Suits week continues! Of course we have to profile Mike Ross–the pot-smoking kid, with a photographic memory, that fakes his way into becoming a lawyer. What’s not to love about Mike and the story setup? But why does Mike do what he does? Let’s look at his MDNA.
Mike Ross – IAF/UCD
Mike is an IAF primary. But he didn’t start as a UCD secondary at the beginning of his character arc (he was probably an SSA secondary in the beginning). Mike became a secondary UCD by hanging out with Harvey Specter (we did his profile yesterday). This is a great example of how social networks and experience impact our secondary MDNA gifts.
IAF (Intuitive Alignment & Fulfillment)
Mike is an emotional character. He follows his feelings a lot. His photographic memory is an extension of his IAF gift. The IAF sees every detail. He is sensitive and displays great empathy as a lawyer. The IAF is also very loyal to a small group of people and carries their burdens.
One of the biggest traps for an IAF is that they often feel the need to sacrifice themselves for the favor of others. This is what got Mike in trouble in the first place. He was always sacrificing to make his closest friend happy. That’s why he cheated for his buddy in school and ended up taking the fall. Even further, he ended up doing a drug deal that went bad which ended with stumbling upon Harvey Specter.
Just like an IAF, Mike has a hard time articulating his feelings. When he gets insecure, he either stuffs it in, or ends up blurting out all the wrong things. He is very afraid of losing the closest people he loves, which is represented by his relationship with fiancee Rachael.
Make no mistake, despite his emotional complexities (dysfunctions), he is a really good lawyer and decent human being. He makes people want to be on his side and connects with everybody. His passion for excellence sets him up for success. That is, when his feelings don’t betray him. But he’s getting better because he is balancing his secondary MDNA gift.
UCD (Unyielding Conviction & Design)
Because he is Harvey’s associate, Mike has picked up Harvey’s black and white ideologies. As the seasons of the show progressed, Mike became more blunt and unyielding in his convictions. This is a fantastic balance for an IAF. The problem here is that the UCD and IAF gift are on the opposite ends of the spectrum. This can cause quite the internal conflict as we see with the weight of Mike’s “fraud”. He knows it is wrong to fake being a lawyer, yet he passionately wants to be one and help people with the law. He is constantly looking for self fulfillment which is what all IAFs strive for.
If Mike’s character stays true to the IAF/UCD, look for his situation to become even more complex as the seasons progress.
So who is next? Ahh yes! Louis!
Fictional characters also can have MDNA profiles. Typically every great character is based upon somebody in real life, except the persona and core traits are amplified. This makes learning the principles of their MDNA profile much easier and a valuable exercise. Not to mention it can be fun and entertaining.