Quite a few years ago now, one of my friends introduced me to the Clifton StrengthsFinder. It’s an online assessment offered by a company called Gallup. They’re an evidence-based, performance management company who are interested in what makes people productive and effective in life. They research everything about the modern workplace – and wider life too.
Their approach is based on positive psychology and the idea that spending time working on our strengths produces exponentially greater engagement at work, collaboration, well-being, and adds directly to the bottom line.
It contrasts with the approach at schools which focuses on identifying and improving the weaknesses rather than intentionally playing to strengths.
When I did the test, I initially didn’t think about it much. But the report was so detailed and insightful, I started digging into it more deeply. I also started to see my strengths everywhere.
I also started to feel good about myself.
Since then, my wife, sister, her boyfriend, my brother-in-law, a team at work, and fellow Psychology teacher have all completed their Top Five.
It has helped me understand how I do things, and given me tools to explain my approaches to dealing with life. For example, when applying for a promotion at work, I was able to articulate what I could bring to the position. I feel it directly contributed to me getting the role.
It’s also made a difference in my marriage. I used to get so annoyed when she changed her mind all the time. We’ve seen how I like to think, then talk. Whereas she thinks *by* talking. So I’ve learned to ask questions and listen, and let a solution evolve. For example, when choosing a holiday I ask, “What do you want from your holiday?” As she talks, I listen and think. This year we’re planning another driving holiday…
So, this first collage for May is an expression of my Top Five Strengths from Gallup’s Clifton StrengthsFinder.
I even set it as the background on my phone as a reminder of my specific talents.
PS If you’ve got any comments, suggestions or questions, please leave them in the comments!