“Every human is, at the same time, like all other humans, like some other humans, and like no other humans”
~Kluckholn & Murray
Our experiences, our truths, are ours to own. We envision a world of work where each person’s unique experience – their histories, their ideas, their talents, their truths – are not only invited to join in, but enthusiastically celebrated. When the humanity is removed from work, the work becomes soul-less. For some, it becomes dangerous, unjust, and perpetuates a status quo that has too long been accepted as “just-is.”
A soul-less work place is no place for a human: not for humans, not for some humans, and not for one single human.
Our understanding of how systems, organizations, groups, partnerships, and individuals cultivate belonging has evolved, grown, and matured since we met in graduate school in 2007
Dr. Tim Johansson & Dr. Casey Lankow
At the time Tim was working at a small psychological assessment firm and Casey was making a career transition from teaching high school choir. Over the years they learned how they were very much like one another, somewhat like one another, and in other ways quite unlike each other. Yet, they remained committed – perhaps tacitly and unconsciously at first – to relating to each other from the Unequivocal Truth. No matter how difficult.
Shortly before Tim and Casey met, Tim’s parents had opened a residential home for seniors and had remarked to Tim about the difficulty they were having in sorting through the mountain of job applicants they were receiving for caregivers.
Tim developed a beta version of an assessment that he thought could be helpful in screening caregivers. With his brand of unbridled (perhaps scattered!) enthusiasm he showed Casey what he was working on. And with Casey’s brand of diplomatic curiosity and adventure he said “let’s do this!”
CareProfiler was born. No business plan, just pure determination and a willingness to stay curious, be patient, and get used to discomfort. And they did.
The first version of the ADW | Profile was referred to as WSQ-10 (Work Styles Questionnaire, measuring 10 personality traits) and was primarily used as a screening tool for entry-level direct care roles. As larger organizations started using the WSQ-10, they asked if CareProfiler had tools that were more aligned for hiring leaders and the WSQ-15 was born (adding 5 additional scales).
By 2012, over 500 healthcare organizations across the United States were using the WSQ-10 and WSQ-15 in their screening, interviewing, and selection processes – and Tim and Casey had completed their Master’s degrees and were two years into their doctoral studies. Many of the larger organizations that were utilizing the WSQ were asking for additional services: comprehensive executive assessment, 360 assessments, coaching, team development – and CareProfiler responded in each instance by developing a tool or service to meet the needs of its clients.
Over the next seven years CareProfiler organically grew its own consulting business and got busy. Tim’s father, an Organizational Psychologist himself, joined the group and focused on comprehensive executive assessments and executive coaching.
During this phase of growth, Aubree came on as an essential partner, leading client and member relations, and bringing organization and structure as CareProfiler continued to scale its services.
In 2018 they formed the Twin Cities Psychology Internship Consortium – a Pre-Doctoral internship program focused on training future psychologists in organizational and counseling psychology. They also built a community mental health program and learned valuable insights into how to cultivate belonging for those most marginalized.
As CareProfiler grew its team to over 15 practitioners, Tim, Casey, and Aubree began to reflect on the impact that identity development had on all facets of the work they were delivering. And their clients were noticing too.
With this focus on identity development, people felt something different happening. It wasn’t the typical workshop or training experience that most were used to. The content and process focused on being in the connection mindset, rather than self-protection. It gave people awareness around how their own insecurities and fear impacted decisions and behaviors in subtle yet profound ways. This work focused on deepening awareness of one’s impact and for those in power, it brought accountability to leveraging such power to help others bring their best selves.
This work ultimately centered around helping people develop a more secure identity. Indeed, Tim and Casey were bringing their education and training from counseling psychology into the world of work. That in-depth knowledge of how people come to be, how we grow, develop, change, and heal – the science and art behind real, lasting growth – was not only welcomed: it was necessary.
Shortly after completing their doctorates, Tim and Casey got to work on developing the next iteration of the WSQ-10 & 15. The in-depth work they were doing to help people grow and develop, to more consistently bring their best selves was demanding deeper insight. So, work began on creating WSQ-Discovery – a global measure of personality, measuring 9 families of personality – 120 scales in total, which launched in 2018, replacing the WSQ 10 & 15. This new, robust tool would require a greater degree of knowledge to fully leverage, so a Certification process was created.
The first WSQ-Discovery Certification was held in March of 2019. Six individuals – a combination of independent coaches, HR leaders, and learning and development practitioners – embarked on the inaugural seminar, which consisted of learning how to utilize the seven reports, provide individual feedback and facilitate team and group sessions.
Three more cohorts would be certified before the world came to a screeching halt in 2020. In fact, the last 3-day WSQ-Discovery Certification Seminar was to be held March 25-27 of 2020, a week after many states, along with Minnesota, instituted lock-down orders in an attempt to slow the transmission of COVID-19.
This forced pause gave Tim, Casey, and Aubree an opportunity to reflect on their journey of almost 15 years; to ask the questions “who are we” and “what matters to us?”. Reflecting on the feedback received from the consulting and coaching work that has been done throughout the years, and listening to the feedback from the people who had become Certified, one word consistently emerged: deeper.
Also, during this time, an event took place in Minneapolis that sparked a social awakening of a generation: the police killing of George Floyd. The world watched as an individual with power and privilege took the life of a black man, and an uprising followed. This human moment ignited many organizations across the world to take a serious look at their internal culture, and the calls for more robust Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) initiatives came. Tim and Casey took time to listen, to work to understand the stories of marginalized communities, and in particular what the experiences of the people were like at work. In listening, it became clear that at the center of this DEIB work is identity, which was the work that Tim and Casey had been doing all along. What the ADW | Profile, the Situational Identity Model, and Foundational Tenets provided was a framework for cultivating Belonging – in a deeper way.
A Deeper Way.
In July of 2020, CareProfiler officially became what it always had been: A Deeper Way. The WSQ-Discovery was renamed the ADW | Profile and a suite of A Deeper Way tools was developed into the ADW Belonging Program.
Are you interested in cultivating Belonging in a deeper way? If so, we invite you to join us for a preview event to learn more.