Episode 13 of "The JoyPowered™ Workspace Podcast," extends our popular "Utilizing the Clifton StrengthsFinder Assessment" episode and is eligible for one SHRM credit. JoDee and Susan discuss the assessment and why they're fans of it. They talk to Denise, a strengths coach, about strategically using your signature themes, the problem with "weakness fixing," and how StrengthsFinder can help teams.
JoDee's Strengths: Maximizer, Arranger, Postivity, Futuristic, Strategic
Susan's Strengths: WOO, Positivity, Maximizer, Significance, Individualization
Denise's Strengths: Achiever, Arranger, Learner, Connectedness, Responsibility
JoDee and Susan are fans of the StrengthsFinder® assessment, because it focuses on what you're good at, what energizes you and drives you to get things done and enjoy your life. This can often be counterintuitive for people, however; many of us were taught to focus on what we didn't do well so we could improve it. It's also seen as being a little less judgmental or threatening than many assessments, since instead of being dropped into a quadrant, the results are more personalized.
Contrary to what you might think, the last five strengths on your list of 34 aren't necessarily your biggest weaknesses; your top five can create trouble as well if you're not using them maturely, intentionally, or productively. When you are using your strengths in a positive way, statistics show that you'll have a higher quality of life. It's not just about you, either; knowing others' strengths can make you work better as a team.
While you may notice different strengths dominating in different situations, your Signature Strengths don't really change, though your top 10 may switch order over time. Focusing on your top five or ten talents and strengths rather than your weaknesses makes you stand out above the rest and helps you achieve excellence. Weakness-fixing is not a strategy for success. Our energies are much better spent when they're concentrated on what we're good at.
Gallup® groups Signature Strengths into four domains: Executing, Influencing, Strategic, and Relationship Building. Being dominant in a domain doesn't mean you can't do any of the other domains; it's just your most natural course of action. It's not necessarily important for an individual to be balanced across domains, but it is important for a team to be.
The creators of StrengthsFinder® encourage people to focus on their top five, though we naturally work out of our top ten strengths. They discourage getting the full list of 34 unless you're in a long-term coaching relationship; our natural tendency is to go to the bottom of the list and look at what we don't do well.
In this episode's listener mail, Steven in Kansas City wants to know how to incorporate StrengthsFinder® to improve his communication skills when Communication is not one of his strengths.