The Instrument: The TotalSDI Suite of Assessments

We are difficult. Human beings are difficult. We’re difficult to ourselves, we’re difficult to each other. And we are mysteries to ourselves, we are mysteries to each other.

Sir Geoffrey William Hill

People Are Complex

While that’s obvious, it doesn’t change the fact that interacting with people is challenging. And at times, it can become downright difficult.

The TotalSDI suite of assessments helps individuals and teams develop the awareness and skills needed to build more effective personal and professional relationships.

TotalSDI helps people sustain relationships by understanding the underlying motivations of themselves and others under two conditions – when things are going well and when there is conflict.

This approach helps people recognize they are free to choose behaviors that accommodate their values, while also taking into account the values of others.

This dynamic and powerful way of looking at the motives that drive behaviors has broad applications for teams, organizations, individuals, and couples & families.

Click here to dig deeper into TotalSDI, or scroll on to learn more about our services.

Areas of Service


Recently, Google spent significant time and resources trying to learn what makes great teams. What they found is that “psychological safety” is the leading indicator of effective teams. But, without a shared language around motives and conflict, teams struggle to achieve that level of vulnerability. TotalSDI can become a framework for your team to grow together and achieve more.

Team services vary greatly, from a single meeting, to multiple meetings, to half-, full- and multi-day retreats.


As the quote above states, we often exist as mysteries to ourselves. We struggle to understand why we do the things we do and react the way we react to others and the world around us.

A one-on-one debrief of the TotalSDI suite of assessments can help move us from reacting haphazardly to responding with intention and purpose.

Individual services range from a single, one-hour debrief session, or a number of sessions to cover the material in much greater detail.


“Culture” is one of the hottest corporate buzzwords going. Everyone wants to work in a great culture. Employees often move from one company to another on the basis of culture. Leaders wring their hands over how to create great cultures. But culture is more than setting up a ping pong table and having beer in the office fridge.

If we think more broadly, we see that shared language is a primary building block of culture, and TotalSDI principles can become an organizational shared language for things that matter deeply to people. Providing a shared language for personality types, motives, communication styles, and conflict navigation radically improves an organization’s chances at having a great corporate culture.

Organizational services require significant planning for long-range success.

Couples & Families

Whether you’ve only been in a relationship for a few weeks, or you’ve been a family for decades, devoting time to understanding one another’s motives leads to greater intimacy, empathy, love, and appreciation.

While TotalSDI provides insight into motives when things are going well, it also explores our motives in conflict. Understanding our loved one’s Conflict Sequence can radically improve relationships by naming and giving voice and clarity to issues that often go unspoken.

Couples and family services range from a single, two-hour debrief session moving up into a number of sessions to cover the material in much greater detail. Private weekend retreats are another option, and occasional group retreats will be scheduled.

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