Talent Neglect Series, Part 3: Increasing Competency and StrengthAug 31, 2023
As we wind up our summer series on Talent Neglect let’s talk about life application. After you have moved from ignorant to informed, and taken passive knowledge to intentional action, you are moving from talent awareness to building strengths.
In past blogs we have shared Clifton’s formula for developing a talent into a strength. By adding skills, knowledge, and use, a talent can become a consistent, near perfect performance in an activity that we love doing. This month I will share four ways I coach people to engage in this process with their Top 5 talents. These will be more quadrant related rather than talent specific but it will initiate you into the myriad of ways to add skills, knowledge, and new experiences to our talents.
Let’s start with the Energize talents. People with these talents typically have things they want to get done and can get overwhelmed with timelines, goals, or to do lists. Justin had Activator and Achiever and was constantly overcommitting and not knowing where to start. I shared with him the power hour concept. Spend one hour focused on initiating things on his to do list with his Activator. He got more started and finished than he anticipated in those 60 minutes because he was in the flow of two of his top talents. He found that the hour gave him the momentum to keep going beyond 60 minutes on a project he had been avoiding.
Mobilize talents motivate others to action and results when working well. Most mobilizers I work with, like Monica and her Woo, find great benefit in adding communication skills to their prowess of motivation. Taking a class on media, writing, or communication can increase their power of persuasion by saying more with less. Monica joined Toastmasters, a great organization that has helped thousands of people improve their speaking skills. She went from an amusing talker to an inspiring speaker over a couple of years.
People with Reflect talents can create a talent specific “reflecting pool” to immerse themselves in on a daily basis. Find a place or environment that stimulates your green zone. For problem solving or creative talents it may be a whiteboard with different colored markers. For the research talents it may be a library or study nook. For the deep-thinking talents, a place of quiet solitude or a walk in nature may do the trick. Spend 30 minutes each day intentionally letting those reflect talents process, create, absorb or just meditate. Some people benefit from keeping a journal of their reflection times.
For the Connect talents think of skills, knowledge, or experiences you can engage in to mitigate the Kryptonite of your true blue talents. Taking the initiative to add to your Relator circle, reading a book on boundaries for your Responsibility or Includer, or adding conflict management skills to your Harmony and Empathy will not only increase the competency of your talents, but you may enjoy the benefit of greater quality and quantity of relationships.
Accelerate your journey from good to great. As we move from summer activities to new fall routines, take the Inpowered Challenge to move from ignorance to intentionality to increasing your strengths. Use The Intentionality Inventory (from our blog last month) to pick a talent to build greater competency using one of our coaching tips above. You just might turn this season of change into one of transformation.