Strengths Coaching Blog

Monday, April 3, 2017

Mastery Monday: Understanding Belief

By Albert L. Winseman, D.Min




Values. Ethics. Right and Wrong. Altruism.  If you have Belief in your Top Five, these are words that are very likely part of your vocabulary or their definitions seem to fit you “like a glove.”  People high in Belief are seen as dependable, because others know where they stand; they are driven to act on their values, and take a stand when a value is at stake. The most important aspect of life if one has strong Belief is staying true to one’s values. For Belief, work has to matter – it’s more than making widgets. My father once told me there are two ways to look at work: one way is to see the income you make from your job as the way you can make a difference in the world; the other way is to see your job as the way you make your difference in the world.  Those high in Belief talents more often than not see work in light of the second option.

In this installment of Compare and Contrast, I look at the differences and similarities between Belief and Maximizer, Significance, and Achiever.


Belief and Maximizer

One of the things that Belief and Maximizer have in common is a commitment to standards. But the idea of what constitutes those standards is one of the differentiators between Belief and Maximizer. Belief is driven by mission, purpose, integrity and values – those are the standards that Belief aspires to live up to.  Maximizer is driven by excellence, value, meeting a challenge, and focusing on developing talents into strengths. Excellence is the standard to which Maximizer aspires. Maximizer wants to build something great; Belief wants to do something purpose-driven. Maximizer inspires others to achieve excellence; Belief inspires others to achieve the mission.

Belief and Significance

These two themes rarely show up in the same individual’s Top Five, so when they do it’s an opportunity to explore a rather unique combination. Belief tends to say, “I am true to my values even when no one is watching;” Significance tends to say, “I will be true to my values because you never know when someone is watching.”   Belief is an inward push to be the best version of oneself; Significance is an outward pull to be the best version of oneself.  An important similarity between Belief and Significance is the desire to be involved in important, world-changing projects or initiatives – whether it be at work or in volunteering. Individuals strong in Belief want to be involved in those big projects because they align with their values; those strong in Significance want to be involved in those big projects because they want to make a difference and leave a legacy.

Belief and Achiever

Both Belief and Achiever are executing themes, so one of the things they have in common is a drive to get things done, to take action, to produce results. Achiever is the drive for daily productivity, and being busy and checking things off the list motivates those high in Achiever.  Belief, however, doesn’t have to be busy and productive every day; Belief is a more selective productivity. If a project or initiative aligns with the values of an individual strong in Belief, that person will work tirelessly to accomplish the goals and deliver great results. Alignment of values, purpose, and work are essential to those with Belief in their Top Five. While those high in Achiever can often feel great about any job they have as long as they are busy and productive, those high in Belief only feel good about themselves and the work they do if that work aligns with their mission and purpose in life.

Be sure to catch up on Season One and Season Two of Theme Thursday-Restorative to learn more!


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

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