There are many reasons why a person seeks out a strengths coach: the start of a new career, to enhance capabilities, to achieve specific goals, to grow or improve partnerships, to face a significant challenge, to improve his or her situation at home -- to name a few. The reasons are as diverse as each individual person, but there is a common thread: People are drawn to coaches because they want to better themselves.
As a coach, you want to help your clients create strategies and solutions that will allow them to learn, grow, develop, and in the process -- succeed.
Gallup has been studying human behavior for decades, and all of its research suggests there is no better place to start than by helping clients become aware of and experience success through more thoughtful application of their talents and strengths.
In 2012, Ryan Darby described the awakening he had when he first saw his strengths profile: "It was not until I took the [CliftonStrengths] assessment that I finally saw this pattern and understood what was happening." The discovery of his strengths gave him the insight and self-awareness to make changes in his life to improve his engagement and wellbeing.
When people work outside of their zone of strength, they are quite simply different people. When they are not able to use their strengths, and do what they do best, chances are they will have more negative than positive interactions with their colleagues, fewer positive and creative moments, fewer achievements, and even treat those around them poorly.
In stark contrast, Gallup studies indicate that people who DO have the opportunity to focus on their strengths every day are 6 times as likely to be engaged in their jobs and more than 3 times as likely to report having an excellent quality of life in general.
Those are real numbers that have very real ramifications on the health and wellbeing of a person.
When we have an opportunity to do what we do best, we act with more confidence, direction, and hope -- attributes that everyone needs to be successful.
I think there is a simple explanation for this:
There is a strong connection between who people are and what they do best; what people do best and how they feel; how people feel and how they perform.
An awareness and intentional application of strengths creates peaks of excellence in people -- points where a person is exceptionally brilliant, strong, and emotionally resilient. When we can help our clients increase their self-awareness, we can invite them to further experiment with these peaks, and seek ways to expand their positive impact to all areas of their life.
Success is not a victory march. At times, the going gets rough. When we are able to show up and put the very best of who we are into our lives, we become a lot stronger and a lot tougher. We better ourselves.