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Called to Coach
Responsibility®: Developing Your Leadership Skills
Called to Coach

Responsibility®: Developing Your Leadership Skills

Webcast Details

  • Gallup CliftonStrengths Podcast, Season 2: Responsibility
  • What is the power of Responsibility in a leadership role?
  • How could Responsibility help or hinder you in leading others?

Below are audio and video plus a transcript of the conversation, including time stamps.


Explore Gallup's CliftonStrengths® for Leaders Report and discover its ability to help you maximize the impact of your -- and others' -- unique leadership talents and strengths, in this Season 2 episode of The CliftonStrengths Podcast. Join Jim Collison and Dr. Jaclynn Robinson as they discuss the Responsibility® theme, its power in a leadership role, how it can help or hinder you as you lead others, and how you can leverage it with the CliftonStrengths for Managers and CliftonStrengths for Sales Reports. Unlock the leadership potential of your Responsibility talent -- because everyone leads something.


People can count on this leader to follow through with their word and their actions.

Jaclynn Robinson, 1:49

There also has to be some space for that individual [whose leader has Responsibility] to feel empowered to carry out that activity on their own.

Jaclynn Robinson, 5:23

Jim Collison 0:00
I am Jim Collison, and this is The CliftonStrengths Podcast, Season 2, recorded on February 28, 2023.

Jim Collison 0:06
In this CliftonStrengths Podcast series, we look at the CliftonStrengths for Leaders Report one theme at a time, and today's theme is Responsibility. If you're listening live, you don't see the chat room, there's the link to it right above me there. Love to have you in there for the midshow. And if you have questions after the fact, you can always send us an email: Dr. Jaclynn Robinson is our host today. She works as a Senior Learning and Development Consultant here with me at Gallup. She joined me for Season 1 of The CliftonStrengths Podcast, where we looked at Wellbeing at Work one theme at a time. Great job on that, Jaclynn. And by the way, welcome back!

Jaclynn Robinson 0:53
Thank you. Happy Tuesday!

Introducing Responsibility

Jim Collison 0:55
Happy Tuesday to you as well. Great to be together. we're spending some time talking about Responsibility in the context of leaders. Let's get it started. Give us a little, a little intro to what is Responsibility?

Jaclynn Robinson 1:07
Yeah, someone with Responsibility takes psychological ownership of what they say they will do. They are committed to stable values such as honesty and loyalty.

What Is the Power of Responsibility in a Leadership Role?

Jim Collison 1:16
They're my favorite people in the whole world. I, can I just be clear about that? I mean, they, in a world where I can't get things done, they always do. In a world where I can't remember what happened 2 hours ago, they, they have the details. And I just, this is one -- I have envy, I have theme envy on this one. And this is one where I have to, I definitely have to partner with people with high Responsibility. What's the, as we're speaking of this in the context of the CliftonStrengths for Leaders Report, what's the power of this theme in a leadership role?

Jaclynn Robinson 1:47
I think you just highlighted a little bit of it. People can count on this leader to follow through with their word and their actions. This level of reliability that the leader offers creates such stability and trust and rapport in the workplace. And through that sphere of influence that they have, they can create a level of accountability for everybody. It's like, Ooh, I don't want to let this person down. They've never let me down. So almost by default, they can role-model that behavior for others as well.

How Can Those With Responsibility Lead Others?

Jim Collison 2:12
Yeah, I do think I want to talk about a myth, though. Sometimes we think with the leaders that they have to have Responsibility as a theme. Like, Oh, no, leaders have to get these things done. And there's other ways of getting things done besides Responsibility. You know, we think about that, that, that is a theme -- while I mentioned I've got theme envy for it, it is one that I feel the most responsibility for as a -- well, you're not supposed to use the word in the definition, but I just did there -- where I feel like I have to have that to be a good leader. And I don't, I don't think it's a required theme, like, for it. So it gets associated with it a lot, you know, but there are things like Developer and Individualization and Relator, they work just as well in working through, those are Influencing themes, in getting things done, right. So, you know, that's one of those. As we think about, let's, let's spend a little more time thinking about how can this theme lead others? Let's talk a little bit more about that.

Jaclynn Robinson 3:13
Yeah, well, a leader with this theme can encourage and serve as an accountability partner to their colleagues and direct reports. They can assist others in identifying how to manage their priorities and how to hit their key goals and their deadlines.

Jim Collison 3:26
Yeah. We, we spent some time with you 2 years ago, talking about the 5 Coaching Conversations. I think you were part of, that you were part of that with me, and we did that. As we think about high Responsibility in leadership, and you talk about managing priorities to hit their goals, expand on that a little bit with Responsibility, how that helps. Like, what are some things you think of that a leader can do to help in that area?

