Are You A Merchant?

Are you a Merchant?
Are you a Merchant?

Do you love helping people and always have great ideas?

Do you get energized being around others and inspiring them?

Have you ever felt like you didn’t fit in the corporate world?

Then you may be a Merchant in the Core Values Index (CVI) personality assessment. Click here to take the assessment.

The Importance of Your Personality Type

When you understand your greatest strengths and what energizes you most at work, you learn how to leverage that in every aspect of your life.

Your confidence increases and you know how to talk about yourself more effectively and what you bring to the table.

When read my CVI results, I felt understood for the first time. Even though I knew some of my strengths, to see them on paper was extremely validating.

It gave me the confidence to step into them and acknowledge that I am really good at those things.

Many of my clients have told me that it has helped them speak up at work, about what they will and won’t do, and has empowered them to be more discerning in job and client interviews.

Why should you read this if you’re not a Merchant?

Because you probably know someone who is one; it may be a family member, a work colleague, an employee or a client.

When you understand how someone is wired, you have more compassion for them, and know how to deal with them more effectively.

When I got certified in the CVI, my whole family took it. It was interesting to watch my kids listen to their results video. I could see them both sitting up taller when they heard about their strengths.

When my daughter Naomi discovered she was a Builder/Merchant, she learned she’s a leader. Having always been the smallest in her class, she never thought of herself that way. But after reading her results, she realized that she is a natural leader. And it boosted her confidence!


First, we will do an overview of Merchants, what their biggest challenges are, strategies to overcome their challenges and tips for working with them. Then we’ll review the three types: Merchant/Innovators, Merchant/Builders and Merchant/Bankers.

Who They Are

  • Merchants build relationships and are highly intuitive visionaries.
  • They see the big picture and possibilities for the future that others can’t and are good at motivating people toward opportunities.
  • They excel at selling and nurturing long term client relationships.
  • They’re good at creating and being open to new ideas, and aren’t afraid to take risks.
  • They are enthusiastic leaders who naturally attract people to them and like being in charge of others’ lives.
  • Being valued and recognized for their work is very important to them.
  • They love to talk and learn well in groups by exchanging ideas with others.
  • The corporate world can be challenging unless they have a lot of freedom to be creative or if they’re in a really positive work environment.

Three Types of Merchants

Let’s go over the three types of Merchants: Merchant/Innovators, Merchant/Builders, and Merchant/Bankers. See if you can identify anyone in your life who may be one of these types.


  • Many entrepreneurs are Merchant/Innovators because they love helping people and are highly creative.
  • They lead with vision combined with creative solutions and love to build teams and systems.
  • They can sell anything because they build long term relationships and understand their customers’ needs.
  • Merchant/innovators like appreciation and recognition for their humanity and solutions. They are charming and naturally attract people to them.
  • Merchant/innovators thrive in a positive team environment. They are excellent teachers and can create a motivating learning environment.
  • Good accountability partners for them are builders who will push them to “get it done,” and bankers who will vet their ideas for risk.

Biggest challenges of Merchant/Innovators:

  1. Saying no- They don’t like hurting people’s feelings or letting anyone down so they end up overcommitting and having no time for themselves. As a result, they will sacrifice their own well-being for people they love.
  2. Their emotions can easily influence them
  3. New ideas distract them- they want to move on to new projects instead of finishing ones they’ve started.
  4. They dislike doing detail-oriented work– They may put off this type of work to the last minute.

Strategies for Merchant/Innovators:

  1. Learn to say no before committing to things. Even telling someone “Let me think about that and get back to you” can save them from overcommitting.
  2. Create clear boundaries around their time. Schedule the most important things for their own self-care first and honor their calendar. Put their needs first and be self-considerate.
  3. Give themselves time before making big decisions- They can make hasty decisions, especially if they’re in a big inspiring group. They need a day to sleep on it before committing to something big.
  4. Schedule everything and honor their commitments. If it’s not scheduled, it won’t get done. With detail-oriented tasks, they may have a strong urge to put it off because they dislike that type of work.
  5. Hire help. As a small business owner, they should hire people to do detail-oriented work like a bookkeeper or a virtual assistant.

