Strengths Coaching Blog

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Developer: Discussing a Language of Progress- Theme Thursday Season 3

On this Theme Thursday Season Three webcast, Jim Collison, Gallup's Director of Talent Sourcing, and Maika Leibbrandt, Senior Workplace Consultant, talk about Developer with guest Nicki Luther.





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You see the potential in others. Very often, in fact, potential is all you see. In your view, no individual is fully formed. On the contrary, each individual is a work in progress, alive with possibilities. And you are drawn toward people for this very reason. When you interact with others, your goal is to help them experience success. You look for ways to challenge them. You devise interesting experiences that can stretch them and help them grow. And all the while, you are on the lookout for the signs of growth — a new behavior learned or modified, a slight improvement in a skill, a glimpse of excellence or of “flow” where previously there were only halting steps. 

For you, these small increments — invisible to some — are clear signs of potential being realized. These signs of growth in others are your fuel. They bring you strength and satisfaction. Over time, many will seek you out for help and encouragement because on some level they know that your helpfulness is both genuine and fulfilling to you.


What is the extension of Developer as a leader? As an individual your focus is on other individuals, but as a leader you can be more group or organization focused. Developer is all about seeing potential, imagining things that haven’t yet happened and inspiring people to get there. If you think about what that might bring to leadership, you can see how helpful that can be as a visionary. You are more than just a mentor or a coach, you are a dreamer. Think about not only development of your own organization, but also of your clients and those who you serve. How can you get better? Where can you celebrate? 

People with high Developer can see that today is part of a bigger journey. It is part of where you’re going to be better tomorrow. This can bring imagination and hopefulness that leads to a great leadership experience. Developer can also be relentlessness. It can be what can make you persevere. You can understand how you can do better, and see how. Great leaders with Developer make celebrations matter. They can really celebrate and discuss a language of progress.  

Think about how your pursuit of something greater can inspire hope rather than discontent. A leader with Developer always sees a way that it can get better. Find ways to communicate potential. Align your values with developmental areas. Find what sort of things you are going to hold people accountable for. How are you going to define success? Find ways to help other people have those same types of conversations.

A Developer might build trust by intentionally demonstrating your strategy in areas where you want people to develop. Practice being a teacher. Don’t pass up an opportunity to share how you see someone could get better. A Developer might show compassion by discussing your own improvements to inspire others to constantly reach. Understand your own story, and share that you’re not just setting the bar for other people. 

You can provide stability by practicing and communicating the connections between improvement and success. Be predictable. Be that voice that says if we do X it leads to Y. It can be inspiring and motivating just helping others get better. A leader with Developer can inspire hope by seeking out unclear, chaotic or difficult situations. Help people imagine incremental improvements in those. Show up when others can’t see a way out, and help them see even small improvements. 

How do you feel about the Developer theme in a leadership role? Share your thoughts and experiences 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 and other Gallup-Certified Strengths Coaches break down the nuances of each theme.

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Nicki manages a diverse range of HR responsibilities including employee development through strengths coaching, succession planning, job design, performance management and employee relations. Nicki operates as a strategic business partner by working with her leadership teams to analyze, prioritize and respond proactively to organizational needs.

Nicki's top 5 strengths are: Empathy | Individualization | Achiever | Maximizer | Developer.

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