Jaclynn Robinson 3:53
I can see someone with Responsibility pretty adept at having those Quick Connect conversations that are maybe 5 to 10 minutes in length, just to check in. How's this project coming along? You know, are you needing any support? They are so focused on deadlines and wanting to commit that I can see this individual being someone that's checking in with their team. Think one thing they have to be cognizant of is, Am I over-checking in with this individual? But those Check-In conversations and Quick Connect conversations -- so whether it's 5 minutes or 30 minutes, I can see them really wanting to do that follow up. How's it going for you? What support do you need? How can I support you? If they are, I call it "discombobulated" -- you know if their head is spinning because they have so many priorities, someone with Responsibility, whenever they're having those touch-bases, can check in to say, OK, I think this is going to be the key priority. This is the deadline that's going to be due the soonest. And then you can move everything else a little bit further down that list. But yeah.

How Could Responsibility Hinder Your Leadership of Others?

Jim Collison 4:56
We're gonna, we're gonna talk about, a little bit about this in the context of the 4 Needs. But as we think about -- and you alluded to this a little bit. Let's talk about how this theme can hinder your, the, your leadership of others. You've alluded to it, but let's talk a little more about it specifically, I think this one comes with a little bit of a hook. So spend some time talking about that.

Jaclynn Robinson 5:15
Yes. So one key barrier is related to the empowerment of others. Going back to those Check-Ins, you know, there also has to be some space for that individual to feel empowered to carry out that activity on their own. Sometimes this leader means well, but due to that strong sense of Responsibility, they might overstep or overinvolve themselves in somebody's work. And then I'd say the other that I've probably coached managers on quite a bit is being able to say "No" to tasks for themselves or the team. This can burn them out or the team out, if they're taking on too much that might not be a key priority or even an overall goal of that particular team or department. Something they can do, but it's not a need-to-do, and they take it on anyways.

Jim Collison 6:05
Think that me to we on Responsibility is, it can be, and sometimes the overstepping of those, well, I know I'm leading, but I know this needs to get done. I'm going to make sure I get it done. Right, instead of the we is, I know, as a team, we need to get this done. And so I'm going to clear, I'm going to clear things, so this person who I've given responsibility for it to do is going to be able to get it done. Or that I empower others on the team to be able to work through those to own those pieces, right, to get, to be able to work through it, there can be kind of an overstepping -- all meant well. All meaning, I've seen this happen, all, oftentimes not meant, like, in a, you know, we'd say, in English, a ball hog. You know, someone who wants to have the ball all the time when you're playing in a sport, right. But, but it's all meant well, because that strength's working, but I think sometimes that shift from me to we is, How do I move some of those responsibilities downstream so others feel that? They may not even have the theme, but they, we still need to be responsible. Even though I have it low, I still have to be responsible for things, right. I just have to figure out other ways to make sure I'm staying kind of responsible for those things. Anything else you want to add to that, before we think about the 4 Needs?

Jaclynn Robinson 7:25
That's good. I think the, what can help shift that for those high in Responsibility -- you mentioned it, you know, I could delegate out this task that empowers and develops the individual. Or just taking a pause, checking back in with the team: Is this something you want to take on? Do you have the bandwidth to take this on? Or you can be dependable just by referring out that individual to a resource or referring them to somebody else. Allows you to say "No."

Jim Collison 7:52
Hope, Stability, Compassion and Trust are the 4 Needs we're talking about. We've been spending time as we're working through the season. Where do you think Responsibility fits in on those 4 Needs -- or, yeah, let me just ask you that question.

Jaclynn Robinson 8:05
Ooh, I'm going straight for Trust -- Trust and Stability. These are the folks that will, you know, do what they say they're going to do. They're going to keep their word. They're going to complete the tasks at hand that they committed to. So people can trust that this person is going to be there for them. And I think that offers a lot of Stability when the boat isn't rocked, so to speak, because they know this person is going to get something done. They're not going to slip on deadlines and have everyone, you know, running around with their, their hair on fire. They're there. They're stable. They're that stable rock for people.

How Can You Use Responsibility as You Lead, Together With the Managers and Sales Reports?

Jim Collison 8:45
I think it brings in a little Compassion, in the sense of, of understanding, because people love to get things done. I mean, we're kind of wired, as humans, on, on that. We like to complete things. We like to get them done, check them off. That's not, I don't think that's exclusive just to people who have high Responsibility. I think we all like to contribute, right, and part of that. And I just think that, that, you know, understanding that about our human nature brings us Compassion to help people get there. Right. And it's not just about turning responsibilities over to the individual and you do it on your own; that, it might be one of, let me help you get there. Right. It's hard to go someplace you've never been before. And so if you've been there before, and you can take them there, I mean, like, it's, it's a great way to share that Compassion for -- and to have true Compassion in the sense of, I'm doing this for your -- it fits in all categories. We're just talking through that. I thought this season, it would be great to bring that in, and kind of have that conversation from a 4 Needs perspective. Jaclynn, when we think about this, we're also this season spending time pairing this up with the CliftonStrengths for Sales Report, the CliftonStrengths for Managers Report. Those two reports are available. And we're thinking about this kind of like report dynamics. I don't know why I do this every time on video, but I do. So if you're watching the video, you're seeing me put my fingers together. How could we take those two reports -- let's start with Sales. So CliftonStrengths for Leaders, CliftonStrengths for Sales. How could we put those together for success?

