amazed. Being prepared to challenge others even when you feel uncomfortable doing it. Preventing passive aggression building up towards particular individuals. Committing to apprenticing others in what you are good at. This takes time and Connector/Creative/Pioneers often want quick wins!
Stress & Triggers
What happens under moderate stress?
You generate more and more ideas and rarely allow time for any to come to fruition. You become desperate for affirmation from the authority figures in your life. You become passive aggressive towards those you feel are not fully on board. Ideas come on thick and fast, and the team becomes exhausted with the constant change.
What happens under extreme stress?
Start to withdraw from people and to doubt yourself. Become self-critical, over-analyzing your mistakes. Seek sensory escapism through over eating, over drinking, sexual escapism.
The Danger Zone represents the potential we all have to hurt others with our words and actions when we are frustrated, unaware, accidental, or immature. Like weapons that can hurt others, these are harmful patterns of behavior that can be triggered by certain things that are unique to each Voice. It's important that we are aware of these things so that we can know ourselves to lead ourselves in a healthier direction. If we do not, we risk undermining ourselves, our relationships, and the team at large.
When a Connector enters the Danger Zone, the damage they can do can be thought of like a Cyber Warfare specialist who sabotages and undermines someone else's influence or ideas.
• Behind the Scenes
• Sowing Doubt
• Use relationships and messaging to undermine the influence or standing of others and their ideas
Understanding Your Triggers
There are certain things that can trigger you to step into the danger zone. It's important that you are aware of these and spot them before it's too late.
• People taking credit for your work
• People not recognizing the validity of your ideas
• You sense people aren’t for you
• People aren’t willing to collaborate
What does a healthy Connector Creative Pioneer look like?
They have a love of exploring the future and dreaming with others as to what could be. They have an ability to be such a compelling communicator, one who is able to connect people to future possibilities, drawing them in with stories. They have a love of helping people make personal breakthroughs and live into a future that helps them fulfill their potential. They have a fully integrated life, always living towards a compelling future vision but doing it will people they love and care about.
How do they stay healthy?
They need to establish safe relationships in their lives where they dream about the future and know that everything they share is provisional. They need to have the capacity to brainstorm out loud with others in order to access their best creativity. They need to plan carefully when they are going to do repetitive detail orientated tasks and not get lost in the micro details for too long. They need to believe in what they are doing, they can’t sell a compelling vision of a future they don’t believe in.
What does an unhealthy Connector Creative Pioneer look like?
When they don't have the freedom to dream out loud in a safe space with someone they trust. When they start to fear failure and become ever more reactive, jumping from one idea to another, burning leadership capital with their team. When they start to interpret critique of their ideas as personal and become defensive and passive aggressive.
Celebrate life with me and understand that at my best I don't separate work, rest, and play easily. Regularly ask me what I’m excited about and then let me tell my stories! Never stop believing in me, appreciate my strategic connections, and encourage me to keep dreaming about changing the world and expanding our influence.
Connecting with Others
One of the most powerful uses of the 5 Voices is learning how to connect with others in an effective and productive way. To help you understand how to do that, take a look at the 5 Voices Dynamics tool, and learn the rules of engagement for each of the other Voices below.
[Warning: Do not assume you know what someone else's Voice is. Let them tell you what Voice they connect with before using these methods of connection]
The 5 Voices Dynamics is a powerful tool for understanding the primary differences between each of the 5 Voices. The simple, visual way it displays these differences allows us to easily facilitate conversations about significant team dynamics like team synergies, core strengths, key differences, and potential conflicts.
We start by defining the two axes that highlight the core functions/perspectives of each Voice.
The horizontal axis defines how people Process Information.
The vertical axis defines how people Make Decisions.
The two ends of the spectrum on each axis represent the primary differences in the Voices.
For the horizontal axis we discuss the dynamic of processing information from either a Present Oriented or Future Oriented perspective.
Present Oriented processors are focused on what they can touch, taste, see, hear, and feel. They live in the present and immediate world of today.
Future Oriented processors are focused on what is possible. They live in the future and more abstract world of possibilities that "could be" for tomorrow.
For the vertical axis we discuss the dynamic of decision making from either a Systems & Logic or People & Values perspective. Those who prefer to make decisions based on Systems & Logic will prefer using logical, rational, fact-based criteria that makes strategic sense within a particular system or framework. They value the "objective truth" as more important than feelings, emotions, or relational harmony. Separating their decisions from emotions and relational considerations enables them to make hard decisions. However, without developing a high level of emotional intelligence, this can leave others with the feeling that they are cold, calculating, or impersonal.
On the other hand, those who prefer to make decisions based on People & Values will prioritize relational harmony, impact on people, and alignment with core values. They value the health and betterment of people and relationships as the definition of success. This makes them strong champions of people and culture, but it can undermine the effectiveness of their decisions or influence with others if they don't support their position with a basis in fact and logical reasoning.
The location of each Voice is significant in how it informs our understanding of Team Dynamics.
Understanding that the Voices positioned opposite one another are diametrically opposed in their perspectives of how they take in information and make decisions is a key insight.
