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How Do You Say 'Success' in Strengths? By Shannon Mullen O'Keefe

As leaders grapple with how to build cultures of inclusion, using a common language based on strengths can be an effective tool.

Pivoting from divisive factors to 34 ways to describe what people naturally do best (in 33.4 million varieties of top five theme combinations) can help everyone get at the heart of what makes humans alike: the way we think, feel and behave.

Leaders can choose to have pockets of their teams explore their talents using a strengths-based approach like CliftonStrengths -- but to change a culture, it can't be that just a few experience it. It needs to be baked in, and everyone needs to take part.

Employees who agree that their organization "is committed to building the strengths of each associate" are also much likelier to agree that:

  • their organization's mission -- and therefore their job -- is important

  • they are supported in their development efforts

  • their opinions count

  • they have an opportunity to learn and grow at work

  • they can do what they do best every day

  • someone at work cares about them

  • they receive helpful feedback on how they are doing

Employees who know and use their strengths are six times as likely to be engaged at work, nearly 8% more productive in their role and much less likely to leave their company.

Business leaders who invest in building cultures where people are positioned to do what they do best every day see up to 19% increased sales, 29% increased profits, 59% fewer safety incidents and 72% lower turnover (in high-turnover organizations).

These outcomes sound pretty good -- but taking the step from knowing about a strengths-based culture to leading one requires a shift in how decisions are made. The "way things happen" in the workplace must be underpinned with an appreciation for what makes each employee unique. That starts with a baseline expectation that each person has an opportunity to discover what they do best. READ MORE

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