My signature themes based on the StrengthFinder test are: a) Includer, b) Strategic, c) Competition, d) Ideation, and e) Empathy. Being an includer is crucial when one is either a part of a team or is leading one. Favoritism and biases towards a few members of the team are bound to bring down the morale of the rest which, in turn, has a negative impact on productivity levels. On the other hand, inclusion enables a team to grow. When team members don’t fear being judged for voicing their opinion, brainstorming and idea generation becomes easier. With divisions within the team minimized, cooperation is facilitated and work gets done in a simpler, faster manner. Placing equal importance on all members helps in building trust and boosts the overall efficiency of the team. As an includer is my most prominent strength, this reveals that I have the ability to manage and work with teams with minimal disputes, increasing employee morale and driving performance.
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My second theme is the strategic, which reveals that I am a problem solver, a pathfinder. Strategic planning and management are crucial in the modern day competitive markets and organizations seek a strategic mindset within every prospective as well as current employee. Strategies are not just devised at the top management levels. On the contrary, day to day operations and administration also requires constant strategizing in order to cope with a volatile and constantly changing work environment. Whether there is a glitch in the operation process that is decreasing efficiency or a loophole in HR policy that is leading to employee job dissatisfaction, a strategic mindset enables a person to identify key causes of problems which allows the strategist to formulate clear and effective solutions. Being a strategist gives me the ability to resolve issues swiftly so that the efficiency of my department or team is not negatively impacted. Further, as a strategist, I will be able to think of ways in which processes can be streamlined and improved to boost organizational performance.
The third theme identified through the test is Competition. I am a competitor by nature and a competitor is never content! This is not necessarily an evil as being discontent means that I am always seeking out ways to grow and develop. I need to constantly set targets, one higher than the other, and achieve them. I will always compare myself with those who are of a higher standing, and will strive to reach those heights. As a professional, I will always seek to improve myself in order to reach the next level in the organizational hierarchy. As a member of the organization, I will compare my team’s performance with those of rival companies and drive measures that will help us gain an edge over competition. Should I find myself in a situation where there is no one to compete with, I will compete with myself and keep setting one milestone to be achieved after another. Being competitive in nature reveals that I will be an employee whose performance never stagnates.
Ideation is my fourth strength. This reveals that I like to think ‘ out of the box’ and this is necessary for growth, development as well as problem solving. If the performance of a team has reached a glass ceiling or there is an issue that is not being resolved, it is obvious that the tried and tested method is not working. It is at these times that a creative thinking mind comes in handy! When other would be boggled about how to improve efficiencies and solve problems, I will be able to toggle ideas, view the situation from different perspectives and come up with solutions that are unique. Originality and ideation are traits that are highly desirable in a competitive industry and are sought after by organizations.
Finally, empathy is my fifth strength. Empathy is one of the key traits of a leader and a team player. In both these cases, it is necessary to understand those with whom one works. Being a good listener is not enough, one needs to understand other people’s perspectives and feelings. This strength allows me to have better people skills than most. Knowing the mindset of a person, I will be able to communicate with them in a manner that will influence them the most. This trait is crucial when you need the support and cooperation of your subordinates, peers or superiors. A good rapport with those around you makes for a better, more cooperative and efficient work environment.