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"Ian has expert level knowledge regarding the Enneagram and its business applications. He is fantastic at working with business units, partnerships, colleagues, co-workers, to create deeper understanding of the motivations that drive each type and how to best communicate to get results."
Julie Chende, President – Next Level Strategies, Inc.





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Q:  It really seems like I could fall into just about any of the types.  How can I tell if I'm choosing the right one?

A:  Depending on your relative age and experience, you've learned coping strategies from those around you, and likely incorporated them into your own way of being.  One view will be the first to come to you, rather like a word association game.


We all embody all Nine Types, but one Type is your primary core lens.  If you threw a rubber ball into a box, it would likely bounce off of every wall, but it would hit one wall first.  That would be your Primary Type.  From there, we are an amalgam of at least Five Types: your Primary, your two adjacent Wings, (which have differing levels of influence) your lens in Stress, and your lens in Security.  Obviously, your own blend is what makes you unique, and yet allows for deeply shared experience. 


Two Rules of Thumb in Enneagram Assessments:


Age and Experience – Think of yourself as you were at age 25 or younger.

As we progress through our lives, we take on and learn coping strategies from those around us.  We are sort of like a giant snowball rolling downhill picking up more and more snow, and yet that core in the very center (which is still you) hasn’t changed.  It can be hard to sort out what your own original strategies are unless you place yourself at the age before this process got under way.  If you are 25 or younger this is a breeze, but for many of us it’s kind of a stretch.  This is the age that most people really take their original coping strategies “on the road,” and the “cross-contamination” that can confuse the assessment usually begins.


Motivation not Behavior – Don’t focus on what you do.  Focus on why you do it.

The real magic of the Enneagram is how it addresses who you are on a much deeper level than defining yourself by what you do.  You and I could do the exact same thing for completely different reasons, thus the behavior itself doesn’t tell us nearly as much.  If you like to help people, it could be because it's "the right thing to do," or because it fits your internal image of yourself to be that way, or it could be a knee-jerk compulsion that you don't even think about.  Every type has its own relationship to everything.  An Eight wants the information that will keep her on top, where a Six wants the information that will keep him safe.  A Two wants information that will help connect him to others, where a One wants the correct information presented in a clean and neat manner.  Three wants the information that will help him win, and Five wants as much information as she can get.  It's not about wanting information; it's about why you want it.



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