Personality Dimensions® – Meet the Master Trainers

Continuing in our series of introducing our Master Trainers, it’s my pleasure to present Deirdre Pickerell. I’ve always considered it to be a real privilege to work with Deirdre. She’s been involved with so many aspects of Personality Dimensions® over the years that it’s hard to keep track. She always brings tremendous professionalism and her wonderful joie de vivre to everything she does. Deirdre and her colleagues at Life Strategies have breathed life into an on-line training program that shapes great Personality Dimensions® facilitators and she continues to keep in touch with Personality Dimensions®colleagues from across the country and around the globe.  ~Denise Hughes

In her own words …

Deirdre Pickerell“I’ve had the privilege of working with Personality Dimensions® since its earliest days. As a former True Colors Level 2 Trainer, I was one of those who loved using the tool but was disappointed in the quality of some of the materials and the lack of ongoing research and validation. All that changed when Personality Dimensions® was launched; it was hard to not be overjoyed with the vibrant Personality Dimensions® materials, the inclusion of descriptors and symbols, and the more robust Traits & Characteristics Choices Checklist and, of course, the inclusion of the Introversion/Extraversion Quiz.

In those early days, many of my clients hadn’t heard of Personality Dimensions® so would request additional True Colors workshops. In every single instance, however, we seamlessly shifted to Personality Dimensions® and had incredibly positive responses to this new tool.

Over the past several years, I’ve facilitated countless Personality Dimensions® workshops with corporate groups, across a wide range of industries, as well as within non-profit agencies and educational institutions. Topics have also varied, from team strengthening and career building to leadership development and work/life balance. I’ve also had the honour of co-authoring, with fellow Master Trainer Dr. Roberta Neault, several Personality Dimensions® materials, including the Conflict Management; Leadership Development; Sales, Marketing, and Customer Service; and Work-Life Balance Toolkits for Trainers; the PD Basics Materials; and the Personality Dimensions® in a Virtual World guide.

Denise has also trusted me, and the Life Strategies team, with delivering Personality Dimensions® Facilitator (Level 1) training online. This facilitator-led, interactive course mimics the face-to-face training and helps to bring Personality Dimensions to those in rural and remote communities who may not be able to access the facilitator training. We’ve also welcomed participants from 5 countries.

I love working with Personality Dimensions® and am especially proud of the impact workshops have on participants. There is immense learning that occurs as people celebrate their similarities and explore how their differences make them stronger. I’m also deeply honoured to have recently learned I am one of the longest holders of Master Trainer status are still active! Makes me wonder . . . what’s next??!”

Degrees: PhD (Human and Organizational Systems); MA (Human Development; MEd (Educational Leadership)

Certifications/Qualifications: Chartered Professional in Human Resources (CPHR); Global Career Development Facilitator Master Trainer (GCDF-i); Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Trainer; BarOn Emotional Quotient Inventory Facilitator; Personality Dimensions® Master Trainer

Deirdre can be reached through the Life Strategies website (www.lifestrategies.ca), via LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/deirdrepickerell/ or on Twitter @deirdrepickerel

Personality Dimensions® – Meet the Master Trainers

The Personality Dimensions® Master Trainers have been a vital part of the work that goes into ongoing development of Personality Dimensions®.  As first in our series, we would like to introduce you to Kate Jones, M.Ed.  Kate was kind enough to share a little bit about herself, and her history with Personality Dimensions®:

“The very first time I had the privilege of teaching temperament theory in a corporate setting, a participant, whose primary colour was Organized Gold, marvelled at its accuracy with, “I am a textbook Gold!” She clasped my hand at the end to thank me for helping her understand herself and like what she discovered about her special attributes. As a facilitator whose primary colour is Authentic Blue can you imagine how that made me feel? I’ m enabling people, one at a time, to like whom they discover is at the core of their being, Since that day I have not lost this feeling that Personality Dimensions® allows me to bring meaning into people’s lives, to help them discover their strengths, whether they work in schools, not-for-profit companies or corporate Canada.

