The development of Winning Profile began over 30 years ago when Dr. Gary F. Russell constructed his doctoral thesis. It was his view then, as it is now, that the concept of motivation derived from other psychologies was backwards.

Motivation has as its root the word “motive,” a reason for an action. It was believed that if a person wanted another person to do something, he had to motivate him. In other words, the energy had to come from an external force outside the person.

Russell’s theories were different. He believed that the energy for change was internal. Therefore, he hypothesized that to motivate a person, a way had to be found to turn that energy on and direct it. Thus, the concept of activation was created.

Russell created an interactive model called SRO (Sender, Receiver, Outcome) to demonstrate this idea of activation. Within any interaction between two or more people, there is always a Sender of information, a Receiver of information and Outcomes that occur from that interaction. Russell felt that too often in interactions the emphasis had wrongly been placed on the Sender getting his information out. His SRO model places emphasis on the Receiver, as represented by the larger “R” below.


When emphasis in an interaction is not placed on the Receiver, the results can be disastrous:

America created a penal system where we can’t build prisons fast enough, a welfare system that has grown, not shrunk, and a drop-out rate of students in our educational system that is at an all time-high. It took Russell almost 20 years to validate his premise of activation and SRO and thus created his model for interaction and alignment.