Funnily enough, when I first started working with the Birkman Method (which is the tool at the heart of hoozyu), I used to skate rather fast over the Areas of Interest; I think I found them a bit too simple or “fluffy” in the corporate context I was addressing. Now I find them an endless source of fascination and enlightenment, at all levels. Today, let’s forget reading them as specific scores and instead half-close our eyes and focus on what the strata tell us. That’s right, let’s pretend your Areas of Interest are a nicely presented outcrop of sedimentary rock*; what are the layers telling us?

The question you need to ask yourself as you take this geological approach to your Interest scores is “am I seeing broad bands of colour; or are the colours all jumbled up”. Remember there is no “better or worse” here, just different. Here are the broad possibilities:

  • “I see four neat bands of colour”. In whatever order they come, the Blue scores are 3 in a row, the Red ones ditto, two Greens together and two Yellows likewise. Without underplaying the importance of the individual scores, I would focus first on the overarching message of the colours. Blue is about creative and strategic pursuits, Red about practical and hands-on ones, Green about interactive engagement with others and Yellow about system, order and keeping the show on the road. For you, focussing on the broad activity implications of whichever band comes highest (and avoiding the one which comes lowest as far as possible) is probably the key.
  • “I see one – or maybe two – bands of colour, the rest are mixed up”. Using the colour guide under the previous point, if the band is at the top, embrace it, if the band is at the bottom avoid it, and if in the middle simply look at it as something to engage when you need a change of scenery.
  • “I really can’t see any bands, what are you talking about?” Okay, relax and go back to looking at the specific scores. You are band-free!

Just to illustrate, if your scores go (from top to bottom) Outdoor, Mechanical, Scientific, Musical, Literary, Artistic, Social Service, Persuasive, Clerical, Numerical, then I would not get to hung up on the Outdoor score by itself (although getting Outdoors will still matter to you); give yourself every opportunity to do hands-on work (those high red scores), embrace your creative side for a break and try to avoid purely admin roles as much as possible. If on the other hand you go Outdoor, Persuasive, Clerical, Artistic,… then focus on the individual scores instead.

And we still haven’t mined out this rich vein of data – must talk about creative tension and score combinations next.

  • if you want one of the most readable (and one suspects, 99 Literary) introduction to earth sciences, try Marcia Bjornerud’s “Reading the Rocks”. Fantastic.