Then there are the parents whom I work with often. Those who come to my seminar usually have at least one child that they may not understand as well as they would like, or whom they want to parent the best way they know how. In one of my very first parent seminars I had a mom approach me with tears in her eyes, saying “You just saved my family from a lot of heartache; I thought there was something very wrong with my daughter and now I realise that she is just completely different from her father and I….and that’s ok”! Again, for an Authentic Blue, I know that delivering Personality Dimensions® to people in a variety of settings is my calling.

As a result of some of my volunteer activities over the years with the Oakville Community Foundation, the United Way, the Canadian Cancer Society and OAAPT,  for example, I have had opportunity to deliver a Personality Dimensions® seminar. As for other volunteer positions I’ve been privileged to contribute in places such as churches, Burlington Art Gallery, Bronte Advisory Committee, and UWC, where my understanding of temperament has helped me understand and appreciate the people with whom I have worked over the years.”

Degrees: M.Ed. (Teaching & Learning); Honours B.A. (English & Psychology)

Certificates: Training & Development, Level IV Energy Diagnostic & Treatment Specialist, Solution Focused Counsellor, Positive Psychology Specialist, Retire To The Life You Design Facilitator, 2 Young 2 Retire Facilitator, Relocation and Transition Specialist, True Colors Facilitator, FIRO-B Facilitator, MBTI Trainer, and Personality Dimensions Facilitator/Master Trainer

Aside from being a great supporter and frequently running seminars, Kate’s contributions to Personality Dimensions® include

Kate has also authored the book: Her Journey: Stories of Entrepreneurs

Kate can be reached through her website: http://www.skills4people.com, or on Twitter @KateJonesAssoc.

Personality Dimensions® – Otto Kroeger

As many of you know, I have a long history of working with type instruments and have had the pleasure of learning from a variety of learned and interesting type professionals over the past 40 years. Few, however, reach the category of super presenter and among those leading stars one shines the brightest – and if you have every had the pleasure of meeting and learning from this person you will know immediately who I am referring to — Otto Kroeger.

Hile Rutledge worked with Otto for many years at OKA and he recently shared about Otto as the Teacher Showman – a description that, even if you never knew Otto, I am sure you will agree with once you read what Hile wrote. My thanks to Hile, and everyone at OKA, for allowing us to share this article with you.

~Denise Hughes, Director – Career/LifeSkills Resources Inc.

 

Ott-presentation-288x197The Teacher Showman — An Otto Kroeger Remembrance

When I was a kid, I could not decide if I wanted to be a teacher or an actor. Teachers seemed to have a great and important gig, but then I saw Paul Newman and Steve McQueen in The Towering Inferno, and acting seemed like the better way to go. In high school and college I did some acting and taught and tutored as well–trying both activities on for size, but I was thrust into the post-college, “get to work” world still not knowing which path I wanted to take—the classroom or the stage. It was not until I met and experienced Otto Kroeger a few years later that I discovered that this was a false choice. If you teach and train correctly, the classroom and stage converge, and you become a teacher showman.

An accomplished and enthusiastic actor/performer himself (Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof and the King in the The King and I were his two favorite roles), Otto taught me plenty about the wisdom of the stage and how it contributes to effective training. These seven lessons have become standard practice at OKA—a critical part of the OKA experience, central both to how we teach and how we craft and mold new trainers. The following insights I learned and developed from working with Otto Kroeger, the master teacher showman:

 

Know Your Lines

I saw Otto smoothly step in many times when he was co-training to redirect the answer to a question, inject some energy, to press re-set on the mood or in some other way steer the audience’s focus. He was able to do this by knowing the content and the goals of the design in such great detail. Training is not about merely transferring facts—it is about facilitating an experience.

Know your part—backwards and forwards. You never hit the boards and face an audience before you learn the lines—and not just your lines but those of everyone who takes the stage. Even if you improvise, facilitate and let your performance stay in the moment, the freedom of such performances is only workable when you first have totally immersed yourself in the part as written. The same applies to effective training. Know your subject matter, your design, your transitions, where it gets challenging and where it gets fun. Know the laugh lines and the parts of the presentation that punch and jab a bit. Know the arc and flow – the music – of your training event.

