Last year I started reading Destination Unstoppable by Maureen Electa Monte as part of my personal reading. In it, Maureen writes about taking her corporate team development approach using the Gallup StrengthsFinders results to a high school hockey team. I started reading this book shortly after joining the board of directors for my son’s lacrosse team. But as I read the book it made me wonder, “What would my StrengthsFinder results be?”
Before I took the test I really wasn’t sure what to expect. How accurate would it be? But I answered the questions quickly, didn’t over think them, and the results were so spot on. I was honestly a little surprised that a brief multiple choice test seemed to “get” me. Here is the first in the series of my results.
5. Responsibility (Executing)
You take psychological ownership of what you say you will do. You are committed to stable values such as honesty and loyaltymy personal CliftonStrengths report
What this means to me is that when I commit to a task, a project, or even hosting Christmas dinner, I go for it fully and completely. I don’t just work through the problem, but I own getting it done. When I tell someone I’m going to do something, it means I will do whatever it takes to get it done.
Sometimes this can lead to me being over-commitment on my part. I deal with this by keeping a detailed calendar and to-do list that I can reference before accepting new assignments. But it also means that I tend to work independently well.
What are some tools that can be helpful in taking full advantage of the responsibility strength?
- Learn to say no! This is one that I actively need to work at. Just because there is an opportunity to do something doesn’t mean I need to be the one to do it. I am actively working on accepting full accountability where it really matters to me, and not taking ownership of every tasks or project I brush up against. At the very least, I’ve had to learn to say “can I get back to you” so I can take a hot moment to check my availability, my other commitments, and consider if I really have time to add one more thing.
- Focus is not a four-letter word. With so many potential tasks or projects to consider, it is easy to become distracted or overloaded. This is where some productivity techniques have really helped me. This includes my Full Focus Planner, Google Calendar, and Nozbe. By seeing everything laid out in front of me it not only makes it easier to understand how full my life is right now, but also to prioritize my day to day tasks.
- Patience. No really. This is another one that I’m currently working on. When working with others whether my kids, my co-workers, my fellow board members for the lacrosse league, I can get frustrated when they don’t have the same sense of responsibility to get the things done they have committed to. I mean, how can they NOT stress over it. But as I continue to grow and understand different strengths, it helps to remind me that they just don’t see it the same way. A simple example…not having homework completed when I was in school just was not an option. I would stay up all hours of the night in high school working on homework. I can still feel the anxiety start to build up as I think about what it would have been like to arrive at school without my homework. That was that responsibility strength kicking in in high gear. My son, however, seems completely unfazed when it comes to not turning in a math homework assignment here or there. He is here to teach me patience, I’m sure of it.
Responsibility has had a huge impact on my life and as I reflect back I can see the foundations of it as early as 1st grade. Honestly, it is hard to imagine how it is only number 5. This sense of responsibility also goes hand in hand with loyalty…and with it, perhaps the staying in relationships longer than I should have (work & personal) due to that sense of responsibility pushing me to make it work.
And with this..the preview of #4, Harmony.