One word I do not associate with the Learner® theme is ‘academic’. I love learning but hated school. So what is the Learner theme and what does it mean?learner theme strengthsfinder google

Acronyms are in abundance in today’s world. When I hear a new one or don’t know what it means, I’m on the Internet or I annoyingly ask the person who said it. In fact, Google is my friend, I am always searching for anything that interests me to find out more.

To me, the CliftonStrengths® ‘Learner’ theme is all about an enquiring mind. The curiosity to find out more and the satisfaction of achieving the next level of knowledge. In addition, its the ability to use or share additional knowledge, enabling others to benefit.

Stepping outside of my comfort zone invigorates my Learner theme. Occasionally my Maximizer® theme takes a giant leap into the unknown, creating a lot of work for the Learner theme to catch up. Whether it is embarking on a new cycling challenge that is much further than I had ridden before, turning a few thoughts into a book and getting it published or taking on a huge project in a new environment. Each of these challenges required extensive research and a much higher level of understanding to make them succeed.

Turning the Learner® Theme into a Strength

Years ago, I admired the great questions others asked and pondered why I was not able to think with their brilliance. Oh yes, I’m not an academic! Over time, since recognising my Learner Theme, I allow my inquisitiveness to speak up, supporting it with my genuine desire to know more. Exploring probing question types and learning to deeply listen are additional ways to increase effective learning. Now I just ask what is on my mind.

The Learner theme is often associated with having lots of books. I’m not an avid reader, but if there is a subject that interests me, I might buy the book. Having said that, my collection of books is steadily growing.

The Learner theme also has a desire for something new, be it a new way of doing something or creating a new experience. At times it can get frustrated with routine and may want to shake things up a little as part of continuous improvement. It embraces change and can be an advocate when implementing change.

Visiting a place for the first time or taking on a new activity, feeds my Learner theme. Drawing on its courage with the unknown helps me to overcome my Adaptability theme resting at #34. In fact the Learner theme is quite versatile, enhancing many other themes. My Strategic® theme is at #33 where I previously dreaded or avoided strategic planning meetings. I felt I had little to offer. Embracing my Learner theme, I ask those searching and provoking questions. This raises new possibilities and draws out the thoughts of others.

How can the Learner® Theme work across the Domains?

The Learner theme is in the Strategic Thinking Domain to pioneer new ways of thinking or bring a new perspective.
In the Influencing Domain, it can help to speak knowledgeably about a subject, providing a persuasive and powerful message.
For the Relationships Domain, it can learn about the interests of others or take the time to understand who people are, building up and fostering trust.
In the Executing Domain, it learns how to operate a piece of equipment or seeks out best practice, removing the fear of the unknown to get things done.

How can I develop my Learner® theme further?

Developing the Learner theme to be more effective can involve finding your preferred learning style or knowing at what times of the day your mind is most receptive. Use your other themes to concentrate your learning on the most useful or relevant topics.
Focus® – to direct your learning towards your goal.
Maximizer® – to learn subjects that will provide the best return.

How to get the most out of Learner®

The Learner theme can offer so much, however it needs to be fed. Food for the Learner theme comes in the form of room to grow and develop, exposure to new information, ongoing learning opportunities, times to share or apply the information learned and most of all variety.

Discover more about CliftonStrengths®, previously called StrengthsFinder®, and how a strengths-based approach can make a lasting difference.

Something Extra

Seach for someone who shares your top 5 themes at Strengths Twins. The Learner theme is the most frequent theme in the Strengths Twins database.

Richard Sterry

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