We call them Nemesis Voices. Nemesis does not mean they must be enemies, just that these people are wired to think opposite of each other. They must watch out for conflict and be intentional to recognize the value each brings.
In summary, these two axes represent the two most fundamental dynamics of personality that most significantly influence behavior.
Using this tool to better understand our team and ourselves will help us become stronger and more intentional resulting in higher performing teams.
Connecting with Guardians
When connecting with Guardians, it’s important to remember that they are the champions of due diligence, resources, and efficient systems and processes. As a Connector, you are the champion of relational networks, internal collaboration, and effective communication.
It’s important to understand that Guardians are directly opposite of you in how they process information, and how they make decisions. For this reason, they are your “Nemesis Voice”. This doesn’t mean they have to be your enemy, it just means they see the world in a way that is diametrically opposed from how you see the world.
Neither view is better or worse than the other, they are simply different. Each Voice is valuable and brings a certain perspective and skill that the other does not have. It is crucial that you are aware of these differences as you seek to connect with Guardians.
Guardians are very present-oriented, which means they process information with an eye toward the present state of things, absorbing all the details of what is happening in the here and the now, especially as it relates to systems and objective, tangible things. They prefer to move through the world in a sequential way, starting with “what is” and then moving forward one step at a time.
Connectors on the other hand are very future-oriented, which means you process information and your experiences in the world with an eye toward the future, the possibilities, and the vision for “what could be?”. You focus on the big-picture, looking for patterns behind what’s on the surface of things, especially as it relates to the potential and betterment of people.
When interacting with Guardians, you may find their focus on the present, their attention to detail, and their desire to see each step laid out on the path to your vision as slowing you down, which can be frustrating. They will usually have a lot of questions, but it’s important to invite those questions, do your homework, and be patient. Take time to affirm their commitment to efficiency, their stewardship of resources, and their desire to protect important systems and processes. From there, invite them to build the bridge with you to the future you see and the practical reasons or data behind why this will be an improvement over the current system.
When it comes to decision making, Guardians tend to make decisions based on what seems logical, rational, objectively true, and systematically efficient. It doesn’t mean that they don’t like people, or that they don’t value new ideas. What it does mean, however, is that they find it easier to separate people, emotions, and the relational impact of actions and decisions from the decision-making process. They tend to prioritize what’s most important and healthy for the system rather than the individual. That’s why when push comes to shove, Guardians tend to value objective, logical truth over relational harmony.
They also have a more risk-averse approach to new ideas and decision-making, first looking at why something won’t work and finding the holes in it to protect the system. But they are usually quite reasonable and open to new ideas and decisions when you come with data, research, experience, or pilot project results and a willingness to answer the tough questions as to why it will work and how it will be better.
On the other hand, Connectors tend to make decisions based on what will maintain or strengthen the relational harmony with those around them. Their sense of personal alignment with their values, the passion they have for people, and their vision of a better world for those around them tends to override systems, data, or other objective standards when it comes to decision-making. This of course can create a collision course with the Guardian. It can lead to drama or conflict because it is difficult for the Connector to give the same kind of weight and credibility to those objective standards that the Guardian desires, and the Guardian tends to undervalue the emotional and relational harmony that the Connector prioritizes.
When interacting with Guardians, be sure to do your homework, come with data, and be prepared to answer the Guardians questions. If you can honor the current system and their desire for efficiency, process, and due diligence, then demonstrate how this will make the system better, then you’ll find them much more receptive to your perspective.
Rules of Engagement for Connecting with Guardians
• Encourage and invite Guardians to keep asking the difficult questions - it’ll save you a lot of time, money, and hassle in the end.
• Commit to staying engaged with the Guardian’s questions for as long as you can - they are the champions of due diligence and this is how they protect resources, systems, and processes.
• Affirm the Guardian’s commitment to the truth and stewardship of financial resources.
Connecting with Nurturers
When connecting with Nurturers, it’s important to remember that they are the champions of people, relational harmony, and values. As a Connector, there are some attributes of the Nurturer Voice that align with how you view the world, but with a few important differences.
Nurturers are extremely present-oriented, which strongly contrasts with your future orientation. They are highly attuned to the details (especially as it relates to people) and thrive on caring for the emotional and physical needs of people in the moment. Their step-by-step approach to understanding the world around them drastically differs from your intuitive, big picture approach, and may cause you to feel bogged down when interacting with them. When it comes to making changes, Nurturers prefer incremental adjustments over time, and tend to avoid making drastic changes, which might be frustrating for you.
When it comes to decision making, Nurturers prefer to make decisions based on people and relational harmony, like you. Also like you, they prefer to avoid conflict and they don’t want to see anyone left behind. However, given their present-orientation, their decisions tend to follow sequential, linear thought processes so their decisions about people’s wellbeing will be heavily informed by the nuances of relational and emotional details. When interacting with Nurturers, you will find it easier to understand and appreciate their approach to decision making because this is highly aligned with how you make decisions around people, but the conclusions and solutions you come to will likely differ somewhat in substance and scope due to your differences in Processing.
