Not just another assessment tool

July 28, 2011

I was introduced to an interesting tool that helps you discover what motivates you as a leader. I discovered this tool through an article that Gordon Young wrote in the Creating People Power newsletter. Immediately I researched the website and knew I was onto something powerful. I connected with both Gordon Young and Ed Kang, the co-founder of the tool.

When I first heard that there would be a seminar in Edmonton to introduce this tool, I was skeptical. I was not interested in paying an obnoxious fee to learn about yet another personality assessment tool. When I found out that the only fee would be the cost of the manual, and that all the proceeds were being donated to a social project in Nicaragua, I jumped at the chance to attend.

A small group of us were introduced to Ed Kang and Jordan Grant, from the Re:LIFE Group. Ed gave a detailed explanation of the events in his life that led him to co-found the Re:LIFE Group. Ed didn’t create this new company because he didn’t have anything else to do. Rather, his life has been filled with rags to riches entrepreneurship ventures. His list of the different types of jobs he has held shows a man that likes to experiment.

The “M_DNA Strategy” was devised by Ed and his partners to help people discover what motivates them as leaders. The “M_DNA Strategy” is an acronym for “Motivation, Discover, Network, Accelerate.” Their belief is that when a person’s purpose, passions, and potential are aligned, she/he is able to provide synchronized leadership. In the end, becoming a leader worth following.

As Ed explained in the seminar, we all have parts of all the leadership qualities within us. But a few stand out. After taking the M_DNA assessment, you have totals for each of the seven qualities. The quality that has the highest total is your “promise,” your purpose in life. The quality that has the second highest total is your “personality,” how you will achieve your promise.

The assessment tool is free and easy to complete. I completed mine on the website, while some of the other participants completed the hard copy available in the manual. My highest score showed that I am a “CGS,” Compelling Generosity and Stewardship. I liked the sound of that. My second highest score showed that I am a “MCF,” Merciful Compassion and Fulfillment. After feeling good about the titles I had achieved, I was waiting for the criticism to follow. After all, most personality tests tell you how great you are, only to tell you how horrible you can be.

This assessment was different. Instead of telling me how horrible I can be, this assessment simply pointed out areas that might be of concern. Areas that I needed to watch out for. I can handle that.

The full day seminar provided the small group of participants with the tools to understand the different leadership qualities. We learned that the “personality” quality (the second highest score) could change depending on life’s circumstances. The “promise” quality would always remain the same as it represents the very core of who we are. We were also introduced to how this tool could be used in corporations and businesses to help identify the best combination of people to achieve the required goal.

Not surprisingly, having individuals who are very similar is not the best way to create a vibrant team. Instead, diversity is important. Understanding the communication needs of each type is important and easy to do with the M_DNA Strategy tool. By understanding the communication needs of each person, the team leader can ensure that everyone has what they need to be involved and proactive on the team.

Understanding my communication needs helped me to understand why I become frustrated in many groups and committees. Realizing the communication needs of the different groups I had been involved with, helped me to understand why and how situations progressed as they did.

To find out your own M_DNA, go to: The free assessment tool is on the right hand side of the page. You can also find it at the bottom of the page.

Also on the right hand side of the page is the list of the different leadership profiles. By clicking on each one, you can find out brief details that describe that profile.  Each profile also has a video of Ed explaining that profile as well as a written description.

Ed and his partners have a vision to see a total of one million people use the M_DNA Strategy to synchronize their purpose, passion, and potential. And, considering the commitment that the team has towards its vision, I have no doubt that they will.


  1. Thank-you Martha for such a kind review of M_DNA. We look forward to engaging you more in the future of being part of our vision. Again, we look forward to seeing you in your transition achieve success and fulfillment by growing in resilience and character. You will have a great testimony to share with the world!

    1. Thanks, Ed! I appreciate your willingness to share this tool and to share your expertise in using it to connect people with their passions and purpose. I look forward to being able to introduce others to it as well.

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