While I was away, I spent time reflecting on what I’m doing both in and out of work, although to be honest, the line is often a bit blurred between the two settings! We’re coming up to 6 months of being in post for Our Place Camelon and Tamfourhill so it seemed as good a time as any to reflect.
It is said that you will know that your job is your ‘calling’ when you do what you love, and love what you do. Philanthropist and industrialist Andrew Carnegie said:
‘The average person puts only 25% of their energy and ability into their work. The world takes off its hat to those who put in more than 50% and stands on its head for those few and far-between souls who devote 100%.’
He obviously never knew candidates for “The Apprentice” who routinely say they give 110% or more!
You may be totally set on what your strengths are and may also be in the enviable position of living them out in what you do. That’s brilliant. But you may also be at the other end of the scale where you haven’t got a clue what you want to do or even what you could do.
To me help in this, I took a strengths test at www.high5test.com which helps you discover what you are naturally good at. I’d really recommend this test that will take about 15-20 minutes to complete. You’ll be shown a list of statements describing a certain behaviour and all you have to do is move the slider along the scale from 0% on the left to 100% on the right. Research shows that when we use our strengths, we’re happier, more engaged and more likely to achieve our goals. This doesn’t just benefit you, but also people, groups, teams and organisations that you’re around and involved with. Stats back this up too, as an average of 74% of people who have a chance to use their strengths are more engaged.
So what were my High 5 strengths? Well, I was quite pleased with the results as it backs up why I thought doing this job would be a good idea! Of course, these questionnaire things can sometimes be a bit subjective and our answers can be determined by our current situation, but I tried to answer as honestly as possible. My strengths, together with the headline description (there’s more background in the results you’ll get) are:
- My objective is to develop people’s potential;
- My objective is to believe and to do the ‘right thing’;
- Problem Solver
- My objective is to solve problems;
- My objective is to act and to initiate action;
- My objective is to see the big picture.
I’m not sharing this to show off or anything like that at all. This is purely showing you what is possible from these kind of questionnaires. Whether you’re just starting out with looking for work, getting going again now the kids are sorted, or have been forced to rethink following a lockdown redundancy, finding your strengths is a great place to start. Stop focusing on what you can’t do and discover what you can do. The short video below explains that further.
When you believe that what you do makes a difference, you have a different feeling about what you do. I am certainly beginning to see my work make a difference and if I can help any of you along that journey too, even to guide you through this strengths process, then that would be great. Give me a shout and let’s make it happen. You’ll get me (Dan Rous) at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07444 873151.