- Gallup CliftonStrengths Podcast, Season 2: Consistency
- What is the power of Consistency in a leadership role?
- How could Consistency 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 Consistency® 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 Consistency talent -- because everyone leads something.
If you have Consistency high, you are keenly aware of the need to treat people the same. You crave stable routines and clear rules and procedures that everyone can follow.Jaclynn Robinson, 1:03
Leaders and employees can rely on this leader to remain cool, calm and collect. Because this person is going to be working to establish a new structure in the workplace that creates stability, fairness and predictability.Jaclynn Robinson, 7:10
Jim Collison 0:00
I am Jim Collison, and this is The CliftonStrengths Podcast, Season 2, recorded on March 15, 2023.
Jim Collison 0:21
In this CliftonStrengths Podcast series, we look at the CliftonStrengths for Leaders Report one theme at a time, and today's theme is Consistency. If you're listening live, love to have you join us in chat. There's a link to right above me there, if you're not there. And if you're listening after the fact, and you have questions, you can always send us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Dr. Jaclynn Robinson is our host today. She works as a Senior Learning and Development consultant and joined me for Season 1 of The CliftonStrengths Podcast, where we looked at the book Wellbeing at Work, one theme at a time. And Jaclynn, always great to see you. Welcome back!
Jaclynn Robinson 0:52
Hi. Thank you.
Jim Collison 0:55
Good to have you today. We are talking about Consistency. Let's start off with that definition, and then I'll have an extra question for you.
Jaclynn Robinson 1:02
You bet. So if you have Consistency high, you are keenly aware of the need to treat people the same. You crave stable routines and clear rules and procedures that everyone can follow.
Jim Collison 1:13
I think sometimes, as we look at the, what you just said, right, we focus on -- and we used to call this theme "Fairness" in the early days. And I really see two things here in this definition. One is the way we treat people the same, as opposed maybe to Individualization, where everybody gets a unique look at it. Also, the second part, I think you said, like, craves stable routines and clear rules. Those seem to me, maybe -- treating people the same and doing things the same -- maybe a little bit different. Can you clarify that just a little bit more for me, as we think about those two ideas together?
Jaclynn Robinson 1:50
Yes. So the, the routine and the stability and predictability of the day-to-day helps everyone know what rules to follow, so everyone can feel like they're treated the same. And I think that's that piece that we sometimes leave off when thinking about Consistency, because we hear it and go, Ooh, that sounds a lot like Discipline; they like predictability and structure. But the motivation behind it isn't to just make their world predictable; it's because that creates rules everyone is, you know, aware of. And when they have that predictable routine, they all know what, what to expect. No one's caught off guard. So everyone feels like they're treated fair and equal.
Jim Collison 2:30
Thanks for saying that. That has been, I've, this has been one theme -- and I've been doing this for years now -- and that's been, this has been one theme I always struggle with it a little bit. And I guess maybe I say that to say we're never done understanding these. We're never done, like, Oh, I got this.
Jaclynn Robinson 2:47
Jim Collison 2:48
You know, 7, 8 years into this -- 6 years of Theme Thursday, 2 seasons here, so we're at 8. And I'm still struggling with it a little bit. So I love that, because it, what, from here on out, I will think of the me to we. And I think the maturity of this is creating stable routines so that we can treat people fairly, right. We can treat people consistently in that -- using the small "c," I don't know. So thanks --
Jaclynn Robinson 3:16
Yes! I'm glad you called it out. I'm so glad that you --
Jim Collison 3:19
Would you add anything else?
Jaclynn Robinson 3:20
You asked me to sort through those.
Jim Collison 3:21
Would you add anything else?
Jaclynn Robinson 3:22
No. But I think as we continue to go, as we continue to work through today, just talking about Consistency, and you hear Stability or little "c" consistency show up or predictability, it is with that, that motivational piece of because that's going to help people know exactly what's expected, so everyone feels like they're treated fairly.
What Is the Power of Consistency in a Leadership Role?
Jim Collison 3:42
No, I love that. It gives me a new way to think about it. And the definition in my, I mean, today rewrites that a little bit for me, and it's low, super low for me. So 33, I think, is where it lands. So I don't think about it often. But it does, it teaches me a little bit more about that of like, OK, I can now see the me to we and why the consistent routines are important that leads to more consistent -- the way we treat people or creating stable environments for those. I think we'll highlight that a little bit lower down. So we're spending this, this season thinking about this new role-based report, CliftonStrengths for Leaders. And we're thinking about it in the context of that. And of course, I think Consistency has leadership written all over it, much like Individualization does, because it's the way we treat people in that. So what's the power? What do you think? What's the power of this theme in a leadership role, then?