 

Fill the Space

Otto towers in my memory, but in reality he was not a big man. While he always carried some weight, he was only about 5’9’’. But he knew how to fill a stage. No one could play Tevye or the King of Siam who did not know how to use his body and voice to fill not just the stage, but our imaginations. Great trainers and great actors have this in common.

Otto taught me to use the whole room—visit each corner in setting up and processing exercises, answering questions, and telling stories. Make the whole room part of the action space. Break that fourth wall, and make the audience/participants part of the performance. Take your storytelling up a notch with gesture and animation, and fill up your training space.

 

Play to the Back Row

Otto once lamented with a mix of regret and irritation that a participant in the back of the room seemed to be dozing off in one of his presentations. That the presentation had been a keynote to over 800 people who had eagerly awarded him a standing ovation made little difference. Otto always played to the back row, which means he paid attention to the person least connected, least engaged or furthest away from the action.

I always give focused attention to the sight lines and room atmosphere for those in the worst seats in the room. Do they have obstructed views; can they hear everything; can I and the rest of the group see and hear them, and do they get as much of my energy as the folks at the front table? Every seat in the house deserves the same great show.

 

Move with Purpose

Otto understood that his words and voice were only part of what he was communicating. Over twenty years in the pulpit as a Lutheran minister taught him this as well. Gestures, walking, and movement were powerful tools to harness.

OKA teaches the trainers it trains to move (fill the space) but to do so with intention and direction. Taking a few steps in one direction or another could reinforce a content point, personally connect to a participant, grab or re-direct attention, offer visual variety, or any number of things. A good trainer—like a good performer—gives thought to movement and intentionally selects the physical presentation that best serves the lesson.

 

Control the Stage

As a student of good acting and performing, Otto knew Anton Chekov’s urging for effective stage dressing. If there is a candlestick on the mantle when the curtain goes up, that candlestick should be used in some way before the curtain comes down.

OKA’s translation of this theater principle is keeping the training room focused, neat and clean. Use plenty of visuals and training support tools, but as soon as the point is made or the topic changes, clean up, organize, pare down and focus your visuals. The only visuals participants should see are those that are still needed for support or reference. Good trainers, like good performers, control and organize their performance space.

 

Commit to the Part

Otto believed in Type, and he was equally committed to the human interaction lessons at the heart of the NTL training he designed and delivered, but he declined to train on a number of topics and tools over the years because he knew that to be believable, the performer must commit to his part. An actor should never take a part to which he/she cannot authentically commit.

If you don’t believe what you are saying, and if you have not integrated the material you are offering, you will not be seen as a trusted trainer/presenter. When you are watching a great performer, you never wonder if he or she believes what is being said or done—authenticity is core to a powerful performance or training.

 

Comedy Beats Tragedy

Otto died in 2013. That year’s Best Picture Academy Award winner was 12 Years a Slave. That same year, Despicable Me 2 (the Steve Carell comedy) was one of the biggest money makers—earning more than 7 times what the gritty Oscar winner brought in. While there are many provocative and thought-provoking conclusions that can be drawn from this, the important one here is simple and powerful- people are generally more drawn to comedy than tragedy. Hamlet is amazing, but Much Ado About Nothing is more fun.

Otto was always interested in making people laugh. Facts need to be conveyed, but when they come clothed in a funny story, they are both enjoyed and remembered. Having fun and laughing are common experiences at an OKA event. Keep them laughing to keep them learning.

 

HileOKA President Hile Rutledge is one of America’s most respected trainers in both the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) and the EQ-i® (Emotional Intelligence) assessment instruments.  He is the author of the MBTI® Introduction Workbook, the EQ Workbook, the Four temperaments Workbook and co-author of the best-seller Type Talk at Work, as well as the creator of OKA online tutorials, videos and many other publications and training tools.  Hile’s primary area of expertise is the practical use of assessment tools in the development of self-awareness and improved self-management for leaders, teams and organizations.  www.oka-online.com