The Rules for a Strengths-Based Philosophy
A Strong Foundation to Unlock Your Strengths for Success
It is often analogized that to build a stable building, that will last, you must first construct a strong foundation. Establishing a firm foundation is key to longevity and successful functionality in almost everything that we do. This is true for relationships, work projects and philosophies of all types whether they be religious or other life doctrines. Without a solid foundation, the things that we build are destined to perform poorly and, very often, do not last.
Near, where I live, in Pasadena, near Los Angeles, there are, of course, many freeways that crisscross the area taking millions of automobiles to and from their destinations. Close to my house, there is probably one of the worst freeway interchanges in the entire county and probably the whole state of California. The interchange is always congested because of limited lanes and multiple intersections that converge at the same location. Coming from the East Coast, I found most of the freeway designs in California to be quite remarkable especially with the large number of cars that travers these roadways daily. However, once I learned the history of this particular freeway, the reason for the mess became quite evident. I learned that the original path of the freeway had been altered.
Built in the 1960’s, the freeway route became marred in controversy and was eventually rerouted through the poorer, minority neighborhoods and thus avoiding the more affluent nonminority neighborhoods of Pasadena. This new configuration required the traffic engineers to design the freeway interchange with fewer lanes and to directly intersect with multiple downtown access ramps. While in the early years after construction, this was a manageable solution. However, now in 2017, with traffic flows at an all-time high, this configuration is a constant nightmare. With a shameful rational that served as the foundation for the decision that determined the path of the freeway has directly caused the congestion problems of today and has left no reasonable options to mitigate the problem. Having strong foundations are important and all solid foundations start with a set of rules and values that ensure longevity and success.
In almost all aspects of our life, we follow a set of rules that keep us on the right path. They keep us focused and help us make the right decisions. Some rules are of an official nature like laws, regulations and ordinances. Others tend to take the form of policies and guidelines. And then there are the unwritten rules that guide our morality and personal interactions.
Some years ago, I was in to recreational boating which later evolved into a charter boat business venture. This journey lead me to get my “Captain’s” license to operate a motor vessel for hire. The key to obtaining the license was mastering the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea. The Navigation Rules govern how all seagoing vessels operate the oceans and waterways all over the world with the primary purpose of avoiding collisions.
There are a total of 37 Rules that govern everything from rights of way, navigation in limited visibility and how to read lights and signals. What makes these rules so amazing is that they govern all vessels from all countries in all languages globally. What’s even more amazing is the level and capacity that these rules are and have been effective for decades which is a testament as to the success that these rules have had as the foundation for the safe voyages of countless seagoing vessels.
In almost all facets of our life we have rules. In sports, while driving and in business there are rules that if not followed have consequences. Even superman, in the comic books has rules. If he didn’t follow his doctrine of fighting for “truth, justice and the American way” then he would be a prime candidate to just take over the world.
Just as in these parts of our life, there are rules that enhance and guide our experience while implementing a strengths-based approach to management, team building and leadership development. Here at V1H Consulting, we have compiled a set of rules that, when followed, will ensure that leaders, managers, small business owners, entrepreneurs and individuals that wish to break through barriers, build solid teams and live stronger with conviction and purpose have a solid foundation to work from. V1H Consulting has dubbed these rules as “The Golden Keys to Unlocking Strengths for Success”.
The Golden Keys are affirmations of the work required to fully be engaged in the strengths journey. These keys provide conscious reminders of what we must understand, what we must tell ourselves, what we must seek out, and what we must do in order to be fully vested. They can serve as sources of support in moments of stress, challenge, strain and whenever we are at risk of slipping into old habits, outdated thinking and unhelpful patterns.
The first of the Golden Keys to Unlocking Strengths for Success is: “Always look for the best in people”. This rule also applies to yourself. The concept of applying a strengths-based philosophy starts here. When you look for the what is best in people, you will see what they have to offer to the team and the organization as a whole. When you focus on each person’s strengths and manage around their weaknesses, you will help them to become the best of who they are. Tom Rath, the author of Strengths Finder 2.0, notes that society’s relentless focus on people’s shortcomings has turned into a global obsession. He goes on to point out that people have several times more potential for growth when they invest energy in developing their strengths instead of correcting their deficiencies.
StrengthsFinder is built on a positive psychology. It’s what is good, right and wonderful about people. Your Strengths exist when you are at your best. Following rules provides us the guide post that keep us on track. The Golden Keys provide consistency and regularity and will serve as a strong foundation in unlocking your strengths for success.