How can you take advantage of your Strengths in different situations?
The Strengths Advantage report in Cascade helps a client find practical applications for their Strengths. The worksheet enables them to explore the wider aspects of their Strengths for specific situations.
As you get to know your client or member of staff, choose a worksheet to help them overcome something they find challenging. It’s all about taking advantage of our strengths to bring out our best. Help your client discover new ways to use their natural talents.
Choose from the wide variety of topics to find the most suitable worksheet. Think about what will help them with collaboration or being more effective in their team. Perhaps something to do with their personal management or the way they lead others.
Use the worksheet to facilitate a 1:1 conversation or as part of a team exercise.
Strengths Advantage Topics
At the top of the page, select a topic from the drop-down list. The left panel of the page reveals the parts relating to the topic. Encourage your client to think about how they can use their strengths to contribute to each part. Some strengths will have a bigger role than others.
Help your client explore the dimensions of their strengths and explore new ways to apply them. See if they can discover some new opportunities. There are lots of ideas in the I Bring / I Need and Personal Insights reports. Have these reports nearby for reference.
To be effective in a role, there are four elements that drive productivity. These align closely with the four Domains of Leadership. You can look at the four elements together or delve deeper into one specific area.
- Decision Making
Help your client make informed decisions and find the best way forward.
- Persuading Others
Your client may have some great ideas, help them to convince others and get them on board.
Does your client tend to work on their own? Help them see the benefits of working with others and build trust.
- Getting Things Done
Help your client turn their thoughts into actions and find the motivation to finish.
Additional Bonus Pack Topics
The Bonus Pack opens up more topics, revealing additional worksheets.
The Performance SeQuEnCe model is the creation of Strengths Coach, Dries Lombaard in South Africa. He breaks down the concept of performance into the four elements of Speed, Quality, Endurance and Creativity. Each of the CliftonStrengths® themes has aspects that can increase or reduce these elements. The SeQuEnCe model helps clients appreciate how their strengths can improve or suppress overall performance.
Help your client increase their leadership effectiveness by consciously providing the four needs of followers. Consider how their strengths can build Trust, show Compassion, deliver Stability and maintain Hope.
- Creating a New Team
As individuals come together creating a new team, help them go through Tuckman’s stages of group development. Explore new ways to use the strengths in the team to navigate through the Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing stages.
- Situational Leadership
A new manager or perhaps a seasoned manager may focus on a single management style. The Situational Leadership model suggests four different approaches depending on the circumstances. Discuss each management style to increase their awareness of what is available. Explore how they can best use their strengths with a style in a way that works for them. This will help them be more dynamic with their ability to manage a variety of people and situations.
- Managing Others
Taking responsibility for staff can be tough and at times draining. Help a manager use their strengths creatively to assign the right tasks to individuals. Explore which themes provide clarity, maintain motivation and stimulate development.
- Managing Change
We all experience change. Learning how to approach change productively can create a more positive impact. As there are several change models available, this worksheet considers the four basic stages to apply strengths. Help your client see how they can use their strengths at each stage.
Whichever project management methodology you use, there are generally four stages. The worksheet for the Project Management topic helps a client appreciate the advantage of their strengths for each stage. Translating this into the project model will provide a wider appreciation and use of their strengths.
- Agile Projects
Some staff may find challenging to contribute effectively to all the Agile ceremonies in the sprint. The Agile Projects topic helps staff to identify new ways they can increase their involvement in each of the ceremonies. There may be opportunities to combine their strengths with a colleague for greater effectiveness. Use the worksheet in a team session to draw out the unique qualities from each person.
Rhythm of Motivation
How can your client regularly feed their strengths so they can constantly give of their best? Use the Rhythm of Motivation worksheet to help a person discover what they need every day, every week and each month. What big things do they need each quarter or year?
Setting up regular cycles to feed each strengths will increase motivation and energy levels.
This is also a good worksheet to use when someone is moving into a new season of life. Help them to plan a routine that will provide stability in a new environment.
When hit with a difficult time, a first reaction may be to panic or withdraw into oneself. The Crisis Management worksheet helps clients use their strengths to be more intentional with their actions for the long term good.
The steps explore getting the right perspective on what is really happening to overcome any bias from their themes. Discovering what is most important, the other steps help your client bring hope to others and plan for the present and the future.
The US Military developed the VUCA model in the 1990s to provide clarity when going forward. It is an acronym for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Uncertainty which all contribute to confusion.
The VUCA model breaks the situation down to what you know and what you can control. It provides a better platform to move forward. As you move forward, use principles and not procedures to create a more flexible approach. It is all about confident agility. As a leader, being clear about each aspect will bring hope and trust to those following.
Each VUCA element helps with decision making and leadership in times of chaos. More information is at VUCA World.
Caring for a loved one who is very ill is a challenging time. The Care Coaching worksheets explore how to use your strengths when caring for a loved one and taking care of yourself. Dawn F. Landry shares in her book ARMORED how she used strengths to care for her husband who suffered from cancer then later had a stroke. She sets out ten Battle Strategies providing a structure to look after your loved one and yourself.
Caring for a Loved One
Providing care in the right way for your loved one can make a big difference to both of your stress levels and the relationship. Use the Power of 2 worksheet to compare your strengths. Look at where your preferences may differ in terms of; factual versus emotional conversations, the volume of medical information, achievement of milestones, time to think before making decisions etc.
Use your strengths to plan your Battle Strategy while you have a clear head. Consider how to Keep track of all the medical information and events. How can you personalise the program to align with your and your loved one’s strengths? In stressful situations, the over emphasis of some strengths may become counter productive. When things get really tough, you’ll need to draw on your strengths even more to see you both through those dark times.
Taking Care of Yourself
It really is a case of putting on your own mask first. Look after yourself, so you are strong enough to look after your loved one. Consider how you can make time and space for yourself while you feed on your strengths – see the Brings & Needs report. How can you keep those close to you informed, without being bombarded by messages. What different perspective will make it easier to accept help? How can you celebrate the milestones and lighten the tough times?
Theme Advantage Updates
The most recent addition in February 2021 are the Care Coaching topics. In December 2020 we added the Performance SeQuEnCe model. The Crisis Management and VUCA worksheets were added in May 2020 in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
We describe more about the Strengths Advantage page in the July 2019 edition of Cascade Connection.
Tip: You can create a blank worksheet so each person writes in their own themes. Create an example person in the Theme Table with no themes. Then select that person for the Strengths Advantage report.
Note: The links to external websites show examples of the management models or processes available. They are purely examples for more information. There is no endorsement of those organisations or sites. Lots of other websites provide similar information when searching the internet.
The Strengths Advantage worksheets are only available in English.