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Determining Your Entrepreneur Style and Getting Past Your Business Blind Spots Are you a controller, innovator, nurturer, or 'systemizer?' Determining your brain type can help you recognize and address the blind spots holding you back from your true potential.

By Michael Cooper

entrepreneur daily

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Entrepreneurs are leaders who can see into the future with inspired vision, championing highly competent teams to make the seemingly impossible possible. That is the intent at least. There are times when you may feel overwhelmed, work harder instead of smarter and generally fear that you're doing it wrong. The truth is, whether you would like to admit it or not, entrepreneurs and executives have blind spots -- everyone has them.

Understanding and acknowledging your blind spots is the quickest way to transcend them and start seeing success. To determine what course of action you need to take, first, figure out your brain type.

You can identify your brain type by determining what motivates you, what fears rule you and which information you naturally seek. The below brain types are based on research done by William Moulton Marston in 1926, the DISC assessment and from my own experience working with and observing entrepreneurs over the past 15 years.

Related: The Untouchable Asset That Everybody Strives For

1. Controller + Managers
Motivated by: Status, control, results, looking good and making the right impression
Fears ruled by: Lack of control
Basic information needs: The what and when

2. Innovators + Influencers
Motivated by: Flexibility, blazing a trail, discovery, exploration and recognition
Fears ruled by: Lack of respect
Basic information needs: The what, when and why

3. Nurturers + Harmonizers
Motivated by: Being included, helping others, nurturing others and close relationships
Fears ruled by: Being excluded
Basic information needs: The what, when why and who

4. Systemizers + Analyzers
Motivated by: Preparation, accuracy, security
Fears ruled by: Being wrong
Basic information needs: The what, when, why, who, where and how

These brain types classify how we think and make decisions. On top of identifying what motivates and frightens us, they also identify how we store and recall information, what our response is to stress and conflict, and what we naturally avoid and ignore.

Each brain type has specific blind spots -- less than optimal habits built into our personal operating systems that cause us to ignore specific business requirements and responsibilities. Failing to recognize our blind spots can keep us from moving forward professionally.

Related: Here's How to Foster Leadership on All Levels

The good news is now that you have determined your brain type, you can recognize and address the blind spots holding you back from your true potential.

Controllers + Managers blind spots: Fixating on results, obsessing about time, making too many assumptions, needing to win (while needing others to lose) and taking control from others

How to see success:

  • Gain alignment on goals and structure
  • Tap into people's passions and talents and get out of their way
  • Allow for failure and learn from it
  • Stop competing and focus on serving customers' needs
  • Empower employees to make decisions (and mistakes)
  • Coach your employees to grow

Innovators + Influencers blind spots: Doing too much, avoiding structure, starting too many things, hiring for potential, underestimating and overpromising

How to see success:

  • Recognize and harness your gifts and talents
  • Develop the minimal structure that allows you to thrive
  • Partner with finishers to complete what you start
  • Hire for proof of competence
  • Estimate everything
  • Evaluate your work load before saying yes to anything
  • Restructure your business and personal boundaries to get your needs met

Nurturers + Harmonizers blind spots: Obsessing about relationships, caving in to pushy behavior, helping others to a fault, avoiding self-promotion and decision making

How to see success:

  • Focus on results
  • Neutralize pushy behavior by respecting your boundaries
  • Help others after you get your personal needs met
  • Value your contributions and go after your career goals
  • Develop criteria to help you make decisions

Systemizers + Analyzers blind spots: Managing time ineffectively, following rules to a fault, fearing intuition, analysis paralysis (perfectionism), avoiding emotion

How to see success:

  • Focus on deadlines and adjust work accordingly
  • Get alignment on priorities
  • Ask which rules can be broken
  • Make assumptions and state them clearly
  • Determine when things are "good enough" for others to evaluate/give feedback
  • Pay attention to the emotions around you and what they're telling you

By knowing your brain type and acknowledging your blind spots, you can begin moving towards your vision of success. Which entrepreneur brain type are you?

Related: Leading Your Team Down the Path of Change in 4 Steps

Michael Cooper

Founder of Innovators + Influencers

Michael O. Cooper equips right-brain entrepreneurs, creative professionals and agencies with the business mindset, strategies and skills to thrive in a constantly changing environment. He is the founder of InnovatorsandInfluencers.com and serves as executive coach, facilitator and trainer for design, software, public relations and communications firms, as well as TED Fellows. 

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