Jaclynn Robinson 4:33
I think you really see the 4 Needs show up. They bring Stability to the organization through the norms and the rules they create, to bring fairness to everyone. And individuals know what to expect with this leader. So that level of consistency -- little "c" -- and predictability breeds a lot of trust.
Jim Collison 4:52
How do you think, how do we reconcile that a little bit in your experience with Individualization? And, because we know people need both, right, they need both. And so as you've, as you've worked with leaders with high Consistency, and we think about that question, because we need consistent procedures, but people need to be treated oftentimes, or at least thought about, individually. Right? How do we, how do you, how would you reconcile those two?
Jaclynn Robinson 5:20
I love seeing those two paired up together, where they're, they're, they're partnering together in a workplace. Because then you've got these, these rules, these norms, these social mores that people need to abide by for fairness, but Individualization makes sure that that person is on the right seat. They're in the right role. Their talents and strengths are being exercised and cultivated. And people with Consistency can do that, too. And that might come through another theme, but I think they can work so fluidly together, because Consistency can create that foundation of, This is what we all need to abide by. And Individualization could say, OK, now let's find, you know, they're kind of the columns that say, OK, now let's figure out where you sit and where we can really play to your own unique talents and strengths.
How Can Those With Consistency Lead Others?
Jim Collison 6:08
Yeah, I love that. Because it's not either/or; it's both-and. They have to exist together. In leadership, they have to exist together. They can't be separated. It can't be one or the other. They have to, they have to coexist, right? Yeah, they have to coexist together. And they can. I think this is the maturity model in this is realizing if I have high Consistency, that those Individualization components have to exist; how do we get there? And then vice versa, right. I think we probably alluded to this a little bit when we talked about Individualization as well. And how does that Consistency, I have high Individualization, high Relator, high Developer; I want to create custom programs for everybody. As I've matured in my leadership, I've learned I have to do that in a consistent way. Right? I have to find those individual plans, in a way. Let's talk some more about how this theme can lead others.
Jaclynn Robinson 7:05
Well, in organizations, change is expected. And it's often overcome. Leaders and employees can rely on this leader to remain cool, calm and collect. Because this person is going to be working to establish a new structure in the workplace that creates stability, fairness and predictability once again. And so they can look to them, a lot like someone even with Adaptability, and go, Ooh, OK, looks like they've got this. Adaptability is comfortable reacting to change, being in the moment. But Consistency is one of those themes that can really just say, OK, no, we're gonna get through this. Let's just figure out a new structure we can put in place. And, you know, let's get this machine running again.
Jim Collison 7:47
I love this idea that we're thinking through of how these, these, this Consistency, big "C," can lead to processes that really generate stability and really generate high-production environments. Like, predictable environments can be high-producing environments, right? Because we know, here's what we're doing; here's how we respond to it. And so we don't have to reinvent the wheel every time. This is, we do this consistently this way. So do it -- let's not spend a lot of time thinking about it. Right? Anything else that you'd add to that, as we think about creating those stable environments?
Jaclynn Robinson 8:26
Well, to your point, if the workplace is predictable, in terms of the way that people might produce products or services or results, then quality amplifies too, because everyone's in alignment of what quality looks like; because everyone's in alignment of what it takes to, you know, abide by norms or rules. So OK, this is, this is excellence, in terms of relationship-building within the workplace, or maybe there's certain rules and standards for how you create a product or service. And OK, now we're producing excellence, in terms of the quality work we're delivering, because we're all on the same page of the steps it takes to get there. So I think, to your point, I'd add on, it can increase productivity, because people know what's expected, but also quality because people are aligned.
How Could Consistency Hinder Your Leadership of Others?
Jim Collison 9:14
Yeah. Yeah. I think also, you know, with, with a greater emphasis and movement, as we talk, have talked about DEI, in the workplace, and, and bringing that to light -- we still have a lot of work to do there. But bringing that, those with this high talent of, of really bringing that, I mean, it comes at a passion, it comes at a, with a purpose. And we need to continue to push on that; we need to continue to work towards the -- it's not over. We have a lifetime of things to do to continue to make that work. And so, so, you know, we all need to be thinking about that. I think high Consistency can use that talent for good in this, and really make sure that we're thinking through, thinking through all those issues. What about hinder? As we think about how this, this might hinder in leadership, what do you see there?
Jaclynn Robinson 10:09
Some people in the workplace can feel really restricted by a set number of rules or guidelines or boundaries that they're expected to work or play within. So for folks that want to ideate or break through status quo to create change for employees or customers, this level of structure could create friction and restlessness. So that's just something that someone with Consistency would want to keep their eye on.
