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“Houston, we have a problem.” That line from the movie Apollo 13 is a phrase that makes those with Restorative light up in anticipation. Restorative loves to solve problems. Finding a solution to the problem is always the goal, but the very activity of problem solving is energizing in and of itself to those high in Restorative. Those with Restorative in their Top Five love to pull the problem apart, examine it from all angles, find the root causes, understand all the aspects, and then find solutions. Some individuals strong in Restorative like to fix things – a broken appliance, restoring a vintage auto, restoring antique furniture, fixing a buggy computer. Others strong in Restorative like fixing systems and processes. Still others are drawn to “fixing” people – helping them understand and find solutions to problems they are facing in their personal or professional life and relationships. And for some high in Restorative, it doesn’t matter if it’s a thing, a system, or a person – they just like understanding and solving problems. In this installment of Compare and Contrast, I look at the similarities and differences between Restorative and Harmony, Input, and Analytical.
Restorative and Harmony There is a certain focus on getting things in working order that unite Restorative and Harmony -- the end result of the work of both Restorative and Harmony is the smooth functioning of a system, team, or relationship. But Restorative tends to be more focused on and adept at finding and understanding the root causes and possible solutions, whereas Harmony tends to be more focused on finding the areas of friction and reducing them or finding the areas of agreement and capitalizing on them. Harmony seeks to eliminate the waste of emotional energy; Restorative looks for the bugs in the system. Those with strong Restorative talents love finding solutions; those with strong Harmony talents love finding areas of agreement. One of their big differences lies in the tendency of Harmony to hope problems will go away, while Restorative jumps in to find solutions – knowing that ignoring the problem can very well make it worse. Restorative and Input Both those high in Restorative and those high in Input can ask a lot of questions. Their questions, however, tend to be of a different nature. Restorative asks questions about a problem, seeking to understand or get to the root of it so the problem can be solved. Input asks questions seeking more information – often times simply because it’s interesting. Yet both Restorative and Input have a helpfulness aspect to them. Restorative loves to provide help by finding solutions to problems, and Input loves to provide relevant and tangible tools that can be helpful. Restorative is a trouble-shooter; Input is a resource collector. Restorative and Analytical Restorative and Analytical can look remarkably similar. Both tend to ask a lot of questions, both examine and explore what is in front of them, and individuals high in Restorative as well as those high in Analytical can be seen as adept trouble-shooters and excellent problem solvers. But with their similarities, there are significant differences as well. Restorative is primarily an executing theme, while Analytical is primarily a thinking theme. Analytical tends to be perfectly satisfied with identifying the problem through an examination of the data and asking all the right questions – without having to actually carry out the steps; that can be left to someone else. But for those high in Restorative, the whole purpose of analyzing data and asking probing questions is so that they themselves can implement the steps and solve the problem.
Albert L. Winseman, D.Min., is a Senior Learning and Development Consultant at Gallup. Al brings deep expertise in employee and customer engagement, executive leadership and organizational dynamics to his consulting work with Gallup’s clients. He consults with senior leaders, executives and front-line managers to improve employee and customer engagement and to implement strategic initiatives that drive business growth.
Al's top 5 strengths are: Ideation | Futuristic | Maximizer | Strategic | Command. Registertoday for the 2017 CliftonStrengths Summit!