Saturday, August 1, 2009

Strengths Quest Saturday: Introduction


Ask me to assemble a piece of furniture by following, letter by letter, instructions in a 30 page manual?  Torture!  Depend on me to keep your company in business by selling enough widgets?  You and everyone you work with will be eating Ramen noodles for dinner.

But... 

ask me to gather input by reading, watching, interviewing, or collecting information, so I may turn what I've found into creative ideas, develop a focused strategy for presenting new topics each week, and deliver them to a thriving blog community?  What an achievement!

Sign me up now.

The beauty of StrengthsQuest is now I know why I derive so much pleasure from participating in Highlowaha.  My signature themes are:

Strategic
Focus
Ideation
Input
Achiever

Welcome to Week I of Highlowaha's StrengthsQuest Saturday's.  Each Saturday for the month of August, readers will gather at Highlowaha to share what we've learned; reflect on how we see it applying to all facets of our life; swap ideas and tips; and discuss how, when applied, the principles of StrengthsQuest can actually improve our performance. 

This is only our second attempt at a Book Club gathering and I have high hopes for the outcome.  I'll be happy if participants hear something new, better understand something old, or feel compelled to try something different.  

To assist in our learning , I have asked three experienced StrenghtsQuest users and trainers to weigh in.  Jessica B., Melissa M., and Marcy H., have each agreed to visit our community at least once each weekend.  They will read what we've posted, make suggestions and points of clarification, and ask thoughtful questions when appropriate.  These next few weeks will be like all of our most meaningful learning experiences.  The more we put into it, the more we will get out of it.  I will introduce you to them in a little more depth next week.  For this week, trust me when I tell you they are no slouches!  

We will start off today by asking each person to share his/her signature themes and to tell us your first reaction.  Did the descriptors seem accurate?  Were you surprised?  Go one step further and share an example of how you see yourself using one of your strengths.  

Don't have your book yet, but don't want to miss out on the fun?  Have no fear.  You can pick a book up at any bookstore (not used), use the code in the back of the book to take the on-line survey, get your results immediately, and be back here before dinner.

Hurry up.  We want your company.

Signing off until Monday...

23 comments:

Heather said...

My themes come as no surprise to anyone who knows me:

Communication
Competition
Adaptability
Includer
Woo

I LOVE talking to people, particularly in an attempt to win them over as a supporter. Give me a challenge to sell more ___ than those around me and you can be sure I'll rise to the challenge.

I can't wait to hear everyone else's themes!!!

Happy Saturday!

Chaotic said...

Connectedness
Relator
Arranger
Strategic
Input

I was quite surprised (not knowing anything about the book) at how accurate these seem to me. Ran them by some friends and they all agreed these were quite accurate for me. I have been called a "weaver of people" because I get ppl from different circles to get involved in one thing. This book says "You are considerate, caring, and accepting. Certain of the unity of humankind, you are a bridge builder for people of different cultures." I'll go for that!

Melanie said...

My themes are dead-on:
Consistency
Arranger
Developer
Connectedness
Harmony

At work, I use my arranger in coordinating programs, events, and managing others' schedules. At home, my consistency has been huge in getting Ellie on a routine. No mattr how crazy our lives are, she mantains some resemblance of a schedule and I believe that predictablity helps keep her a content little baby.

Kat said...

My themes are-
Connectedness
Individualization
Input
Responsibility
Deliberative

I can't say that I am very surprised by any of them. Maybe a little surprised at "deliberative". Responsibility describes me perfectly! Usually it is a strength, but sometimes it is my main weakness also.

Claudia said...

oooohhh, this is fun. I am gong to have to come back and look at these more closely. So much to think about.

Jess said...

Jessica B. checking in here. I love this. My strengths are:

Achiever
Empathy
Relator
Individualization
Input

And, they are all spot on! I will check back later to comment on more highlowahaers strengths.

Cheryl said...