Jim Collison 10:33
Yeah, the report contains both of these -- a look at Helps and Hinders. And we have a whole, a whole list of action items for you on this. If you haven't checked out the CliftonStrengths for Leaders Report, probably now is the time to do that -- great opportunity for you to dig into it. We've been thinking about the, the 4 Needs, right, as we think about working with others. You alluded to this earlier, but let me ask you the question, again. As we think about this fitting into Hope, Stability, Compassion and Trust, where does that, where do you think that fits in? Where does it, what does it provide in that framework?
Jaclynn Robinson 11:10
Trust and, and Stability, with the predictability they create within the workplace, so everyone feels like they're treated fairly. And I think that can lend itself to Compassion. OK, everyone's getting a one-on-one conversation. Everyone's having a developmental conversation. This person really cares about us to make sure that everybody's getting it. So even going back to D, E and I, no one's left unseen or unheard, because there's a certain, there's a certain method, there's certain expectations.
Jim Collison 11:42
Unrep, unrepresented, I would add another, you know, to that. They're, they're being represented as, as part of the conversation. Had another question I was gonna ask you on that, and then that got overwhelmed. I got, I got overwhelmed a little. Oh, yeah. Thinking of that Compassion, I love, that was gonna be, I was gonna bring that, as I think this really brings -- by creating Stability, you're actually being, and, and fairness, you're actually being compassionate to people by giving them, it's this idea of Compassion, I think. I think sometimes, yeah, yeah. We are spending, spending some time this season thinking about this in the context of mixing it or combining it or report dynamic-ing it together with -- that's not a word.
Jaclynn Robinson 12:31
That's been so fun; I think that's the highlight of this.
How Can You Use Consistency as You Lead, Together With the Managers and Sales Reports?
Jim Collison 12:35
You kind of rocked my world a little bit. My brain is spinning here on this, so I may struggle talking for the rest of this. But as we think about this, in the context of the CliftonStrengths for Sales Report that we have, combining it with this, this Leader Report, what do you see there?
Jaclynn Robinson 12:51
I say this every time, but this is so fun to think about the Leadership Report and the Sales Report together. And to think about what would this person look like? So this leader might establish some set guidelines that they encourage or ask each sales rep to walk through in their sales cycle, in order to create a seamless, efficient and fair experience for every prospect or client. So for example, each sales rep might be expected to have a pitch that includes, Why buy anything? Why buy from you? Why buy now? You know, make sure that you're getting those "Why?" questions in. And, you know, we always say never start a question with "Why?" but if we're going back to sales, the 5 "Why's" or the three "Why's," you hear that often. So they might have that type of process. So this was a fun one for me to think about.
Jim Collison 13:39
Yeah, equal access, and, like, our, is our product designed or set up in a way, are we selling it in a way where, where it's, it's, it has equal access to those, to the community, to those around, so they can, they can actually participate in this, right? They can actually do --
Jaclynn Robinson 13:57
That's a good one!
Jim Collison 13:58
What we're doing right. I think bringing that, that air of Consistency, in thinking through that from a sales perspective. I think creating products is one thing; selling them is completely different, right, and, in those. So combining those two together, of thinking about both the creation of the product and then the market that it meets and then do people have fair access to it? Or do they have consistent access to it? Or do they have equal access to it? We can throw all those, those in there, thinking about it from, from that perspective. What about the Leader and the Manager, as we put those two together? What do you see there with those reports?
Jaclynn Robinson 14:40
As a manager, employees probably know that this individual is going to hold them to the same expectations and standards. So in this regard, employees probably find their manager to be really fair and consistent in their management style. Everyone's gonna get that one-on-one every quarter. Everyone needs to abide by the same rules. Everyone has performance metrics to hit, and so forth.
Jim Collison 15:03
Really great place to work, or a person to work for. Like I crave, even though I am all Adaptability, I am all Ideation, I am all Individualization, I crave a manager who has the Consistency bit down, right? And if you don't, if you're a leader and you don't have it, you've got to borrow it or find it or work on some processes that make it work -- partner, right, kind of partner with it. Doesn't mean, because not, you know, yeah, it doesn't mean you can, Well, sorry, that's just the way I roll. Well, you have to maybe roll a little different in some of these. I don't know. Any other, any other thoughts on that?
Jaclynn Robinson 15:43
I like what you said: You've got to borrow it or find somebody that has it. I think that actually even gets me thinking of, you know, as we start to wrap up Consistency, ways that they can continue to lean into this, or partners can, just based on what you just said, it gave me quite an insight. But I want to tuck it away for, for -- when I know that you're ready to wrap, then I'll bring out that nugget.
