This week I celebrate one year since joining the team at Leadership Vision. While I am not necessarily a person who wants a big party for anniversaries (although Brian promised me a large balloon drop and confetti…which I am still waiting on), I do like to reflect and put all the pieces into place using my Arranger. It helps me see a bigger picture of where I’ve come from, and where I am going.
The three questions that continue to roll around in my head are, “What have I learned,” “Would I do it all again?” and “Why does this matter?”
What have I Learned?
I have the strength of Communication and am often thinking of things in threes. This is the case here as I ponder the three biggest lessons I have learned in the past year.
1. Strengths Apply to Everyone
From the moment Brian offered me the Client Services Manager position, (and has only deepened over the last year), I appreciate how our company believes that the work we do applies to everyone within an organization. In some cases, professional and team development only applies to the “C-Suite” or VP level, due to budgetary constraints or company values, or only applied within geographical locations.
I learn every day how Leadership Vision rests in the certainty that a true cultural impact requires the inclusion of everyone within an organization – from the top to the bottom; and is globally applicable. Our clients, located in 30 countries and all over the United States, that have adopted this methodology within their own organizations, have seen the deep and meaningful shift with their people and teams.
Being a part of a global conversation and being able to relate on some level to anyone within an organization, is significant to me.
2. Starting from a Place of Strength Shifts the Conversation from the Onset
In my role, I work with a diverse set of client contacts in order to make our engagements successful. Often the virtual introductions include our individual Top 5 strengths, which allows us to begin from a place of common understanding and a shared language, despite the new relationship.
I was recently working with a client contact who said, “Good ideas and processes come about when two ARRANGERs get together.” So true! These relationships have been successful when we operate from a place of commonality instead of frustration or assumption. Plus, I have the opportunity to work with a swath of people that represent unique strength combinations. My Input finds those fascinating!
3. We each Lead with our Unique set of Strengths
Despite being introduced to strengths seven years ago, I operated under the assumption my Top 5 strengths were not “leadership strengths.” I mean, how could I lead with Strategic, Communication, Arranger, Input and Responsibility? I need strengths like Command, Achiever, Focus, Woo to be a “good leader.”
As this past year has unfolded, the team here at Leadership Vision not only sought out my unique Strengths specific for this position, but has time and time again, held them up as a critical piece to the success of our culture and company. Brian can be heard saying, “I have always wanted an Arranger on our team.”
My Top 5 strengths are unique to me and I lead distinctively within them. I do not need to have someone else’s strengths to be a powerful leader. Plus, other strengths I was coveting, would not be authentic to who I am and would in fact, make me an ineffective leader. Instead, I get to just be me.
Would I do it all again?
The answer is a resounding YES!
The work we do is deeply meaningful to people and teams. I now have a lens to begin relationships from a mutual starting place with a common language. Personally, I have seen my own strengths mature and have become comfortable in my own “strengths skin.”
On top of that, I work with an incredible group of people who brighten my days, make me laugh and continually push me to be better than I was the day before.
Why Does this Matter?
As I got to the end of this post, I asked myself “Why do our clients care that I have been with Leadership Vision for a year?” Why am I choosing to reflect on the work we do?” What is the takeaway from this all?
Nathan is always asking us to reflect in these posts. It’s a practice that not only helps us internally, but can be used as a tool to help others. This brief opportunity to reflect on the last year has helped affirm my decision to take a chance and step into this new chapter in my life.
But more than that, it’s an opportunity to challenge you to reflect on any big decisions you have made in your life. What did YOU learn from those decisions? What might YOU do differently (if at all)?
Strengths offers us a fantastic language and barometer to reflect on decisions we have made, and see if they align with who we know ourselves to be based on our strengths. If you see that you are in a place where you are able to use your strengths more often than not, perhaps it was a good decision. If not, then maybe it’s time to make another change…
I’ll be perfectly honest in saying that prior to taking the position, I did not know what I was getting myself into. Perhaps some of you felt the same way when you took a chance on something, and are now celebrating your one year anniversary of a “good” decision. To you I say, “Happy Anniversary!” And cheers to many more anniversaries together.
What have you learned from big decisions you’ve made in your life? Have those decisions aligned with your strengths?