Leadership Training | Home Creating.... -  Leadership Training and Organizational Development
Creating... - Leadership Training | Home
What we offer
Leadership Training
Executive Coaching
Offsite Facilitation
Organizational Assessment
Intensive Group Work and Facilitation Training
Creating... - What's New
About Us
Newsletter: Into The Groan/Grown Zone
Our Reading Circle
Banjie Education Fund


What we are reading now
Join our Reading Circle
Recommended Reading


Color Your Future

Author: Taylor Hartman, Ph.D.
Copyright: ©1991, 1999
Publishers: Fireside, New York, N.Y.
Book Review by: Cathy Bernatt

Color Your Future

"The butterfly is the most 'human' of all insects, for the pain of its metamorphosis most closely resembles the pain experienced in human growth. If we know that the beautiful butterfly inside the cocoon is fighting to get out and we love it and help it by doing for it, we kill it. The struggle that it undergoes is what gives it the strength to live. Children, also, if we really love them, must be allowed to struggle, for only through the struggle of adolescence can they acquire the security of adulthood...loving is not 'doing for' but 'sharing with'."
Michael Desisto

I had the above quote engraved in a gold plaque that sits on my windowsill and which inspires me everyday. Michael Desisto, the founder of the Desisto Residential Schools for Emotionally Troubled Youth captures for me the essence of what conditions are necessary to develop our full potential as human beings. Taylor Hartman, in The Color Code, developed a personality profile that identifies one's core personality color which highlights the traits, strengths and limitations you were born with. In Color Your Future, he states in the preface that, "Like the caterpillar that was always born to become a butterfly, you were born to become charactered." (Hartman, p. 10) If The Color Code is about discovering what you were innately born to be (personality), then Color Your Future is about discovering what you were born to become (character). The caterpillar is our personality, the butterfly our character.

What we are reading now
Join our Reading Circle
Recommended Reading

By honoring our traits and strengths while humbly owning our limitations that we are born with, we can begin to stretch and incorporate strengths from the other personality types to become the best we can be. This is the journey of becoming charactered. Hartman defines character as "learned" gifts. The optimum motive for becoming charactered is service. Becoming trustworthy to serve requires us to be accountable for our innate strengths, limitations, and motives. To earn trust requires humility, courage, grace, and mastering the six steps of character.   They are:   1. Valuing yourself     2. Seek Universal Truths      3. Focus Commitments  4. Discover Balance  5. Having Clean Motives  and  6. Serving Others (Hartman, p. 29) Hartman also identifies four paths for life: the charactered path; the healthy path; the unhealthy path; and the pathological path. Our final life goal should be directed toward the charactered path which means honoring the strengths from our core personality while stretching to incorporate strengths from other personalities in order to compensate for our innate limitations. A person on a healthy path develops the strengths of their core personality while someone on an unhealthy path develops the limitation of their core personality. The worst case is someone on a pathological path, who develops negative traits of colors outside their core personality.

In Color Your Future, we complete the Hartman Character Profile. But unlike the Hartman Personality Profile which only we ourselves answer, there are four or five different people that complete the Character Profile: ourselves, a spouse or child, two friends and a work colleague. The top section of the Character profile, consists of 15 rows of 4 adjectives in columns labeled A, B, C, and D which highlight our strengths. The bottom section consists of 15 rows of adjectives in columns labeled, E, F, G, and H which highlight our limitations. The A column represents Red strengths while the E column represents A limitations and so on. The task is to highlight as many adjectives in each section which best describe the person, according to one's knowledge and experience of them. The results of the Character profile should validate your personality profile, in that probably your key limitations listed by yourself and others should be in your core color zone. The more charactered you are or have become will be reflected by how wide a range of strengths across A, B, C, D are chosen.

My self on self test showed that my strengths were well spread among all colors (Red-13; Blue-12; White-8; Yellow-12) and my limitations were heaviest in the Red/Blue areas (Red-7; Blue-3; White-0; Yellow-1. So according to my self-perception, I seemed to be on the charactered path. I was to see whether others verified my self-perception or were there gaps. I asked the President of a large multi-national corporation who is also a close friend to fill out a profile focused only on his experience with me professionally as I have done top management consulting work with his company. He highlighted a wide-range of adjectives describing strengths all across the color code. (Red-15; Blue-7; White-8; Yellow-8). And no limitations. He commented that his evaluation as a friend would have been a bit different. His wife is completing a profile on me as a friend. I am still awaiting three replies back.

Hartman beautifully describes the journey required to achieve a charactered path. "We must seek to understand people through their eyes and serve them in their color. To overcome the discomfort of speaking in another's native tongue, we must value ourselves and those with whom we speak. To do so requires a willingness to fail. We can not know how to speak another's language without practice. We will make mistakes. Learning to walk, we fall many times before establishing ourselves comfortably as "walkers." To discover trying life's highest meaning, we must keep trying; keep getting up; keep asking for humility to understand, courage to risk, and grace to endure the charactered path. (Hartman, p. 106)

Home | Site Map | What We Offer | Leadership Training | Leadership One -- Leadership Two -- Leadership Three -- Leadership Four | Executive Coaching | Offsite Facilitation | Organizational Assessment | Intensive Group Work and Facilitation Training | What's New | About Us | Newsletter | Our Reading Circle | Badjie Education Fund | Resources

For a needs assessment, contact us:

Creating... Head Office, Tokyo, Japan:
Baycourt Shibaura #193, 3-5-25 Shibaura, Minato-ku,
Tokyo 108-0023 | Tel: +81-3-6383-0444 | Fax: +81-3-6383-0444

Creating... North American contact:
Susan Ulmer, 3201 Old Hwy 221 South, Marion, North Carolina 28752
Tel: +1-828-317-1939
E-mail: contactus@creating.bz

© Creating... 2006, 2007, 2008