"For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Since we have gifts that differ from each according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly..." Romans 4-6a
Ever wonder how to hone your gifts and talents or how to help others do the same?
About 2 years ago I was introduced to the concept of Strengths as defined by the book
Now, Discover Your Strengths
by Marcus Buckingham & Donald O. Clifton. Here are the basics and what I ended up doing with them:
Take a profile test to determine your Top 5 Strengths (out of the 34 total)
Shape your work and family life so that 75% of your day is spent using your Top 5 Strengths
Help those around you understand this and live it out in their lives
Focus on people's Strengths in the workplace, to grow efficiency and job satisfaction
When I first heard this, took the test, and read the book, I first thought, "Here's another personality test that, while interesting and probably fairly accurate, will quickly fade away as just another self help experiment." But, I was so intrigued by how accurate the test was and with the insights it gave me on employees that I decided I would give it a year of earnest practice.
I can't go into all the relevant examples here but I will say that 2 years later it remains the best management tool that I have. One example: I recently hired a Marketing Specialist. We needed someone to help work flow through our department, managing all the little details associated with video, print, web, design projects. We decided they needed to be good with people, a driving desire to get things done, organized, and self starting and would enjoy working in a ministry environment.
It got down to 4 amazing candidates, I sent them the
book and 2 of them had a top 5 set of Strengths that where a perfect match to our needs. In the end we went with the candidate who had previous experience as a counselor here at Kanakuk. But it was a tough decision.
Mollye has been here now over 3 months and was the perfect fit. Her Top 5 Strengths are; Achiever, Discipline, Relator, Strategic, Belief. Seems like a small thing, but knowing you hired the right Strengths for the job makes a huge difference once they get in the trenches with you. Mollye enjoys her job, she's good at it, and focused on serving in her areas of strength.