I first took what is now called the CliftonStrengths assessment back in March 2017. I remember the date vividly because since taking the online test, things have never been the same.
I use the word ‘game changer’ a lot when talking about CliftonStrengths because it sums it up perfectly.
What is CliftonStrengths?
To give a super quick overview of context for those who haven’t heard of the CliftonStrengths assessment. It’s an online assessment which provides a profile of your dominant strengths* – how you naturally think, feel and behave.
(Tip: check out season 2 of The Momentum Life Project podcast if you’d like to know more on the differences and the pros and cons of some of the most popular personality profiling tools).
Why did it change my life?
From the moment I took the assessment (actually not quite true, from the moment I then had a coaching session around the results – and the reason I then became an accredited coach is because of this session – I realised that you need this expert guidance and not just the reports in order to maximise the advantages in the ‘real world’) – I experienced some massive shifts…
- I no longer had to apologise for being me. I always knew I sometimes saw things a little differently to others but this cemented that actually, that’s not just okay but that is to be celebrated.
- It gave me the missing link when working with my clients – I had long realised (whilst running a strategic consultancy) that mindset and self development was just as important if not more important than the skills and business acumen needed to succeed but this a) enabled me to realise my own biases when discussing strategies and b) better appreciate where clients were falling down.
- It gave so many answers as to why it doesn’t matter how many times you try and emulate someone else’s process who has achieved great results – you need to look at how to modify it for your own particular and preferred way of working so that you set yourself up for success.
- It gave such an understanding of colleagues, co-workers, clients, family and friends that life became instantly well, easier (and that was before ever even knowing their profile and only ever knowing my own). Frustration points dissipated and productivity instantly increased.
Why the incredible change?
The key criticism of many personality profiling tools is that they ‘box’ people – CliftonStrengths really does quite the opposite and highlights just how different we really all are. For example, the chance of you having the same Top 5 (dominant) strengths in the same order as someone else is one in 33 million.
Knowing this, and knowing your unique profile you can start to observe and capitalise on how your strengths interplay. The starting point always is awareness but once you know you can’t ‘unknow’ so then you can begin to set intention around enhancing these strengths and maximising the leverage they provide to achieve more goals, increase productivity and enhance performance. It’s also why this tool goes from a ‘nice to know’ to one that is practical, actionable and easily integrated into what you’re already doing.
…and that is why knowing my CliftonStrengths profile has changed my life!
Disclaimer: the topics and suggestions discussed on the momentum life project are intended to be general in nature and the information does not constitute individual advice nor take into account your personal circumstances. Always seek the advice of a trained health professional with any questions you may have and before seeking any treatment.