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Discovering Your Unique Ability

December 26, 2012

Public Speaking MaleHow do you discover your Unique Ability?  How do you systematically identify activities that consume your life and drain your energy?  How do you identify tasks that fill your bucket with excitement, passion and purpose?  I would like to suggest that you begin with the Kolbe A Index™ (  Developed by Kathy Kolbe, the Index is a proven and reliable tool to assess your instinctive and natural approach to creative problem solving.  It is unique from any other mental measurement tool because there are no right or wrong or good or bad answers.

Kolbe’s definition of success is the freedom to be yourself – to appreciate your instinctive talents and harness these talents in synergistic ways to drive productivity. 

The ability to understand your natural talents – especially your Unique Ability – will allow you to be highly motivated, creative and focused.  Research substantiates that human instinct is the power behind actions.  It is the source of mental or conative energy.  Historically, assessment tools have measured cognitive (IQ) and the affective (personality) parts of the mind.  While these tools are helpful in selecting, training and managing people, they miss instinctive talents.  Understanding instincts, combined with intelligence and personality, will dramatically help you as you move forward in your career.


The Kolbe A Index™ is focused on your natural advantage – the degree of intensity in each of the following action modes.

Fact Finder – The way one gathers and shares information

Follow Through – The way one sorts or stores information

Quick Start – The way one deals with risk and uncertainty

Implementer – The way we handle space and tangible solutions

investigateYou have 100% of your mental energy and creativity distributed across the action modes listed above.  A corresponding number from 1 to 10 in the Kolbe A Index™ determines your mode of operation or modus operandi (MO).  As you discover your unique MO, you begin to understand and appreciate your instinctive or natural ways in taking action.  The first, and most important, step is discovering your Unique Ability.  Abraham Maslow, the guru of self actualization discovered that each person seeks “to be true to his or her own nature, to trust him or herself, to be authentic, spontaneous, honestly expressive, to look for sources in his or her actions”.

I would like to suggest a six step process in helping you discover your Unique Ability:

  1. Unique Ability Question:  Begin by asking yourself what activities give you energy, purpose and passion?  You may also wish to consider asking other people who know you the same question.
  2. The Kolbe A Index™:  It will allow you to understand your natural and instinctive talents.
  3. Unique Ability Habits:  These are the things that you do automatically to produce your best results.  You develop these habits over the course of your lifetime.  Begin by listing the habits.  Pick the ones that reflect your core values.
  4. Unique Ability Statement:  Consider expressing your Unique Ability in one sentence.  Begin with words such as “My Unique Ability is characterized by my superior ability to ….”. 
  5. Unique Ability Future:  Envision yourself at some point in the future spending 100% of your time on your Unique Ability.  This skill of visioning is a powerful process of becoming clear about your ideal future.  Visioning is understood and appreciated by top athletes, entertainers and successful people in all walks of life.  Visioning your Unique Ability will give you a sense of clarity, confidence, purpose and passion.
  6. Unique Ability Goal Setting:  Goal setting is a powerful process of becoming clear about your ideal future, designing an action plan to get there, launching into action and persisting until you reach your destination.  This final step of the Unique Ability process is crucial.

Focus on Your Uniqueness – Delegate Everything Else. 

Through The Strategic Coach program, I learned that successful entrepreneurs remain focused totally on their Unique Ability and delegate everything else.  These individuals delegate work to others who possess a Unique Ability in those areas.  There are people sitting around you today whose Unique Abilities differ from yours.  Tasks that drain your energy, fill the bucket for them.

If you are frustrated, bored and losing energy, it is imperative that you discover your natural strengths…your Unique Ability.  Socrates once said “Know thyself”.  Good luck!

For more ideas on how to break the commodity trap connect with Beyond Insurance on:

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Scott AddisThe author, Scott Addis is the President and CEO of The Addis Group and Addis Intellectual Capital, LLC (AIC). AIC is a coaching and consulting company whose purpose is to transform the process that insurance agents, brokers and carriers use when working with clients. Scott is recognized as an industry leader having been awarded the Inc. Magazine’s “Entrepreneur of the Year” Award as well as “25 Most Innovative Agents in America”. Scott can be reached or 610-945-1019.

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