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Friday, August 28, 2015

Building a Strengths Coaching Business from Scratch -- Gallup Called to Coach: Oscar Trimboli

On a recent Called to Coach we spoke with Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Oscar Trimboli.

Oscar built a successful career as a manager at Microsoft. One of his proudest achievements was the creation of Microsoft Protégé -- an experiential learning environment for students to gain insights and skills while working on real world projects. While at Microsoft, Oscar was promoted to a managerial position where he tailored development plans to each of his team members. A significant part of his new role involved discussing his team members’ potential and opportunities for growth. He was so successful at improving his team's productivity and engagement that his boss recommended that Oscar consider personal coaching as a business opportunity.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Three Secrets to Introducing Strengths to a New Audience Effectively

By: Torin Perez

As strengths coaches we live for the moments when we inspire someone about his or her own development. We see the a-ha moments happen, and we realize we’re doing exactly what we were meant to do with our professional lives. Yet, we can’t help but wonder, how can we ensure that more of our clients have more a-ha moments and more tangible insights that lead to real results in their lives and businesses?

 We know that the clients who see the best results are those who are ready and committed to make a change or grow in some way. This is true for the big company, the entrepreneur or the individual. Yet, our optimism, undying belief in human potential and living case studies of transformative work give us hope that change is also possible for those clients who may be less ready and committed at the given moment.

 So this leads me to three secrets to introducing strengths to new audiences effectively.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Focus -- Goals as Compass and Guide -- Theme Thursday Season 1

On a recent Theme Thursday live webcast, we discussed the Focus theme with Jim Harter, Ph.D., Gallup Chief Scientist of Workplace Management and Well-Being. Jim's top five strengths are Achiever, Focus, Learner, Relator and Futuristic.

People with strong Focus talents prioritize and then take action. They set goals. These goals serve as their compass, helping them determine priorities and make alterations when needed to get back on course. Their Focus is powerful because it forces them to filter; they instinctively evaluate each action before taking it to determine whether it will help them reach their goal. In the end, strong Focus talents push them to be efficient. They are extremely valuable team members because their single-mindedness enhances the speed and quality of their performance and keeps the team on track.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

[Significance] Recognition for Substantial and Powerful Contributions

On a recent Theme Thursday live webcast, we discussed the Significance theme with  John Liesveld, a morning show host on KLIN Radio in Lincoln, Nebraska.  John's top five strengths are Competition, Activator, Connectedness, Positivity and Significance.

People with strong Significance talents want others to see their worth. They want to be recognized, heard and valued. Particularly, they want to be known and appreciated for the unique strengths they bring. They seek to have an impact on people, groups and society as a whole. They want their contributions viewed as substantial, powerful and significant. They are motivated by their intense yearning to be recognized, and as a result, they keep reaching. Their Significance theme pulls them upward, away from the mediocre and toward the exceptional.

People with significance are lead by a desire to leave a legacy. They want to be seen and noticed for meaningful work. They are attracted to evidence-based work. People with strong significance can be described as a champion, a change agent or an advocate.

For John, significance is thinking about how other perceive his actions, almost to the point of obsession. This pushes him to act in a way that impacts others. John sees his desire to be recognized by others as his fuel for doing good in the world. That is, the recognition he receives from others is not the end result of his efforts. Indeed, John thinks so much about how his actions are affecting others that it has made him a better radio host. He is always searching for material and stories that will please his audience.

John also loves to be on a big stage. For instance, when John's father and former Gallup Learning and Development Senior Consultant, Curt Liesveld, passed away, John knew immediately that he wanted to speak at his father's funeral. John knew this because his father's inspirational message was so important and John wanted to share that message with others. John found it energizing to speak at his father's funeral because he knew the end result -- inspiring others -- was so important.

To hear more about Significance and how John uses it in his everyday life, watch the full video above or the short theme video below.

How do you use Significance in your everyday life? Share your thoughts on the Called to Coach Facebook page.
Pressed for time? We now have all of our Theme Thursday videos in short, easy-to-digest snippets in which Curt and other Gallup-Certified Strengths Coaches break down the nuances of each theme.

