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How to Lead Effective Strengths Trainings

How to Lead Effective Strengths Trainings

Webcast Details

  • Gallup Called to Coach Webcast Series
  • Season 4, Episode 32
  • Listen to Dean Jones as he shares the understanding of strengths you need to have, and the content you'll need to cover, to lead effective strengths trainings.

On a recent Called to Coach, we spoke with Gallup's Talent Development Architect, Dean Jones.

This edition of Called to Coach kicks off a two-part series on leading effective strengths trainings. In this first episode, Dean Jones, the principal architect of Gallup's global client learning strategy, discusses what kind of content to cover in a group session. The first core area to focus on is the understanding that CliftonStrengths are rooted in a study of excellence -- that weakness-fixing might prevent failure, but doesn't lead to excellence. Next, as session leader, you should define talent, strengths and themes properly, as well as how the CliftonStrengths assessment works.

Lastly, help people name, claim and aim their talents. Dean goes into detail on each of these points, highlighting the most effective strategies for helping people understand the depth of the concepts. On a November Called to Coach he will talk about delivery techniques for leading effective strengths trainings.

Here are Dean's Notes:

Called to Coach Outline: Leading Effective Strengths Trainings -- Part 1: Content

Strengths Coaches often ask, "What makes a great, effective strengths training?"

  • Coaches are often asked to deliver strengths trainings
  • We don't really cover trainings in the Accelerated Course -- really designed to equip coaches around one-on-one coaching

Four core areas to cover:

  • Strengths is rooted in a study of excellence
    • Understand successes -- "Never so strong as when we have our successes clearly in mind" (Don Clifton)
    • Access to excellence -- to greatness -- starts with understanding your own talent
    • Talent is innate
    • Best in a role deliver same outcomes using different behaviors
    • Weakness-fixing prevents failure, but doesn't lead to excellence
    • Nontalents don't develop into strengths, and strengths develop infinitely and exponentially
  • Define Talent, Strengths, Theme
    • Talent -- capacity for excellence, naturally recurring patterns, innate
    • Strengths -- consistent, near-perfect performance (synonymous with results)
    • Theme -- categorization of talent
    • Strengths Formula -- Talent x Investment = Strength
  • CliftonStrengths assessment
    • CliftonStrengths is not a "typology" -- but represents paths to excellence
    • 34 themes
    • Validation as an instrument (how much time to spend "defending" the assessment)
  • Name, Claim & Aim Your Talents
    • NAME
      • Understanding your own talents and the talents of others, using language of CliftonStrengths
      • Getting clear about the power and edge -- the unique and powerful value of each talent theme in your profile
      • Most commonly recurring themes -- global: Achiever, Responsibility, Learner, Relator, Strategic
      • Teaching the themes is one of the biggest challenges -- often begins with breadth, then proceeds to depth
      • Listen intently -- people tend to collapse themes
    • CLAIM
      • Creating awareness, appreciation and acceptance
      • Have to stay in the "meta-conversation" listening for the development of awareness, rather than trying to teach all the dimensions of the themes
      • Asking questions that prompt levels of awareness -- theme to experience, experience to theme.
        • Theme I used recently
        • Theme that I like to use
        • Theme that others recognize me for
        • Themes that help me build relationships, get things done, figure things out, etc.
    • AIM
      • Choosing to focus on your strengths
      • Applying your talents to reach goals and outcomes
      • Thinking about your mission -- and how your talents and strengths can help you fulfill your mission
      • Intentionally thinking about how to develop your talents into strengths by adding knowledge, skills (practice), experiences, relationships, structures, etc.
  • Weaknesses
    • Anything that gets in the way of your success
    • Building self-awareness -- shifting away from being protective and defensive about areas of weakness and nontalent
    • Creates appreciation for the talents and strengths of others
    • Begins the process of full self-expression and self-regulation

Other areas:

  • Five clues to talent
  • Strengths domains
  • Theme dynamics
    • Individual
    • Interpersonal (complementary partnerships)
  • Theme awareness
    • Formerly balconies and basements, raw and mature
  • Sharing talents and strengths with others
  • Team blend of strengths

Next time: Part 2: Leading Trainings (10 Tips)

To hear more about coaching strengths for organizations, individuals and coaches, please watch the full video or listen to the audio above.

Dean Jones' Top 5 CliftonStrengths are Activator, Focus, Woo, Strategic and Relator.

Learn more about using CliftonStrengths to help yourself and others succeed:

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