Jaclynn Robinson 10:23
Well, internally, a sales leader with Responsibility can keep their team on course to hit their target goals. They're gonna be focused on those goals and deadlines. And they likely have instilled quite a few efficient processes, I would imagine, to help really streamline the proposal process and the contracts process. And they might check in with employees, just to ensure that they feel supported with the client load or the pipeline that they have.

Jim Collison 10:49
Sales teams always send it -- always tend to set goals. Right? That seems to be the nature of sales teams. This is our sales goal for -- well, it's an easy goal. Sometimes in jobs, performance is hard to measure, right, but not in sales. That's, it's a, it's a no-brainer, right? So I love this idea, though, of leading with, with the Responsibility in sales and maybe setting those goals. I love, I love what you said. Clear, like having very clear goals moving forward. Here's what we need to do to be successful. As we think about this in the context of the CliftonStrengths for, for Managers Report, how can we put those two together?

Jaclynn Robinson 11:29
A leader who manages others with this theme is probably seen as reliable and hardworking. We've all seen these folks that lead with Responsibility. So when it comes to goal setting, general responsibilities, key priorities, challenges, they know they can depend on this manager to help them think through and manage their workload. This is that person you can just count on. Trust, Trust, Stability, Compassion -- the three we touched on right there.

Jim Collison 11:58
Yeah. Can lean on. Like I love that. Right? I love that. You know, the manager with day-to-day responsibilities, the leader with long-term responsibilities of understanding, here's where we, these are the things we can't miss. These are the things -- I see a mentoring role in that as well of, I've been there; I've done these things. I need to, let's walk you through this. We've done it before. And staying with the process. How many times have you, how many times have you started something in an organization, and then the organization itself kind of wanders off track. Like, Hey, guys, come back! Come back! But using that Responsibility to keep teams on track or to keep, to keep divisions or whatever, kind of on track. As we think about wrapping this up, Jaclynn, anything else you'd say as we, as we kind of put a, put a bow on Responsibility?

Jaclynn Robinson 12:55
I'd actually give a call-out to those that work with folks with Responsibility. Because we can overdepend on these individuals. And they might, you know, they might be struggling to still learn how to say "No" or prioritize. So I think it's really just making sure we're not taking advantage of folks that have Responsibility high to do the work or, or overcommit. And then those with Responsibility, also taking that, that moment to just pause and say, Hey, can I get back to you? So you can look at your own workload or talk to the team before approving something and then going back to that person -- Hey, I'm sorry, you know, I might be able to take that on, but it's gonna have to go down the list. I have other priorities, or I'd refer you to, you know, such-and-such to support you with this. Those little pauses can make all the difference in maybe realigning and reassigning your work.

Jim Collison 13:48
Ooh, I like that! I like it. Well, listen, I want to thank you for your Responsibility, your Achiever-Responsibility plays together to make sure we get this done every week. Your, you know, the notes show up a day ahead of time, even though I've told you, Hey, I can take them, I can take them just in time. Nope. It's always a day ahead in most cases, and I always appreciate you demonstrating that in action for me, and it's just a great partnership. I would always have the notes last minute to you, if it was flipped, and --

Jaclynn Robinson 14:25
You'd be on that struggle bus.

Jim Collison 14:28
Jim, I need your, I need the notes. Well, with that, we'll remind everyone to take full advantage of all the resources we do have available now in Gallup Access. Speaking of Responsibility, we discovered, I've been saying this all season, that the, you can head, log in: Go to the upper-left menu, drop it down, choose Resources and put the theme in. Not all the themes were there, apparently. So been working with Mark on getting those retagged. We had to dig into the system, figure some things out, hadn't been configured right, so we configured it. And now, pretty confident, you'll be able to find most of them -- if not all -- available there. Just type in "Responsibility," and everything we've done on that will show up for you. A great way to kind of do a kind of a strengths overview; a great tool to use, and one of those things available to you. Stay up to date with all the webcasts by following us on Eventbrite. Go to Create an account and, and just follow us there, and then you'll never miss a notification that we're doing something live. Join us on any social platform by searching "CliftonStrengths." Certainly listen to this as a podcast on The CliftonStrengths Podcast. Get that subscribed to. And remember, Like, Subscribe, all those other things, so that, one, it just helps us with discovery. Thanks for joining us today. If you're listening live, stay around for a little bit of midshow. With that, we'll say, Goodbye, everybody.

Jaclynn Robinson's Top 5 CliftonStrengths are Achiever, Strategic, Maximizer, Positivity and Relator.

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

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