My themes are:

Adaptability
Empathy
Positivity
Consistency
Developer

And yep, they fit perfectly.

This is fun. It's like getting an inside peek into how everyone works.

Katie K said...

My themes are:
Learner
Individualization
Achiever
Responsibility
Empathy

These are on spot on for me!!!

Back to reception decorating!

Peggy said...

Love, love the count down! The calendar, EXCELLENTA!!! woo hoo!!!

My strengths:
Input
Responsibility
Discipline
*Adaptability
Communication

I pretty much agree with them all except for the *.... go with the flow???? I think that is way wrong....mmmm.... I believe that I often show signs of wanting to aquire new knowledge!!!

Very cool to read everybodies cooments... I want to know more!!! :0)

Claudia said...

First of all, welcome Jess and thanks for plugging in today. Melissa and Marcy are cruising back in from vacation this weekend, so hopefully we'll see them before the weekend is over. If not... next week.

So much to say...

I think one of the major points StrengthsQuest makes is it is really the combination of your tip five themes, working in concert, that makes your contributions unique. So connectedness in Chaotic might look different than connectedness in Melanie.

So if I am looking at Peggy, for instance, I see her strengths playing our even in our HLA community. Input (the desire to know more) might be what initially drove her to our site -and even motivated her to participated in this activity. Discipline helps explain why we can almost always count on Peggy to post almost daily and to do it around the same time. Her responsibility theme helps explain why we can always count on Peggy to participate in the majority of our HLA shenanigans. She feels connected to our community and therefore a little "responsible" to contribute to community.

Her communication theme explains how she can be polite and tactful when her responsibility and discipline themes are wanting to know why the heck we have not finished something we committed to doing. Finally, what about that Adaptability?

Peggy, I know you said you don't see it, but maybe I'll take a crack at it. I have come to know you very much as a live and let live kind of woman. You yourself have said on many occasions that it is not in your nature to make plans too far in advance. It seems you do take one day at a time, making the most (adapting) of the precious present.

What IS interesting is thinking about how adaptability and discipline interface with one another. One seems go with the flow and the other seems to gravitate toward structure/routine.

Anyone want to take a crack at it? Peggy can you give us insight.

Also...

POINT: Spend some time this weekend thinking about how your themes interface with one another to make you unique.

It is interesting that Connectedness, Responsibility, and consistency, and Input show up in quite a few of your profiles.

Is it one of those themes that makes you want to visit HLA each day OR that makes so many of your loyal commenters. I might venture to say "yes."

Claudia said...

Typo city in my last post. Sorry.

Claudia said...

Jess, I was just looking at yours too.

Wow... your middle three seem to hang together really nicely - empathy, relator, and individualization. They all suggest you are a person who genuinely cares about others and is patient about understanding the perspective from which others might be coming.

Those combined with the Achiever and Input, makes you a great boss. Get informed, get things done, but be good to people all along the way.

Peggy said...

I see Dr. Beeny...as I'm laying on the couch... did you minor in psychology???

I wear my heart on my sleeve! As many have told me, my life is an open book... but then again, I've never claimed to be mysterious... just loyal and true!

Heather, whats Woo? as in wooing someone to love?

Chaotic.... I can see you as the defination of weaver to people... to me and what I've read on your blog... you seem to nuture and nature... the weaver seems like a basket maker...

Melanie... sorry, I don't know you that well... routine and predictability are great for babies... but I learned with my own two kids.... it's really okay to go a little 'crazy' and not stick to the schedule some times... if you don't make it home for a nap, or you eat dessert first... it's truly okay!!

Kat... love what you said... maybe our strengths can be our biggest weaknesses too. I think that's possible!

Oh Cheryl, positivity.... what a great strength!

The 'adapting' thing for me... when I read 'go with the flow'... if a situation isn't predictable and worms it's way out of my plan... there is no way that I'm easy going....no Que Sera Sera here... I'll have to figure that one out!

So is the first one on the list our main strength??

