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October 2019
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performance

A New Way for New Year’s Resolutions in 2013

Posted by: Nicky Garcea & Alex Linley

 

One in four New Year’s resolutions are broken in the first week, that is 7 days – at most – since they were made. A New Year’s resolution is a new ‘intent’. It’s been shown that people who commit explicitly to a goal - particularly if it’s written down – are more likely to achieve those goals.

 

But for whatever reason, that doesn’t appear to hold as well when it comes to New Year’s resolutions.

 

One of the issues that crops up with New Year’s resolutions is that, by their very nature, they tend to focus on things that we are not yet doing. Or things that we are doing and want to stop doing. This is likely to mean that we are either trying to change a habit, or we’re trying to build on a weakness, neither of which is easy.

 

And further, as strengths psychologists, we know that when people try to build on weaknesses, they rarely succeed. True progress and performance only comes through strengths.

 

Similarly, the issue with changing a habit is that habits exist for very good reasons. They have come about because they are shortcuts, the natural ways in which we have come to do things. They are effortless, they feel natural, they don’t require us to think, to plan, to change.

 

As a result, staying with our existing habits is pretty much the opposite of what we’re trying to do when we introduce a New Year’s resolution.

 

This New Year, there is an opportunity to make your resolutions differently. With over 55,000 now having completed Realise2, our online strengths identification and development tool, we know that no two people have an identical profile.

 

Our individual strengths, and their myriad possible combinations and dynamics when combined with each other, provide rich ground for us to explore in making our New Year’s resolutions for 2013.

 

As you do so, ask yourself these three simple questions to create strong resolutions that will make the most of your unique strengths:

 

1. Which of my realised strengths most readily relate to my New Year’s resolutions? (E.g., Curiosity will help with taking a professional course, Persistence will be more use in helping you to quit smoking, and Adventure will be powerful in inspiring you to strike out with a new career direction).

 

2. Which of my unrealised strengths can I use more to help me achieve my New Year’s resolutions? (The opportunity you have here is to create new habits by using strengths you haven’t used so much before).

 

3. What are the strengths dynamics that might help or hinder me in what I want to achieve? (What are the links between strengths that will turbo-charge these strengths in combination? Are there dynamics that might get in the way of you delivering your best performance? This is where a deeper dive into the unique potential of your Realise2 profile comes into its own).

 

Work on using your strengths more to achieve your goals (in this case, your 2013 New Year’s resolutions). You’ll find that you are happier, more confident, more resilient, less stressed and more likely to be effective in getting what you want.

 

As remarkable as it is, these are all benefits that follow from using your strengths more, as documented across a series of studies from ourselves and others.

 

So, to make 2013 your year, the best advice is to work on achieving your New Year’s resolutions through harnessing the performance power of your strengths.

 

And, for the technophiles amongst you, a bonus: Consider if you can use one of the best apps for the most common things we try to do around this time every year…

 

Happy New Year!

 

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Realise2 – Capp’s Leading Edge Strengths Assessment and Development Tool

Posted by: Alex Linley

 

As many readers of The Capp Blog will know, Realise2 is Capp’s leading edge strengths assessment and development tool. It works by assessing 60 different strengths according to the three dimensions of performance, energy and use.

 

The results are then combined to determine where each attribute falls, into one of the four quadrants of the Realise2 4M Model, which are:

 

Realised strengths – high energy, high performance, high use

 

Unrealised strengths – high energy, high performance, lower use

 

Learned behaviours – lower energy, high performance, variable use

 

Weaknesses – lower energy, lower performance, variable use.

 

The 4 “Ms” of the Realise2 4M Model describe the advice that applies for optimal performance and development in each of these quadrants:

 

Marshal realised strengths – use them appropriately for your situation and context

 

Maximise unrealised strengths – find opportunities to use them more

 

Moderate learned behaviours – use them in moderation and only when you need to

 

Minimise weaknesses – use them as little as possible and only where necessary.

 

With over 50,000  people having now taken Realise2, here at Capp we have a wealth of experience and insight into how people use the Realise2 4M Model in practice, as well as the different strengths dynamics, interplays and combinations that come about. Most important of all, we know what these mean and the impact they have for you when it matters.

 

To share these insights and experiences with you, our loyal readers of The Capp Blog, we will be showcasing some of our most intriguing experiences and insights of Realise2 with you in an occasional series of forthcoming blogs.

 

If you’re not familiar with Realise2, you can find out more about the tool, including sample reports and purchase options, from the Realise2 website.