Jim Collison 16:07
One of the things -- yeah, I'll ask you it. So, so get ready. I'll ask you here in just a minute. But one of the things I think, as we, you mentioned this about taking these role-based reports and really, and I'm serious about putting them side by side and spending time with those that you're coaching -- or yourself -- to read these, these Helps and Hinder statements, and start to build through the lens of the action planning that's in them. "In my role, I'm going to --" so you can almost, you know, we got this idea of an individual development plan. It's available in our kits, if you don't have it. It's an easy concept, right? I generally have folks read through the Insight Statement Report, and then transfer those through the lens of a goal and push that downstream. What are some action items I'm going to do? I think taking these two reports, whether it's Sales and -- or Manager and Leader, or any combination of them, you can do whatever you want, right, with it. But thinking through, then, How do I, how do I push these through the lens of my leadership? And what are some Helps and Hinders in them? And then what are some goals that I have? And what am I going to do differently as a leader? And I, God, that just seems like a really great way to do that dynamically. And I just, I get excited when I see you get excited about putting these two together. And I think, like, yeah, we could do more of that. We absolutely could do.
Jaclynn Robinson 17:24
That is so fun! It really, it really gets your creative juices flowing of how you could see those show up in somebody.
Jim Collison 17:32
I think so. OK, wrap Consistency for us.
Jaclynn Robinson 17:35
Smart idea with having people combine reports and let -- homework, homework for you all. So what your comment actually made me think about was, you know, we'll ask questions in the workplace around engagement about fairness, equality, D, E and I. And a lot of times you'll hear employees talk about "fair." And what they really mean is, you know, I saw this person get a coaching session, and I didn't. I saw this person have a developmental conversation, and I didn't. Typically when you have an employee talking about "fair," what they mean is they want that equal opportunity, where they're all getting some of those, those standards and policies within the workplace fair -- that, everybody wants that. Everybody wants that consistency. And then within that actual conversation with their manager, they can individualize, based on their talents and strengths or, you know, all of you on the team are seeking this promotion. But this is what it takes to get there.
Jaclynn Robinson 18:36
So now here's the Individualization part too: Let's see where you're at. Do your skills currently align? Does your experience currently align? Have you hit the performance metrics necessary? So when you hear, oftentimes, an employee talk about, "This is fair" or "That's not fair," it typically goes back to that Consistency mindset of is this predictable? Is this standardized? Where everyone's having an equal opportunity to have that type of discussion or to have performance metrics, etc. So that's actually what you, you drove me to. So if you don't have that, who is that partner that has Consistency high or is really consistent and great at standardizing, so everyone feels like they're, they're treated fairly with workplace standards or policies or conversations?
Jim Collison 19:21
Love it. Love it.
Jaclynn Robinson 19:23
Jim Collison 19:23
By the way, this is a really hard thing to do. Like, I think sometimes we think, Well, I'll just set some rules. Nah. You got -- the same thing on the Individualization side; it's hard to do. Like, this is what makes great leaders great, I think, in a lot of ways is they, they're able, those with these high talent that have really honed it over time and, and exercised it in a way. It's just hard to do. And so don't, just setting standards, to think, well, you just set the standards. Well, it doesn't, it's really not, doesn't really work that way. And I think we all know that, but it is, it's, I think it's much harder. We need each other more on this, maybe than ever, right?
Jaclynn Robinson 20:04
Yes! I was just gonna say, I think you just highlighted and stamped the, the need to have Individualization and Consistency in the workplace. When I've seen them together, too, it happens, it's happened to be with HR professionals, where they have both in their Top 10. It's a beautiful thing.
Jim Collison 20:21
We need each other. I think it's a good way to wrap it. With that, we'll remind everyone take full advantage of all the resources we do have available in Gallup Access. Head out to gallup.com/cliftonstrengths and log in there. More resources coming there all the time. And so if you haven't been out there in a while, check in. Head out to the Resources tab -- menu upper left, drop it down, choose "Resources" and then search for Consistency, and everything we've done on it is posted there. Lots of resources -- hours, literally hours of resources for you to get caught up on. Stay up to date with all the webcasts by following us on Eventbrite. Go to gallup.eventbrite.com. Create an account, follow us there. You'll get an email whenever we post anything new, like this session, if you wanted to join us live. And then, of course, join us on any social platform by searching "CliftonStrengths," and we're everywhere. We are everywhere. So check it out. And we want to thank you for listening. Make sure you Like, Subscribe, Share -- all those other things that you need to do for social proof. We'd love it that you would. Thanks for listening today. If you are listening live, stay around for a little bit of a midshow. With that, we'll say, Goodbye, everybody.
Jaclynn Robinson's Top 5 CliftonStrengths are Achiever, Strategic, Maximizer, Positivity and Relator.
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