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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Having the Time of Your Life -- Every Day

By Kyle Robinson, Director of Campus Engagement, Gallup

“What was the best time of your life?” Sitting across the living room from my 89-year-old grandmother, I expected her response to be a story of a joyful childhood, marrying her sweetheart right after the war, the birth of my father, or becoming (thanks to me) a grandmother for the first time. Rather, her response caught me completely by surprise: “Working as a teller at the bank was the best time of my life … I so loved that job!”

What is it about work that holds the potential to impact us so significantly? Recent Gallup studies have revealed the devastating effect of sustained unemployment as well as the great impact that a good job can have on our entire well-being. Work possesses the concurrent capacity to give us great excitement, encouragement, and engagement -- or it can give us dread, despair, and disengagement. The difference? Using our strengths.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Southeast Asia Edition -- Gallup Called to Coach: Kim Pong

On Sunday, Oct. 13, Called to Coach featured a webinar with strengths coach Kim Pong Lim. Kim Pong is one of the first Gallup-certified strengths coaches in Singapore, and is among Asia’s most accomplished practitioners of strengths-based development and talent management strategies.

In 2009, Kim Pong discovered his strengths while he was seeking purpose and direction in his life. For the first time in his life, StrengthsFinder gave him a language with which he was able to describe himself. Kim Pong wanted to help others experience this same life-changing realization, so he quickly found himself on the path to strengths coaching.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Gallup Called to Coach: Mike and Tessa Dodge -- S1E10

Last week’s Called to Coach featured two fantastic strengths coaches from New Zealand: Mike and Tessa Dodge.

When Mike first learned about strengths, he immediately knew they could give him a language to help people become better by correcting their own misunderstandings about themselves.

Tessa, on the other hand, was skeptical when she first heard about strengths. Because of her prominent Individualization strength, it seemed to her that the strengths “language” was a way of labeling people. But it didn’t take her long to change her mind.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Building a Strengths-Based Campus

By Ken Barr Jr.

KVCC's Student Strengths Ambassadors
College students around the world, surrounded by piles of textbooks and homework, are continuously struggling to figure out and validate what they want to do after graduation. Many wonder what it would be like if someone could just tell them what to do.

Students at Kalamazoo Valley Community College (KVCC) have the unique opportunity to have someone partner with them to help solve this dilemma. The integration of StrengthsQuest within the curriculum at KVCC has given students the resources for strengths-based personal development, which they can incorporate into their education and future careers.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Recap - Gallup Called to Coach: Roy West and Brendan Suhr - S1E9

Last week’s Called to Coach webinar featured two successful strengths coaches: Brendan Suhr and Roy West. Suhr credits his strengths knowledge and passion to West, who is among the world’s most accomplished practitioners of strengths-based development.

Not only is Suhr a champion strengths coach, he is a well-decorated college and professional basketball coach as well. Suhr first met West when he attended one of West’s seminars, calling the experience “religious and life-changing.”

There has to be someone who can take you where you can’t take yourself.
Even those who are great at what they do need a coach. Whether it’s an athlete like Michael Jordan or a basketball coach like Suhr, there is always someone who can help you discover and leverage your greatest talents.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Complementary Partnership Found in Nature:
The Pistol Shrimp and Goby Fish

By Jamie Librot, Gallup
Strengths science teaches us that every human being has powerful, natural talents in a few areas, but that no one is good at everything. In addition to providing ways for us to harness our strengths, Gallup has also created different techniques to ensure that our non-talents do not become weaknesses. One technique is to develop complementary partnerships -- teaming up with people whose strengths are different from our own. In fact, in nature it can be a matter of life or death.
In the plant and animal world, there are multiple examples of symbiotic relationships where two species rely on each other for survival. My favorite example is the pistol shrimp and the goby fish.

Despite its minuscule size of only 3-5 cm, the pistol shrimp can use its claw to create one of the loudest sounds in the ocean. The sound frightens away enemies who feel the powerful sound waves and believe an enormous predator is near. The sound waves are so potent, they can even kill small fish. Although the pistol shrimp is endowed with a life-saving gift, it also has an unfortunate disability -- the pistol shrimp is blind. Swimming through life alone, this shrimp would likely become extinct because predators would easily take advantage of the shrimp’s weakness.

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