 

Watch this space for future insights, tips and techniques on Realise2, and let us know if you have areas of particular interest that you would like us to cover. Post your question or comment in the Comment section below.

 

 

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The Intersection of Strengths, Strategy and Situation

Posted by: Alex Linley & Nicky Garcea

 

We’re delighted to give you a sneak preview into our forthcoming chapter in Coaching for Leadership (3rd ed.), edited by Marshall Goldsmith, Laurence S. Lyons and Sarah McArthur, which publishes tomorrow!

 

In our chapter, “Three Types of Hi-Po and the Realise2 4M Model: Coaching at the Intersection of Strengths, Strategy and Situation”, we examine the question of “what else” is needed for strengths to be truly successful and deliver performance, as well as exploring three types of hi-po that we have come across in our work on top talent (more on the three types of hi-po in a later blog post).

 

As a reader of The Capp Blog, you’re likely to know that using your strengths will help you to be successful. Correct. But for real and sustainable success, we argue in our Coaching for Leadership chapter that we need to go further.

 

To explain this, we developed the 3S-P Model, which shows how Strengths need to be used in service of Strategy, while also having an awareness of Situation (the “3S” part), which then make it much more likely that we will deliver performance (hence the “3S-P” in the model).

 

Think about it like this:

 

Strengths used in the absence of context (i.e., Situation) and direction (i.e., Strategy) are just hobbies. They are things that we do well and enjoy doing, but they might not really make a great difference if what we are doing is wrong for our environment, or doesn’t fit with what we want to achieve.

 

Strategy in the absence of environmental awareness (i.e., Situation) and an understanding of the capabilities to deliver it (i.e., Strengths) is just a wish upon a star. We might know where we want to get to, but if we don’t know where we are at the moment, or the capabilities that we have to help us get to our future destination, we’re unlikely to reach our goal.

 

Situation knowledge provides context, but in the absence of a direction of travel (i.e., Strategy) and a means to get there (i.e., Strengths), it is just wallpaper – providing a nice backdrop to what is going on around us. We know where we are, but we don’t have enough about us to be clear on where we want to get to, or how we will get there.

 

Yet, when we bring these three factors together, we get each of the necessary foundation blocks: an understanding of where we are now  (Situation), where we want to get to and the direction of travel to get us there (Strategy) and the capability to help us make the journey (Strengths). These three together help us deliver Performance. In this way, we define the 3S-P Model.

 

So, when you’re working on how to achieve what matters to you, remember the secrets of the 3S-P Model. Understand your Situation, be clear on your Strategy, and harness your Strengths to get there. At the intersection of Strengths, Strategy and Situation is where Performance lies.

 

Check out our chapter in Coaching for Leadership to read more about the 3S-P Model and to explore the three types of hi-po (and watch out for our future blog post on this as well!).

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What is Strengths-based Performance Management?

There are two core elements to any performance process: performance measurement and performance management.

 

Performance measurement is concerned with how we track, monitor, record and measure the outcomes of performance. The emphasis should always be on outcomes – what the person achieves – rather than inputs, which relate to how they got there.

 

Performance management is about the conversation that supports the performance. How we set goals, work to achieve those goals, receive feedback and calibrate along the way. Managers have a crucial role to play in effective performance management, since they help (or hinder) us in delivering our best performance.

 

Strengths-based performance management puts strengths at the heart of this process. When people use their strengths they are more likely to achieve their goals and objectives, as well as gaining a host of other benefits.

 

The central premise of strengths-based performance management is that using strengths is the best way to achieve outcomes. Hence, the measurement is still always focused on outcomes, but the management will be more focused on harnessing strengths.

 

As you’d expect, we put this into practice in our own work at Capp, using a balanced scorecard that links individual objectives to our corporate strategy. Each objective has a strength aligned to it, so each member of the team is encouraged to use their strengths as the best way to achieving their objectives.

 

With strengths linked to objectives in this way, it also becomes easier to highlight where people might need help, so we use the Realise2 4M Model to align strengths and goals across the team, using complementary partnerships and strengths-based team working to achieve more together than would ever be possible on our own.

 

After all, as the late, great Peter Drucker prophesied in The Effective Executive in 1967, “the unique purpose of organization is to make strength productive…one cannot build on weakness.”

 

Despite this, many companies thought for many years that measuring performance against generic competencies was the answer to everything. But the times they are a’changin… There is a better way, as strengths-based performance management shows.

 

What are your performance management experiences?

 

Share your comments on The Capp Blog and let us know if you get to use your strengths at work, or if your company is stuck in a competency mindset of everyone being good at everything (tip: they’re not, however hard they try).

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