Personal Hedgehog?

I recently came across a job posting where the company required a “personal hedgehog” description with a person’s resume when applying for a job.  I had not heard of this before, but it made me curious.

A personal hedgehog is a concept that comes from a business book by Jim Collins, Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t

Here is a great summary of what a personal hedgehog is…

Jim Collins argues that the best companies in each industry stand at the intersection of three crucial questions. They are:

  • What can we be the best in the world at?
  • What drives our economic engine?
  • What are we deeply passionate about?

The most successful companies are aligned on each of these three dimensions. This is the Hedgehog Concept.

As I was helping people to think about starting their own businesses or changing roles within their current organizations, I kept having them go through the Hedgehog exercise with their own marketable skills and passions.

That’s how I realized the Hedgehog Concept doesn’t just apply to business. The Hedgehog Concept applies to you personally.

Because we’re often unclear on what type of work makes us happy, we get stuck in analysis paralysis whenever we think about making a change.

It’s difficult to know where to start if you don’t know what you should be doing. What kind of work would you simultaneously be good at, make you fulfilled, and keep a roof over your head?

The answer to that important question can be found when you find your Personal Hedgehog.


To get a full overview of the concept, I recommend a great post by Tony Khuon at on the topic (

I think this would have a great impact on those people who might feel like they are stuck in life or for those teens who are just starting out and need a way to figure out what path to take.  What do you think?


  1. Comment Arrow

    Hey Trey, this is very interesting. I had no idea companies were asking for Personal Hedgehogs on applications! Do you happen to have a link to the job posting?

    Thanks for linking to my article. I appreciate the kind words.

  2. Trey Gourley September 13th

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    No problem, great post on your part!

    Infusionsoft is who I saw. Their remark about the personal hedgehog requirement is at the bottom of the page.


  3. Trey Gourley September 13th

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    Also, a quick google search found a pretty cool graphic representation is a person’s personal hedgehog.


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Trey Gourley

I was born-and-raised in Muncie, Indiana where I obtained a degree in Computer Science from Ball State University in 2005. Aside from my various web development activities, I enjoy music, playing the guitar, singing, exercising, reading, and relaxing in-front of the television. I still live here in Muncie with my wife, Jena, and Australian Shepherd, Mik Dundee.