Sharpening the Saw

Like most people who endeavor to improve their skill sets, knowledge, and overall performance, I was confident that I was sharpening the correct tools needed for advancement. Further, in working with my sales team, I felt I had a well-honed view of where they were as individuals, and a firm handle on our sales team as a whole. This was until I met with Mark Lillis, one of the Certified Consultants of the Winslow Research and Development Institute.

In layman’s terms, the Winslow Assessment is a 200 question diagnostic tool that quantifies and qualifies an individual’s personality and work related traits. Individual traits are scored, and then like traits are grouped into four quadrants. These scores and an overall single score can then be “overlaid” and measured against the “backdrop” of different qualities needed in different positions. For example, in the sales profession scores would be compared to the different traits needed for success in different sales positions such as inside sales, outside sales, sales management, sales director, etc… Individual scores can be compared to many other professional “backdrops” as well.

Individual strengths, and more importantly individual weaknesses can be assessed, and processes to strengthen individual weaknesses can be implemented.

All of this is provided in color charts and graphs via email, and then individually briefed and debriefed either in person, or via conference call, by an expert at Winslow.

What is even more compelling is that the individual scores of a sales team can then be grouped, creating a group score, and from this combined data many interrelated group management issues can be seen, forecasted, and improved upon. Again, the application steps of how the group functions, and steps to improve group functionality can be formed.

Again, the group dynamic can then be charted and graphed, and briefed by a Winslow expert.


I must admit that as an individual, prior to Winslow I was working to improve my strengths not my weaknesses. And while I am proud to say that I was partially correct in my group assessment prior to Winslow, as a team leader, I am now much more effective in working with my team. Now we each, as individuals, understand because I understand more clearly how my weakness affect them.

While I am sure there are many personality and group work related testing vehicles out there, and this is NOT a paid commercial for Winslow Reports… sometimes an outside view is needed to create clarity.

Why waste time sharpening an already sharp knife, when it is your saw that needs sharpening?