Birkman General Session – Part 1

What seems like another week, another conference. This week I’m in New Orleans for the Birkman Conference.I took a look at the schedule this morning. Prior to arriving, it didn’t seem like I’d have much interest in the sessions being offered. Luckily it seems that my interest has changed. Not sure why, but it has. I’m hoping that this conference provides some help in delivering Birkman trainings to employees with my full-time job, but also with potentially using it with some of my freelance clients.The Conference opened with a Welcome Session and General Session (done in 2 parts). Here are some thoughts for part 1. The Welcome session showed that there are over 300 registered attendees at the Conference, the largest Birkman Conference that they’ve ever had, with 16 different countries represented. of the things I learned is that Birkman has had annual conferences since 1991, and that some people have been certified for more than 20-25 years. Wow. Sharon Birkman Fink finished her intro, Amy Shepley took the stage to begin talking about some of the innovations. The first thing that she showed is a new video (1 of 4) that Birkman has created to help consultants reach/connect with clients/customers. The video was very intro-level to what the Birkman provides. I definitely think this could be helpful when marketing the Birkman, especially from a freelance perspective. From a full-time perspective, I think I’d still prefer to give an overview of the product rather than having a video do it for me. Maybe as a time filler if needed… then began giving a brief overview of Birkman Next, the upcoming changes to everything related to Birkman, including eLearning modules, webinars, user interface, reports. Essentially an overview of everything we’ll be learning about in the next 2 days when they start going into more detail. A few interesting points about Birkman Next:

  • All of the changes will be rolled out during 2017
  • Rollout will be a process, not a flipped switch
  • Clients will decide when they are ready to opt-in to the new information and reports

Amy mentioned that one of the reasons that these changes are coming about is because people pay to get certified but then after they leave, they don’t run reports/questionnaires for a while. Then when they go in, they get overwhelmed. “It’s very sad for many reasons.” are also unveiling a new color scheme based on the theme of a kaleidoscope, because people aren’t just 1 color, they are shades of colors. 

Birkman Components

All of the components are changing names, and being reduced down to 9 (from 11). Challenge and Freedom are being removed because they are based on attitude rather than behavioral. A new report is being released for attitude measurements and this is where Challenge and Freedom are being included in this new report.Key: <<old component>> –> <<new component>>

  1. Esteem –> Self-consciousness
  2. Acceptance –> Social energy
  3. Structure –> Insistence
  4. Advantage –> Incentives
  5. Authority –> Assertiveness
  6. Activity –> Physical energy
  7. Empathy –> Emotional energy
  8. Change –> Restlessness
  9. Thought –> Thought (why change what’s not broken?)

In addition to the changes in names and standard definitions, a new set of icons is being released to represent the (now) 9 components.I’ve never really thought about the order of the components, but apparently the order matters. So the new order is:

  1. Social energy
  2. Physical energy
  3. Emotional energy
  4. Self-Consciousness
  5. Assertiveness
  6. Insistence
  7. Incentives
  8. Change
  9. Thought

They decided to put the 3 energies together to get a quick snapshot of where a persons’ energy goes (physical, social, emotional). Then the sensitivity-based components (how they receive feedback). Then there is the control-based components (how does someone take control). It seems like the last 3 are just thrown in there.

Life Style Grid

The Life Style Grid has been renamed to the Birkman Map. They’ve also changed the horizontal axis to measure extrovert/introvert, rather than direct/indirect communication.

“Are you an introvert with extrovert tendencies or vice versa?”

The shades of colors on the LSG/Birkman Map indicates an intensely (green), moderately (green), or a blend of all colors.Birkman InterestsThe new Areas of Interest is now Birkman Interests. 

  • Clerical –> Administrative
  • Mechanical –> Technical

The page now has a lot more helpful information on each of the interests. I think that overall, this is going to make it much easier for each of respondents to understand the definitions for the Areas of Interest. The new layout now makes it easier to tell respondents to focus on the “top 2-4” and avoid the bottom “2.”

Job Families

Now a Career Exploration Report that allows a visualization to quickly identify most common relations.


Birkman on Demand is now Birkamn Insights. Information shown on Insights now provides information on where the results are pulled from (needs, interests, etc.). BoD is now rolled into 1 platform with Birkman Direct.Differences to Watch / Issues to Watch reports have been combined into Birkman Comparative Report. This is a report that I haven’t done anything with, but could be helpful for Local Companies or 2-3 individuals who have conflicts.Career Management Report is now the Career Exploration Report. 

Report Packages

  • Birkman Insights
  • Birkman Basics
  • Birkman Signature
  • Birkman Signature Suite

Birkman Insights and Basics does not require certification. The other 2 packages require certification. What this also means is that you can start working with a customer/client at a lower/cheaper level and increase their level based on interest.The line between Basics and Signature are the Components.

New Platform

Birkman Direct will be going away and myBirkman will be coming out. Some highlights

  • 1 universal login for all Birkman accounts
  • Access to all 4 packages in 1 platform
  • Upgrades can be self-service
  • New visual Report Catalog
  • Universal search feature
  • Ability to manage accounts, sub accounts, and groups
  • Optimized for mobile

Perspectives Report

4 measurements based around Emotional Intelligence (EQ). 

  • Individuality – Previously Freedom (usual)
  • Distinctiveness
  • Social Acuity – Previously Freedom (need)
  • Image Management – Previously Challenge

This may be one of the closest things that measures EQ that is out there currently.


  • Executive coaching
  • Leadership development
  • Increasing self-awareness
  • Identify blinds points/management barriers

Note to self: Free Perspectives webinar… Sept. 23 @12pm CSTI think that’s it for part 1… Now a break and on to part 2!

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