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My life as a PI Maverick

Ever seen the movie Top Gun? It’s a high-flying flick about Tom Cruise and his band of buddies as they soar through the sky at blazing speeds.

That movie’s kind of like my work day: fast, daring, and experimental, with its fair share of risks and rewards. Minus aviator glasses.

My name is Kayleigh, and I am a Maverick. Here at The Predictive Index, I’m a Social Media Specialist. I’m responsible for strategizing and creating content across PI’s social media channels, monitoring performance, and keeping our social communities engaged.

But more on myself in a bit. First, let’s talk about my behavioral profile.

My behavioral pattern

I took the PI Behavioral Assessment in 2023, back when I first applied to The Predictive Index.

The assessment reveals a person’s natural workplace behaviors according to four key drives:

  1. Dominance (A) – the drive to exert one’s influence on people or events
  2. Extraversion (B) – the drive for social interaction with other people
  3. Patience (C) – the drive for consistency and stability
  4. Formality (D) – the drive to conform to rules and structure

Here are my results:

Unfamiliar with PI? Our employees and clients refer to this graph as their Behavioral Pattern. Each letter maps back to one of the four drives: The farther right the letter, the higher that drive; the farther left, the lower it is. If the letter is right in the middle, it means that drive is “situational” and may lean in either direction depending on the context of the work.

All patterns are beautiful—and higher does not mean “better.” Instead, we use this behavioral data to understand how we’re different from (or similar to) our peers, so we can find new ways to communicate, collaborate, and support one another.

If you’re feeling a little lost in the science, no worries. With PI, every specific Behavioral Pattern maps back to one of 17 Reference Profiles. Think of your pattern as your home address, and your profile as your zip code! By understanding Reference Profiles, you can understand any colleague, manager, or direct report at a glance.

My Reference Profile is a Maverick.

A Maverick is an innovative, “outside the box” thinker who is undaunted by failure.

I find my Maverick description to be extremely accurate. I love working on projects that allow for plenty of creativity and innovation. Projects with too many guidelines have literally brought me to tears before (not a joke). Doing something the way it’s “supposed” to be done doesn’t make sense to me; I need to do it in a way I understand. My team recognizes this, and every single member goes out of their way to let me know it’s okay to run with my crazy ideas.

Embracing my superpowers

Social media is a quickly evolving space, and if you can’t keep up, you get left behind. Flexibility is critical for my role. If a new trend or priority arises, I need to drop everything I’m doing to recalibrate the entire plan. This creates a domino effect with a significant impact on strategy, so juggling and adapting to shifting needs is the difference between someone who thrives and someone who doesn’t in my role.

When brands try to look “professional,” sometimes that just translates to “boring.” I thrive on pushing the boundaries and trying new ideas. I tend to take a “better to ask for forgiveness than permission” approach when creating content. I like to keep things fresh and creative. Your brand can be fun and professional at the same time. You just have to innovate.

That’s not to say I work with a carte blanche. Innovating at a fast-paced company like PI involves its fair share of failure, and I often have to balance my riskier ideas with the needs of our Legal and Brand teams. Sometimes the gambit doesn’t pay off, but more often than not, it does.

Being goal-oriented in this role is huge. (Without goals, why do we even post?) At PI, we prioritize innovation, yes, but also results. People don’t always see the immediate value of social media work. But when I can prove I drive results directly with my job, I don’t need to say anything. The proof is in the numbers.

Understanding my caution areas

If there’s one thing I dread more than anything, it’s receiving an unexpected message saying a post went live with a typo. But can I really be blamed when one of my Reference Profile’s caution areas is a “limited attention to detail”? 

Although I excel at identifying the big picture, getting into the details can be challenging. I’m embarrassed to confess this, but there are times when I’ve even neglected to proofread my work. I’m confident in what I’ve done, so I assume it’s done correctly. However, acknowledging this caution area has prompted me to pause and reconsider before posting. In doing so, I’ve found that, more often than not, I catch a mistake or discover ways to enhance what’s there.

Another caution area associated with the Maverick profile? “May appear to be tough-minded.” I would like to clarify that it’s not a front—I truly am stubborn! Engaging in detailed work demands a considerable amount of effort on my part, and once I’ve invested that level of thought and considered all possibilities, I become reluctant to change my plan. I will change it, granted, but I need to understand why first. This can cause me to ask direct questions and challenge ideas, which isn’t always received well. 

Anticipating that reaction in advance helps me slow down and work through disagreements by creating a dialogue rather than firing off questions or comments that make sense to me, but might not to the other person. Oh, and I tend to resolve conflict on the spot—as a Maverick, there’s no guarantee I’ll follow up, so I like to be proactive!

How to work with a Maverick

I’m a remote employee and because I love to socialize, people often express concern that I might not have the right work format. However, I’ve found that socializing often gets in the way of my in-office work. I can’t focus and tend to prioritize talking over working. Being at home allows me to zero in and be way more productive.

When it comes to feedback, I love hearing it! However, I need to understand why the feedback is being given. Feedback with no reasoning leaves me frustrated—and that’s no fun.

How to manage a Maverick

Managing a Maverick requires a lot of trust. I am always on top of projects, but I’m not always sure how I want to complete them. I could abandon my strategy for a new idea at any point. I like to run with that work style, but sometimes I overdo it. Managers who create action items, checkpoints, or deadlines can be frustrating (at least at first), but they help my productivity a lot.

For check-ins, I like using the time to get on the same page, but I also like having time to chat and connect. If I don’t feel like my manager values me as a real person, I won’t feel like I can trust them to let me bring my authentic self to work. And if I can’t show up authentically, I’ll be miserable.

I used to have a manager who just didn’t get me. They needed me to have exact answers to every single one of their questions on the spot. I’m someone who needs to talk or think through something to find the best solution. Everything was strict, and I felt suffocated. It made work unbearable. 

At PI, my manager gives me the trust and autonomy I need to succeed. And it’s paying off! I love my job, and I’m proud of the work I produce each day.

Which Reference Profile are you?

Want to learn your own PI Reference Profile? Take the PI Behavioral Assessment and discover your natural behavioral strengths and caution areas. It’s free—and it takes just six minutes!


Kayleigh is PI's Social Media Specialist.

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