July 23, 2019

Believing in your strengths

A student at a university open day

What is Strength-based learning?

Strength-based learning is a psychology research which focuses on what students do well, just like the Clifton Strengths Assignment known as the Gallup test.

The Gallup test

Having taken the Gallup strength assessment at university in Level 3, I discovered that my strengths are as a Learner; I have a great desire to gain knowledge and want to continuously develop. Being a Developer I am able to spot the signs of each improvement and derive satisfaction from these improvements. Activator, I turn my thoughts into action. I have also been constantly keen and aware of the need to treat people the same.

What did you learn at GSM London?

In Practice being a learner is a basic ability for me to perform,  as the ability to operate a computer this does not naturally exist for me. I acquired these skills through training and practice. For instance we were asked as event students, to build a website and follow a step by step guideline. As a leaner, I asked many questions whenever I was stuck and managed to complete building the website.

What are your strengths?

In Practice as a developer I see the potential in others very often, in fact, potential is all I see. In my view no individual is fully formed. On the contrary, each individual is a work in progress. This includes me, I am alive with possibilities. When I interact with others, my goal is to help them experience success; I look for ways to challenge people. I devise interesting experiences that can stretch people and help them grow.

Strengths and satisfaction

This brings me to my strengths and satisfaction. Over time many will seek me out of the lecture room, or while walking by the University as a student Rep for help, and encouragement because on some level they know that my helpfulness is both genuine and fulfilling to me.
I can be impatient for action as an activator. I may concede that analysis has its uses or that debate and discussion can occasionally yield some valuable insights, but deep down inside of me, I know that only action is real. Only action can make things happen. Only action leads to performance. For instance a decision has been made to go across town; I know that the fastest way to get there is to go stoplight to stoplight. I do not sit around waiting until all the lights have turned green. Besides, in my view, action and thinking are not opposites. I believe that action is the best device for learning. I make a decision, I take action. How can you grow if you have nothing to react to? Well, You must put yourself out there. You must take the next step. It is the only way to keep your thinking fresh and informed.

What does balance mean to you?

Balance is important to me. Keenly aware of the need to treat people the same, no matter what their situation in life, I do not want to see the scales tipped too far in any one person’s favour. In my view this leads to selfishness and individualism. It leads to a world where some people gain an unfair advantage because of their connections or their background this is truly unpleasant to me. I see myself as a warden against it. In direct contrast to this world of special favours, I believe that people function best in a consistent environment where the rules are clear and are applied to everyone equally.

Did Strength-based learning help you?

Strength-based learning has helped me to discover myself more and motivate me to keep going. It has also helped me to use techniques that play to my strength even when I am learning new skills.

Was Strength-based learning useful?

I have improved my communication by explaining more, by describing, by hosting, speaking in public and  writing. Ideas are a dry beginning, events have substance. They happen at a specific place and time. I am able to use communication to turn events into stories and practice telling them. Information is very important to me whether it is an idea, an event, a product’s features and benefits, a discovery or a lesson to survive. People like to listen to me, to inspire them to act by influencing them through communication and teamwork.

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