Rules of Engagement for Connecting with Nurturers
• Be intentional to invite the Nurturer’s opinion with sincerity and attentiveness - they represent 43% of the population, whether you like it or not.
• Be careful of critiquing the Nurturer’s idea too quickly; affirm and draw out their thoughts first.
• Affirm the Nurturer’s commitment to champion our people and defend our values.
Connecting with Pioneers
When connecting with Pioneers, it’s important to remember that they are the champions of strategic vision, results-focus, and problem solving. As a Connector, there are some attributes of the Pioneer Voice that align with how you view the world, but with a few important differences.
Pioneers are future-oriented like you. They have the capacity to understand abstract concepts, and they love to tackle big problems. They also thrive on vision, innovation, and competitive environments. So spend time with Pioneers strategizing about the future and brainstorming new ideas, possibilities, and strategies to help the team win.
Pioneers are highly logical and competitive by nature. They prefer to detach relationships and people from the decision-making process. They love to win and are always looking to make decisions based on objective frameworks and strategies that help them conquer their objective or opponent. At times, these perspectives and the direct style of their communication can feel at odds with the Connector’s desire for relational harmony and the tendency to put people first. When interacting with Pioneers, you will find it more difficult to understand and appreciate their approach to decision making because this is less aligned with how you make decisions. Do your best to separate yourself from your ideas and don’t take their analysis or critique personally. Invite them to collaborate on solving big problems and ground your own opinions in data, and research. Then communicate with a calm and logical tone. This will increase your chances of connecting and developing chemistry with Pioneers.
Rules of Engagement for Connecting with Pioneers
• Invite other Pioneers to give their view or opinion before stating yours.
• Even though they can likely handle it, don’t assume they’re asking you to critique their ideas. Ask first.
• Be mindful of their preference for how reflective or expressive they are, as well as how adaptive or structured they are.
• Commit to giving Pioneers space and authority to pursue the objective - don’t micromanage them.
• Affirm their capacity for strategic thinking and invite them to collaborate to help the team win.
Connecting with Creatives
When connecting with Creatives, it’s important to remember that they are the champions of future ideas, innovation, and organizational integrity. As a Connector, there are a lot of attributes of the Creative Voice that align with how you view the world, with a few important differences.
Creatives are extremely future-oriented, not too dissimilar from you. More than any other Voice, the Creative spends time thinking about and imagining a world that does not yet exist. Creatives, like you, tend to be comfortable with abstract concepts, easily able to grasp the big picture. Spend time with Creatives dreaming about the future and brainstorming about ideas, possibilities, and innovation. Hint: it’s helpful though if you give them time ahead of your brainstorming to think about the subject at hand because that’s how you’ll get their best thinking.
When it comes to decision making, there are two types of Creatives you will encounter.
The first is the “Creative Pioneer”, who is more logical by nature. Creative Pioneers prefer to make decisions based on logic, rationale, and objective frameworks. When interacting with these types of Creatives, you will likely find it more difficult than other Creatives because of this decision-making approach. You may find their focus on objective frameworks and the piercing questions they ask in search of “truth” and “logical” solutions to sometimes be at odds with people, relational harmony, and interpersonal niceties. Their ability to detach emotions and relationships from decision-making may come off as cold or calculating if they fail to express it with tone and tact.
On the other hand, you will likely find it easier to connect with the second type of Creative, the “Creative Connector”, who is more relational by nature. Creative Connectors prefer to make decisions more inline with how you make decisions - based on relational harmony and prioritizing how the decision will affect the people involved.
This does not mean that they (or you) avoid using logic when making decisions. It simply means that their default starting point is based on relationships. When interacting with these types of Creatives, feel free to be you and passionately express your vision, your care for people, and the opportunities you see.
Rules of Engagement for Connecting with Connectors
• Encourage Creatives to dream big, letting them know it’s okay to be wrong sometimes - no one is perfect.
• Ask clarifying questions and commit to drawing out the Creative’s thought process before critiquing their ideas. Sometimes it takes a few rounds of questioning to mine out the gold in what they are trying to communicate.
• Affirm the Creative’s commitment to integrity and the ability to see the future in a way others can’t.
Connecting with other Connectors
When it comes to connecting with other Connectors, it’s important to remember that you both process and make decisions in a very similar manner. However, this doesn’t always mean that you will align. The most common misalignment between Connectors tends to arise from one Connector failing to deliver on something when the other has extended their own relational capital to help make it happen. For the Connector, their relationships, networks, and reputation mean everything to them so when someone damages that in any way, it can produce conflict and undermine the relationship. Additionally, conflict may also come from failing to give one another due credit for their efforts, which becomes a personal affront.
In any case, disagreements between two Connectors can lead to a “chill” in the relationship and eventually a disconnect where they go their own separate ways. Leverage the following rules of engagement when connecting with another Connector.
Rules of Engagement for Connecting with Connectors
• Encourage Connectors to sell their ideas as passionately as they can.
• When Connectors share a new idea with you, don’t critique it at first. Start by celebrating, and only begin collaborating if asked. Remind them that your practical and detailed questions are not personal.
• Affirm their energy, passion, and ability to communicate in a way that connects with others.