- Gallup Theme Thursday Webcast Series
- Season 4, Individualization
- Gain insight into the CliftonStrengths talent theme of Individualization: how to invest in it, if it's one of your dominant talents, and how to develop it in others.
On this Theme Thursday Season 4 webcast, Jim Collison, Gallup's Director of Talent Sourcing, and Maika Leibbrandt, Senior Workplace Consultant, talk about Individualization.
People exceptionally talented in the Individualization theme are intrigued with the unique qualities of each person. They have a gift for figuring out how different people can work together productively. Those with high Individualization are very present with people for who they are and not what they are a part of or how they are associated.
When Individualization is at its best it brings freshness and the ability to stay relevant because they know that every situation is different. It's the opposite of being on autopilot. Individualization can enhance the speed of relationships by noticing people for who they are and not having to use benchmarks such as as age, gender, years of experience, etc. but instead they are able to look and truly see the person. Individualization can customize the approach that they use to communicate outward when selling, providing insights to customers, or how they interact with a community.
Do more by looking for the best time to change something for an individual to ensure you are coming in at the right time and place. Also think about putting yourself into a process that is standardized to become a spotlight voice for what needs to be noticed. Look for those opportunities where others might see something repeated where you can be a great voice of insight. Think specifically for opportunities to build great recognition because you'll know exactly what speaks to people and how they want to be recognized.
Ask for environments where you get to create teams or choose your best partnerships. You'll be a natural spotter of unique potential. You'll see things that other people can't, that are good and positive. You can also use that as an understanding for yourself to know who you'll best partner with. Ask for environments of variance for what is standard, even if there are rigid expectations. You'll look for the nuance and see what is different, anticipate it, or perhaps create some difference.
Worry less about noticing, loving, or creating wide reaching rules or expectations. Let go of understanding the world through any type of generalization. Stereotypes can be helpful for other people but if you're high in Individualization that probably won't be as educational for you as it will be for other people. It doesn't mean that generalizations aren't meaningful, it just means that probably won't speak to you.
When working with someone with Individualization, expect pushback with generalized rules. First, tap into what someone with Individualization noticed to be unique and then help extrapolate that to bigger goals or more consistent ways to see the world. You might also expect them to be hesitant to use superlatives like always, never, best or worst. These words for people with high Individualization fall into the category of over simplification that miss the essence of what the person sees or appreciates.
Don't recognize people with Individualization by recognizing them how you recognize everyone else. Make sure there is something unique or special about your recognition. Explore how and what they want to be recognized for. Be obvious about exploring that, don't try to surprise them by guessing. Recognize times where they have deviated from the standard and either caught a mistake, created an exceptional experience, or made things easier.
Stretch someone with high Individualization by challenging them to speed up their routine they have to customize. Get in touch with how they best individualize i.e. do they need face time, do they need history, or do they need data? Then help them ask for what they need to individualize up front to help make that quicker. Go to them when you need help embracing something new or something different, they can spot was is truly diverse.
When partnering with someone with Individualization, discuss what rules need to be consistent. Establish agreed upon social contracts on how you will work together to make in the moment individualizing more okay. You can establish guidelines that ensure you check in with each other when something big changes or making sure that everyone is committed to something before moving forward. This can highlight Individualization by giving it a place where it can be present for very important times by admitting that not everything about life is dynamic. When partnering with Individualization ask them what is in others that's promising, where there is insight to potential, or when you can utilize and a appreciate a person that you are working with.
If Individualization is one of your Dominant Themes, invest in it this week through the following challenge items:
- Same question, different answer: Find your best question for getting to know people better and ask that same question to 4 of your closest colleagues to better understand their uniqueness.
- Become an expert of your own uniqueness: What is the best praise you have ever received? How do you best learn? What is true about your strongest relationships?
- Learn about someone else's interest and follow that Hot Button.
If Individualization is not one of your Dominant Themes, invest in it this week through the following challenge items:
- Develop a personalizing system -- Document something unique about 3-4 people on your team and write it down somewhere.
- Determine your capacity for bending rules -- When do you believe it is okay to deviate from common expectations? When is it best to stick to the same rule for everyone?