I am Divergent

I am Divergent

No, this is not a missive on the teeny bop dystopian novel turned film series.

Although I could do that because I've read all the books (ugh, that ending).

No, this is about how people think and behave, more specifically actually, about how I think and behave.

Last October I took the Emergenetics Profile Test with Robyn. The test was administered by my dad as he was in the process of becoming a certified trainer.

Emergenetics is a combination of characteristics that emerge from your life experiences, plus the genetics with which you were born. They claim to have scientifically determined that each individual’s temperament can be described in terms of three Behavioral Attributes and four Thinking Attributes.

I was reluctant to do it at first, as I've done the Meyers Briggs (I am INTP as of my last testing in 2013). But this profile seems to accurately describe me better and I like how it's layed out.

How The Emergenetics Test Works

It was developed by Drs. Geil Browning and Wendell Williams combining core principals of effective learning, communication styles, and team interaction.

There's a 100-item questionnaire that you take, with the questions being a product of extensive social research proven to reliably capture the major thinking and behavioral preferences people commonly use.

Read this article for more on the science behind the emergenetics profile test.

My Emergenetics Profile Results

insert emergenetics profile graphic

This tri-modal thinking profile is found in only 13% of people and is what they call Divergent. A little bit of all the factions if you will.

divergent gif

Behavioral Attributes Descriptions

(excerpts taken directly from my profile results)

Expressiveness | 86%

Because your level of Expressiveness is in the third third, you are probably talkative, outgoing, and lively. You may openly communicate affection for others, may easily start conversations with strangers, and may be comfortable attracting attention to yourself. Your facial expressions and gestures probably are animated, and you may be happy to share information about yourself. You can be quiet, but if you engage in long periods of quiet time, you may need to be reenergized by others. You generally learn through your interactions with others, and typically process your thoughts by talking. You are excellent at getting things going, although you may need to be careful about being overbearing.

Assertiveness| 92%

Because your level of Assertiveness is in the third third, you are probably determined, driving, and telling. You generally don’t mind handling uncertain situations, and you may enjoy being in charge. As a rule, you voice your opinions and concerns willingly. You probably prefer a fast pace and like to accomplish your goals in a timely manner. You may enjoy debating, and you tend to try to convince other people about the superiority of your point of view. When this happens, your voice may get louder. You can be direct, confrontational, and challenging.

Flexibility| 68%

Because your level of Flexibility is in the third third, you are probably affable, accommodating, and easygoing. You probably are patient with difficult people and even-tempered in most situations. You are generally congenial and easy to get along with. You usually are adaptable and open to suggestions from others, which generally makes you pleasant to work with. Most likely you are comfortable with ambiguity, and you may see the value of different points of view. Interruptions, transitions, and changes probably don’t bother you as much as people who are in the first third for Flexibility. Because you are always open to suggestion, you may need to be careful about appearing indecisive. At 68%, you are bordering on the second third of Flexibility, which cuts off at 66%. While technically your comfort level is in the third third, you are not always completely accommodating. Sometimes you pick a solution and stick with it.

Thinking Attributes Descriptions

My Preferred Thinking Attributes: Analytical, Social, and Conceptual

According to Emergenetics, My Motto is: “What do you think of this global idea?”

I have a tri-modal Profile, meaning I have three thinking preferences (each 23% or greater). The pie chart included at the beginning of this post illustrates my preferences for Analytical thinking (25%), Social thinking (36%), and Conceptual thinking (33%).

The Analytical/Social/Conceptual combination is found in 13% of the population at large.

Excerpt from my Profile Results:

You have one thinking preference (Analytical) from the “left brain” and two (Social and Conceptual) from the “right brain.” This gives your brain a slight bias for the intuitive and inspired over the rational and logical. You have two thinking preferences (Analytical and Conceptual) that are abstract and one (Social) that is concrete, giving theorizing and speculating a slight edge over your concern for details and practical matters.

When making decisions, you probably gather data, research, and information, then drop everything into your mind and see what conclusions arise. You are great at listening to others empathically.

You also excel at working out new solutions to move your company into the far future, although you are less interested in the details required to put your ideas into practice.

They say the gift of a tri-modal thinker is the ability to empathize with other ways of thinking. That people with this makeup can understand nearly anyone and they can be a catalyst and facilitator in a group and help promote understanding among the team members.

I will say, that is actually pretty darn accurate with my own self-assessment. I can assimilate the info, navigate the interpersonal dynamics, and decide and execute the directives.

The profile review goes on to say that the stress of having this Profile comes from being “Jack of all trades but master of none.” Tri-modal thinkers are not always able to sort out their thoughts or feelings about an issue, since to them at least, all sides of the issue make sense.

All I can say is, yep!

Summary Thoughts

I don't think all these things apply to me 100% accurately, but knowing that they are aiming for where I naturally tend to fit most of the time, then I'd say it's pretty accurate.

They do say that, "It is possible to “stretch” attributes like a rubber band when necessary, but operating outside your comfort level takes more energy and will tire you out more quickly.

They are preferences after all.

I think what surprised me the most is the low Structural scores. I actually consider myself pretty organized, sometimes borderline OCD, and I think others would describe me that way as well.

Interesting quick thought on that though, I bet if you ask current and former co-workers, they would say I'm pretty organized; but if you ask my Type A wife, she would probably say I'm kind of organized :).


I would encourage everyone to invest in a test like Emergenetics. It really does provide some guidance for both yourself personally, as well as others you communicate with on a regular basis.

And who knows, maybe you'll be Divergent too.

funny divergent gif

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