Strategies for Working with Merchant/Innovators:

  1. Give them deadlines. They will honor them because they don’t want to disappoint anyone.
  2. Establish clear working hours and how you want to communicate with them. Merchant/Innovators come up with ideas in the middle of the night and will want it started immediately. Create clear boundaries and expectations around your time and availability.
  3. Follow up on large projects. They will be excited in the beginning of a project, then they may fall off track. Have regular check-ins with them to make sure they stay on task. Use a platform like Trello to keep in contact with them regularly to update them on your progress, and you can assign them their tasks and deadlines as well.
  4. Show your appreciation for them. A kind word, email or a thank you will go a long way in building and maintaining your relationship with them.


  • Merchant/builders are high energy leaders who are highly capable of developing teams and getting people to take action.
  • They act on their instincts and have an incredible faith in their abilities to get things done.
  • Aligning their vision with taking action and building solid relationships makes them powerful. They generate bottom line results.
  • Merchant/builders need to have people around to share their vision with and people to direct. They are also great at teaching and delivering an inspiring learning environment.
  • They are high risk takers, are generally pretty confident and aren’t afraid to talk in front of crowds or be on video.
  • When you need someone who’s going to roll up their sleeves and get to work, a merchant/builder is the best person for the job.

Biggest challenges of Merchant/Builders:

  1. Working too hard- They don’t like saying no so they will do everything for everyone and can easily burn out.
  2. They can be very emotional- They can be really happy or easily upset and can have a hard time controlling or hiding their emotions.
  3. Being impatient and easily frustrated- When things take too long to finish or when they don’t see results for themselves quickly.
  4. Making time for themselves- Getting everything done can make them overlook their own health and well-being.

Strategies for Merchant/Builders:

  1. Set a clear start and finish time to their work day and stick to it. They should not work past their set times, unless it’s a true emergency. Other people’s urgent tasks shouldn’t sway them. They need to remember their priorities and learn to say no.
  2. Have patience when working with others, especially creatives like Innovator-Merchants and Merchant-Innovators. Lighten their expectations on completion times and respect other people’s boundaries around their personal time.
  3. Schedule their self-care time first, and honor their commitment to themselves. Prioritizing their own well-being is as important as getting the job done. Then they will show up as the best version of themselves which benefits them and everyone else in their lives.

Strategies for working with Merchant Builders:

  1. Don’t be late for deadlines. Be on time and communicate.
  2. If you make a mistake, own up to it and and fix the problem. Don’t make a bunch of excuses.
  3. Set clear boundaries around when you’re available. They can want things done immediately. Clearly establish your working hours from the start.


  • Merchant/bankers are highly visionary and have a good balance of taking risks and measuring how to protect against risk. They like having data and information for safety and to prevent losing their resources.
  • Team building, handling small details and following through are where they excel.
  • They provide detailed knowledge, especially in risky situations where follow-through is essential. 
  • Merchant/bankers are good at dreaming and heading toward a brighter future, and are constantly looking for ways to assure longevity and cash strength, which can make them successful entrepreneurs.
  •  They can keep a lot of balls in the air and can go after more opportunities and have something to show for it in the long haul.
  • When long-term relationships and long-term results are the desired outcome, a merchant/banker can provide a positive outcome.

Biggest challenges of Merchant/Bankers

  1. Being impatient- they always have great ideas that they want to implement right away and sometimes don’t want to wait
  2. Self-sabotaging their ideas- Sometimes they end up doubting their creative ideas and playing devil’s advocate against themselves
  3. Having mood swings- they can feel inspired and fired up one day and then quickly switch to being frustrated and indecisive

Strategies for Merchant/Bankers

  1. Find an accountability partner who’s an Innovator who you can bounce ideas off of
  2. Do a morning practice with affirmations
  3. Have a mastermind group with a good mix of people with different personality types

Strategies for working with Merchant Bankers

  1. Have open communication with them
  2. If you make a mistake, just own up to it and fix the problem. Don’t make excuses.
  3. Recognize their work and show your appreciation of them.
  4. Give them facts and data, and don’t take too long.


If you are a Merchant, your gift is building relationships and creating solutions and opportunities for the future.

You are a natural leader and attract others to you, and have the ability to inspire and motivate people to action.

Your challenges are putting yourself first and making time for yourself. Be sure and schedule time for your self-care every day first before anything else, and honor your calendar.

By understanding your greatest strengths and what inspires you most at work, you will start to live a life of purpose and creating the most value of your gifts with the world.

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