Are You Empowering “Builders” to Unlock Economic Energy?

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What is a “Builder”? A Builder, as defined by Gallup, is one who creates economic energy where none previously existed. Builders start new ventures or create something within an existing organization: a business line, product or service, strategic initiative, or a new team. These creations all come with the goal of driving the new or existing organization forward and creating a fresh economic reality.

We have Builders all around us, but are we supporting them and empowering them effectively to harness their talents? Furthermore, do we all truly engage in the role of “Builder” to develop, grow, and sustain organizations?

As our world changes, having a more entrepreneurial culture and being able to create organic growth and seize opportunities are critical competitive advantages in business.This edge helps start-ups beat the odds to survive and succeed. It helps small and medium sized businesses retain their independence and sustain profitability, and it helps large businesses continue to be relevant. We need Builders to embrace building, create positive change, and not just work "in" the business, but “on” the business as well!

To identify what characteristics and traits are most important for building, Gallup studied 4,000 successful entrepreneurs over five years. Their research discovered 10 specific talents required for building (also known as the Builder Profile 10™):

  1. Confidence
  2. Knowledge
  3. Delegator
  4. Profitability
  5. Determination
  6. Relationship
  7. Disruptor
  8. Risk
  9. Independence
  10. Selling

Interestingly, we all have these talents that are distinctly measurable and correlate to economic outcomes. In the book Born to Build by Jim Clifton and Sangeeta Badal, some of these correlations are shared. Here are a few examples of dominant traits of entrepreneurs and the findings:

  • Those with "Risk" talent are 5x more likely to have a business with $1 million in revenue.
  • Those with "Profitability" talent are 4x more likely to plan to grow their business significantly.
  • Those with "Determination" talent are 3.5x more likely to plan to increase their employee base by more than 5%.
  • Those with "Disruptor" talent are 3x more likely to file for or receive a patent.
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The research also shows that each of us approaches building through lenses with varying intensities in each talent, and, when building, we all lead with a different role: Rainmaker, Conductor, or Expert.

Discovering our specific building talents and the unique way we tend to lead not only helps us know how to develop and direct others toward what we are building, it also helps us ensure we are building the right team around us to succeed. Thus, if you are investing in someone to build, knowing and helping them understand how to maximize their Builder talents is a powerful way to set them up for greater success.

Beyond raw talent, Builders who are equipped with a thoughtful process can channel their talents in a highly productive way. Assessment and enhancing self-awareness of Builder talents are the first steps of the process, but applying those talents to the other steps (recognizing opportunities, generating customers or users, activating the ideas/services/products, and building the team) is where the true value is created.

Every company has Builders. They might be the founder or founding partners, or anyone that has been asked to build something or lead a division/practice in an existing organization. If we aren’t harnessing and developing the natural talents they bring to building, we are leaving a critical aspect of economic energy to chance.

Help yourself and your Builders. Start to assess Builder talents by using the BP10™, and work with your team to discover, develop, and direct those talents to build your organization for the future.