Are you developing others to be their best?
It starts with developing yourself. It starts with focusing on your strengths.
Focusing on your strengths is one of the best ways to develop your abilities and achieve your goals.
Gallup has found that people who develop their strengths are 6x as likely to be engaged in their jobs and 3x as likely to report having an excellent quality of life. That is, strengths-based development unlocks true success at work and in life.
So, what are your strengths?
Any activity or task that you do where you feel strong is an indication that you are playing to your strengths. There are also signs that guide us towards tasks and activities that have the potential of us discovering our strengths.
Strength is defined as an activity that you can produce near-perfect results consistently. We feel strong with those activities because our talents are being utilized.
Our talents are our recurring patterns of thoughts, feelings and behavior that are productively applied.
For example, as a manager with a talent for learning and developing others, how can you apply them productively? To begin with, the manager can start investing in the talents to manage the team’s development. Perhaps, invest in learning coaching skills and learn about what make people unique beings. At the same time, the manager can learn about the blind spots of the learner and developer talents. This will ensure he/she can remain productive as a manager.
How do you discover your talents?
A great tool to use is the Clifton Strengths Assessment to discover your dominant innate talents. The report reveals your unique talent DNA.
Your top talent themes are a combination that’s unique to you. But you may also find that you possess common (or rare) pairings and combinations of talent themes. Identifying and understanding these patterns can help you develop, learn and grow for the future.
The 34 Talent Themes Categories
The 34 talent themes can be categorized into the four domains of potential: Executing, Influencing, Strategic Thinking and Relationship Building.
In addition to these four domains, you may have noticed that several of your top themes are similar. For instance, people who are naturally team-oriented may have high Connectedness, Includer and Arranger.
Reflecting on the similarities and differences in your talent themes can help you better understand how you work best, what you’re great at and where you tend to struggle.
The goal is to experience “aha!” moments about how you approach life, relationships and work.
Grouping Themes by Their Shared Talents
Each theme is unique. Yet multiple themes can share certain characteristics. Here are a few talent groupings (i.e., Packages) that show how certain themes work together.
Anticipation and Imagination:
You might possess high levels of these themes if you naturally imagine possibilities, foresee challenges and anticipate what lies ahead.
Some themes are all about perspective, such as: global perspective, forward-mindedness, introspection and focusing on individuals.
If you’re a social butterfly by nature, you likely possess high levels of multiple “social” themes that make you more accepting, dependable and relatable.
Several themes are related because of their emphasis on efficiency. These themes go together for fast-paced people who naturally work quickly.
Intentionally use your Talents for growth:
The path to personal growth and development is the same for everyone. You can use the “ICE” model to remember and apply the process:
Identify: Understand and Acknowledge your unique talents
Capture: Celebrate and Appreciate Own your talent DNA
Execute: Intentionally Develop what you do best.
Ask yourself: How are your top themes similar and different? How can you harness those similarities and differences to achieve your goals?
Remember, your combination of talent themes is unique to you. And no matter what talents you have, you can improve your effectiveness by exploring how your talents work together and leaning into what you do best.
Here are four steps you can take now to spark strengths-based growth:
1. Learn what makes you unique.
The first step to personal and professional development is self-awareness. What are the themes that make you uniquely you?
2. Create strengths-based goals:
Once you know your talents, consider your daily tasks, conversations and routines. What can you do to develop your strengths in those meaningful moments?
Choose a few areas you’d like to improve: such as your habits or your work-life balance. Then, decide which talents you can use to accomplish each of those things. Consider how patterns in your talents can help you fulfill your goals more effectively.
For example, you might have a goal to gain a new skill. If you possess several “social” strengths, you might pursue mentorship or recruit several colleagues to take a class together. By understanding the patterns in your talents, you can find new ways to accomplish the seemingly impossible.
3. Reframe your weaknesses.:
The best way to achieve greatness isn’t to ignore your weaknesses. Rather, you should acknowledge your weaknesses, understand them and then reframe them by considering which of your top talents you can use to compensate. Ask yourself: Which of my top talents can help me succeed despite my weaknesses?
Another great strategy is complementary partnerships: By relying on others, you can manage your weaknesses effectively. For example, if talents in the “perspective” package are at the bottom of your full 34 profile, you might connect with a forward-thinking individual who possesses high levels of these strengths. Through that partnership, you can discover new ways of thinking.
4. Use these strengths-focused resources. :
You can become truly unstoppable by pursuing a lifetime of development with proven strengths-based development resources. From the Strength Workshop at ICE to formal Programs such as Discover Your Potential or the Associate Coach Training Program.
The bottom line is that strengths-based development is all about what you’re paying attention to. When your mind is on your strengths, there’s no limit to what you can accomplish.
Meet the Founder
Taymour Miri is an ICF master coach and a Gallup certified strengths coach with 20 years of coaching experience and recently, one of only 136 coaches world wide to be given an Advanced certification in Team coaching by ICF. Taymour has trained over 1500 professional coaches across five continents at all three levels of ICF credentialing (Associate, Professional and Master). He is the managing director of MTMI, a U.K registered company, partnering with organizations to elevate their performance by maximizing their strengths.