Why Enneagrams, Myers Briggs and other Personality Tests Had it Wrong: Karen Sherwood Shares Her Method For Unlocking Your Potential and Career Fulfillment

luisjorgerios ⚜️
5 min readFeb 25, 2023

The assessment of personalities using the Enneagram or the Myers Briggs can be a helpful tool in some cases, but what if there was a new way to incorporate these into the job market so that everyone on your team worked well together and really wanted to be in that job?

Personality tests have some key weaknesses such as generalizations or in a job capacity, the test may screen out candidates who are perfectly qualified for the position. The weaknesses that personality tests such as these present can be ignored in some cases, but in the job market it is vital to understand how a candidate would work for your team.

“What I constantly struggled with is confidence. I never felt good enough. I spent most of my life trying to fix myself. I tried every assessment tool and personality test I could get my hands on to try to figure out what was wrong with me. The Human Design System was the first system that showed me that there was nothing wrong with me — all I had to do was align myself to my unique career blueprint,” Karen Sherwood said. Sherwood began using this information in her own business and helped design the curriculum to train others to bring this information out into the business world. “What is remarkable about this assessment tool is that it is based on only three pieces of factual data. Not a bunch of subjective questions that are often difficult to answer.”

Finding The Perfect Fit

When Sherwood saw how effective the Human Design formula was in her own life, she knew that she needed to share it with others. For over a decade she has been using the formula to help others find true happiness in their career and life. “Imagine a workforce and a planet where everyone is doing what they love and are honored for their true unique gifts and talents, No more trying to fit inside of someone else’s box. When a leader knows how they are uniquely designed to lead and when they can nurture and empower each employee’s TRUE gifts and talents, everyone benefits. The leader benefits, the employees benefit and the business as a whole benefits. Who wouldn’t want to work in an environment where you are fully recognized and encouraged to utilize your natural gifts, strengths and talents doing what you love? ” Sherwood said.

Connecting Spirituality and Success

The result of her work is what she calls the BG5 Success Formula. This formula is the business application of the Human Design System created by Ra Uru Hu. The idea behind BG5 is to incorporate the human design systems into the business world by successfully lining up people with careers according to their interests and personalities through just three simple questions. Karen realized that this “spiritual design” was the key to creating career success. “With just three questions, someone can discover the perfect path to success in their life. It’s that simple.”

By aligning you to your life work, life purpose, and pointing out the reasons for conflict and resistance in your current position, Sherwood has helped individuals and organizations to reset their course for success with scary precision. Of course, now, everyone wants to know — what are these questions? Again, they are extremely simple. Unlike other tests where there is much room for error, these three questions focus on three simple facts. Your birth date, your birth location and your birth time.

Applying Sherwood’s Formula In Your Life/Business

Sherwood’s training is a bit different than others. Rather than overwhelming leaders with a one-size-fits-all system, she focuses on each person’s individual attributes and areas of weaknesses. “When you understand your design, you can make the right decisions for you to be successful.” This first starts with understanding who you are. “The first step is understanding who you are and how you best use your energy. For example, if you are an Initiator you are designed to get things started, but can burn yourself out if you try to do all the work yourself. Builders have the generative energy to get things done, but they must do what they love or their generative energy becomes degenerative. Advisors are designed to lead and guide others and Evaluators are designed to see the big picture and reflect back what is working and what is not working, but both types can struggle when they don’t know when enough is enough.” When each Career Type is utilizing their energy properly, everyone benefits.

Once you know that, you can start focusing on the second point of her training — your shadows. Shadows are any areas that serve as a distraction and cause frustration, bitterness, anger, or disappointment. “When you are operating from your shadows it is like you are delivering static and your communication becomes distorted. When you are aware of what throws you off track, you can quickly recognize it, so you can turn things around to get back on track.”

Shadows can cause resistance, misunderstandings, and pressure you to make unhealthy choices. When a leader knows their shadows, they can become better leaders by remaining true to who they are despite challenging circumstances. They can also better support those they lead by quickly recognizing the shadows in others so they can empower them to get back on track.

The final focus point BG5 offers in leadership training focuses on how you make your best decisions. When you think about it, our lives are determined by the decisions we make. Imagine knowing how to make the right decisions and the right time. “Contrary to popular belief the mind is the worst place to make decisions. You will learn how to trust your body intelligence to make decisions — whether it is trusting your gut, waiting for emotional clarity, or trusting your instinctive knowing for example.” We each have our own unique way we are designed to make decisions. As a leader you are trusted to make decisions on a daily basis that affect the lives of others. Having confidence in your decisions is key to your success.

About the Karen Sherwood

For over a decade, Karen has studied, taught and perfected what she calls the assessment tool of the future. Based on human design, she has used the BG5 Success Formula to help thousands of people from around the world to live a fulfilling and successful career based on their unique design. If you are interested in finding your perfect career path or helping to maximize the productivity and fulfillment of your own team, you can visit her website KarenSherwood.com for more information on living, working and leading based on your design.