Monday, October 5, 2009

My Strengths

As I finish up the final four weeks to my BA in Organizational Leadership, we are working on further developing our strengths as individuals and leaders.  According to the survey based on Rath & Conchie's Strengths-Based Leadership, the following are my top five:
My Top 5 Strengths
  • Positivity
  • Communication
  • Input
  • Adaptability    
  • Woo

People who are especially talented in the Positivity theme have an enthusiasm that is contagious. They are upbeat and can get others excited about what they are going to do.

People who are especially talented in the Communication theme generally find it easy to put their thoughts into words. They are good conversationalists and presenters.

People who are especially talented in the Input theme have a craving to know more. Often they like to collect and archive all kinds of information.

People who are especially talented in the Adaptability theme prefer to “go with the flow.” They tend to be “now” people who take things as they come and discover the future one day at a time.

People who are especially talented in the Woo theme love the challenge of meeting new people and winning them over. They derive satisfaction from breaking the ice and making a connection with another person.

The premise behind the learning and discovery of leadership in this book is this:
"Chances are," write Rath and Conchie, "you will have many opportunities to lead during your own lifetime. As you will learn, the path to great leadership starts with a deep understanding of the strengths you bring to the table."
For those that know me, would you agree that my strengths lie in relationship management? I was not surprised at all, and this is a report based on how I answered 177 questions posed in the survey.  The four areas of potential fall into:  executing, influencing, relationship building, and strategic thinking.  Of all the areas, the only one that I had no strengths fall into were executing. 

According to the Gallup Management Journal, this new book destroys myths and "The research concluded that spending time building strengths was far more productive than logging countless hours shoring up weaknesses, and it created a virtual revolution in the way people think about their natural talents." This only validates what I've already assumed and sums up my attitude of life, I believe, in focusing on strengths and not weaknesses.  Think positive.  Glass half full (always).  Carpe diem. 

This book further reflects that people who report having a chance to use their strengths in the workplace are likely to reap the benefit of a "cumulative advantage" of having higher income, higher job satisfaction, and even better health over time.  As I find myself halfway to when retirement SHOULD be, I wonder if I'll ever fully reap these said benefits.  I can't complain, mind you, as life has been very good for me in the job-realm.  But will I ever find what I'm supposed to be doing with my talents and leadership potential?  It's as if I'm waiting for the acorn to fall from the sky and knock me over the head...  or a fortune cookie to explain (in seven words or less) what dream career will be laid out before me at the end of this rainbow of education.

Still no closer to the find the answer answer to
what I want to be when I grow up.

Heck, lately I've been asking myself if maybe I'm already there?

When it comes right down it... I am learning that I should continue to focus my strengths as a leader on my ability to influence and work a relationship.  I guess I'm still a work in progress.

Stay tuned.

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