Peggy said...

Ooops! did I make you cringe... is it lying????

Claudia said...

Yes, Peggy we lie on a couch and lay an object on table. You caught yourself and that's what matters.

Jessica, Melissa, or Marcy... can you answer the question about whether the first theme is our greatest strength or if the top five are in no particular order.

Heather said...

1st theme is the greatest strength and down from there..

Peggy, WOO is winning others over...it can be winning them over to like you, to your way of thinking, whatever.

Peggy I like to think of my adaptability as making it work when the going gets rough...would that apply to you?

Peggy said...

Yikes! How horrible is my spelling!! No spell check on the comment section.... I apologize!
Nurture...

Okay Heather... in actually reading the Shared Theme Description for 'adaptability'...I often do take time to smell the flowers... I love life...I enjoy creating solutions... mind-numbing routines do bore me. I don't know where I got the "go with the flow" idea.

Now I also understand your Woo Heather....very few letters vs. Individualization :0)

Robin said...

My life is so in shambles. I bought this the day you posted it. It came in the mail. I left it in the car, still sealed up and now I can't find it. I'm lame this week. You also can't cheat and buy one online and now it's after 11 p.m. so I can't even run out and punish myself by purchasing another copy. :-( I'll have to play later.

Robin said...

Where there is a will there's a way:

Input
Individualization
Strategic
Significance
Activator

A few things stood out:

"Your definition of “recreational reading” probably differs from that of many people. "

So true. I read obstetrical texts and journals constantly, trying to analyze data.

Also saw where it said that I'm impatient - too true! (Sad but true and it's not a great trait when dealing with toddlers...)

Off to read the others and then to bed.

Jess said...

The first strength, as Heather said is your top strength, and then they are in order from there. The great thing about this assessment is that everyone has a little of all 34 themes in them somewhere. You may not think you have adaptability, but you do. It just may not be as strong as the other themes, especially those that make your top five. The point of strengths finder is not only to hone in on your top five strengths, but to also develop any theme that appeals to you. Positivity is the key, everything can be a strength if you work at it.

azlori said...

OK..couldn't find book until Sunday...sorry!
Empathy
Developer
Deliberative
Responsibility
Maximizer
While I don't think I would have guessed all of these to fit me when I read about them I can see myself in them a bit.

Claudia said...

I am glad so many of you joined us this weekend for the beginning of StrengthsQuest Saturdays.

Thanks to Jess who tuned in a couple of times and chimed in with helpful insights.

Remember to tune in next weekend when we will talk at length about you, your strengths, and your families.

It is sure to be beneficial and FUN.

Also... it's not to late to get a book, take the on-line survey, and tune in next week.

Mel said...

I love that everyone is getting into StrengthsQuest!

My top 5 are:
Positivity
Adaptability
Arranger
Achiever
Responsibility

I have been working with StrengthsQuest for a little over 2 years now and I’m continually impressed at the “ah ha” moments that can result from it. I don’t think any of us learned something new about ourselves by taking the StrengthsFinder, but for some of us, these “qualities” we always knew we possessed, were all of a sudden strengths, and things that set us apart from others. For example, I always knew I could lighten the mood in stressful situations, but I never consider it a strength. I love the positive psychology approach to StrengthsQuest! Then again, Positivity is my number 1 strength. :)

One thing that helped me when I first started learning about my Signature Themes was to look at the descriptions of my themes and highlight those statements that I felt fit me and cross out those that I felt didn’t. This helped me better understand my themes for myself, which is an important component of continuing to develop them.

Input is in my top 100 themes and I would be remiss if I didn’t share a couple of random facts with you (I love new information, but don’t always know what to do with it :).

-The chances someone has your same top 5, in any order, is 1 and 238,000.*

-The chances someone has your same top 5, in the same order, is 1 and 33,000,000.*

You are all very unique!

I look forward to learning more about all of you.

Melissa M.

*Based on 2007 figures.