You can register for the next Theme Thursday and all upcoming Gallup Strengths Center webcasts at
Register for future webcasts.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Finding CliftonStrengths Overseas -- Called to Coach: Mandy Smith

On a recent Called to Coach we spoke with Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Mandy Smith.

At the beginning of her career, Mandy spent 12 years in leadership positions for her local government in Australia. She interacted daily with government employees and the members of the public that she served, often encountering people who struggled with low self-worth and feelings of despondency. Although Mandy tried to reassure these people that they were great, she found it difficult to communicate that message without the right language and tools to describe the unique qualities of each individual.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Strengths in the IT Industry and Education -- Gallup Called to Coach: Sandeep Guatam

On a recent Called to Coach we spoke with Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Sandeep Guatam.

Sandeep is an early adopter of the positive psychology movement and enjoys blogging on Psychology Today and Times of India about strengths and positive psychology. Although he did not have a background in psychology, his passion to learn is what led him to strengths. Indeed, Sandeep's number one strength is Learner. As his knowledge about strengths deepened, Sandeep felt a calling to use strengths in his day-to-day life.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Learning to Walk: Activate Your Talent

By: Jamie Librot

They say you have to learn to walk before you can run. This was not true for my oldest daughter Lucy. When she was a year old, we took her to the pediatrician because she still wasn’t walking. She even refused to crawl. The doctor assured us that Lucy was perfectly healthy and that she could still play basketball for Harvard one day, even if she didn’t walk in her first year of life. This calmed us temporarily, but then another month went by, and another, and she still had not taken her first step. She showed signs that she was able to walk. If we forced her to stand on her feet, her stance was strong. But she would quickly plop back down on the floor and raise her hands, a sign to be carried.

When she was almost 15 months old, Lucy was happily playing in the grass with a four-year-old when the older girl stood up and ran off to play. To our shock and amazement Lucy stood up and ran after her. My husband and I realized that Lucy could walk for months, she just chose not to. Once she realized that there was a social element to walking, she became interested in it.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Balconies and Basements: Perception is Reality

by Stosh D. Walsh

You’ve probably heard that statement dozens of times, applied to just as many concepts. But have you considered how it applies to strengths?

Perhaps you’ve heard of or facilitated a strengths activity called “Balconies and Basements.” This is a perception activity. Several years ago, I was facilitating a session with a group of leaders about “barrier labels” -- the negative perceptions people have of individual themes that prevent us from experiencing their full potential. Examples of this might include Futuristic being labeled as “head in the clouds” or Deliberative being labeled as a “wet blanket.” I wanted to drive home the point that talents, patterns of thoughts, feelings or behaviors, are neither positive nor negative. Rather, our perceptions of them in others and our application of our own strengths make them positive or negative. So, I asked a simple question after I’d asked folks to brainstorm the positive and negative labels: “Which one of these lists is reality?”

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Strengths Push Employees to the Next Level -- Gallup Called to Coach: Vicki Newell -- S3E12

On a recent Called to Coach we spoke with Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Vicki Newell.

Before her career in strengths, Vicki spent many years with 3M, a Fortune 500 company. Following her tenure at 3M, Vicki was a manager at a start-up company called Opal Orthodontics. It was there that she first encountered the Clifton StrengthsFinder. Now Vicki owns and operates Systemized Orthodontics Consulting Group, which provides comprehensive consulting services exclusively to orthodontists and orthodontic practice employees.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The 4E Process: Explore, Envision, Engage and Empower -- Gallup Called to Coach: Viya Chen

On a recent Called to Coach: Singapore Edition we spoke with Gallup-Certified Strengths Coach, Viya Chen.

Viya started her own coaching company about 10 years ago, initiating her "second career" after decades in the corporate world. She wanted to help people discover their strengths and lead them to using those strengths to accomplish their lifelong goals. Viya believes that you must know yourself before you can identify what you want out of life, and the Clifton StrengthsFinder is the perfect tool in that regard. The assessment provides an avenue to knowing yourself intimately because it reveals the direct links between your talent, value and productivity.

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