The Art of Strengths Coaching

F is for The Fulfilment Model And The Factory Model

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There are many philosophies about the purpose of life. The philosophy that a person – or a society – embraces influences how they relate to people. This article looks at two different approaches.

The Fulfilment Model

This approach aims is to encourage people to fulfil their potential and use their energy to serve others. It may be followed by individuals, schools, teams or organisations.

Looking back, can you recall a time when you have seen or experienced this approach? You may have been on the receiving end of it when being encouraged by a parent, teacher, coach or other person.

What did the person or group do to translate the approach into action? They may have aimed to help you to pursue your passion, follow your vocation, build on your strengths or whatever.

What were the outcomes? How did you feel? What did you do as a result of seeing or experiencing the approach?

Looking at my own life, for example, I have met many people who have followed this approach. Alec and Mora Dickson were two such people.

Alec believed that people often showed their best qualities when giving to others. This led him founding Voluntary Service Overseas and Community Service Volunteers. It was CSV that gave me my first opportunity to work with people.

Alec and Mora

Leaving school at fifteen, I worked in a factory for six years. Eventually I managed to get a job in an office, but I still wanted to do work that helped people. After a lot of research, I got an interview with CSV.

Travelling to their office in London in 1967, I had no idea how my life would change. During the visit to Toynbee Hall I had a promising meeting with Elisabeth Hoodless, who was later to lead CSV. Alec then introduced himself to me.

The things he said struck an immediate chord. He believed that every person had strengths. My lack of education did not matter, he said, because I had something to give.

Treating me as if I was extremely intelligent, he explained the philosophy behind VSO and CSV.

“We need to tap into people’s desire to build a better world.

“I believe that young people have enormous idealism and, at the same time, there are many unmet needs in society.

“So why not match these two together? We can use the young people’s energy to meet those needs and build a better world.”

Alec believed that the giver often received as much as the receiver. Why? Our self fades into the background when we are giving, yet we often feel more real afterwards.

Leaving the meeting, I floated along the pavement. Elisabeth and Alec had promised me they would find a place for me to serve.

They gave me the opportunity to become a housefather for mentally handicapped children. Since that day I have been fortunate enough to do fulfilling work.

You may have had your own experience of seeing elements of the fulfilment approach in action. As mentioned earlier, this may have been with a person, school, team or organisation.

If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to do the following things.

Describe a specific example of when you have seen or experienced the approach.

Describe the specific things that people – a person or group – did to translate the approach into action.

Describe the specific outcomes that happened as a result of this experience.

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The Factory Model

This approach aims is to encourage people to go through the factory and use their energy to serve the economy. It may be followed by individuals, schools, teams or organisations.

Many people are familiar with this approach. It is implemented by societies and organisations that see human beings as economic units.

There is little point in adding to the critiques of this approach. Many describe how schooling has replaced education, for example, with an industrial model.

The Factory Model falls down, however, when aiming to nurture people with what are called 21st Century Skills. These are the Four Cs: Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration and Communication. People and organisations need such skills to thrive in a fast changing world.

You may have seen or experienced the factory approach in action. It may have been applied by individuals, teachers, managers, organisations or whatever.

If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to do the following things.

Describe a specific example of when you have seen or experienced the approach.

Describe the specific things that people – a person or group – did to translate the approach into action.

Describe the specific outcomes that happened as a result of this experience.

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The Fulfilment Model
In The Future

Looking to the future, can you think of any situations where you might like to encourage people to fulfil their potential and serve others?

You may wish to do this as a parent, teacher, coach, manager or whatever. Alternatively, you may wish to create something that helps people to translate their ideals into action.

Nick Askew is somebody who has taken this step. He created Conservation Careers. This is a website that enables people to find work in which they can help wildlife to flourish.

Here is an excerpt from the website. You can discover more via the following link.

http://www.conservation-careers.com/

Conservation Careers

We believe that all wildlife is beautiful, and that it deserves great conservationists working to protect it.

We have an extensive international knowledge, experience and network of contacts within the conservation career sector.

This means that we can help job seekers and conservation organisations to form lasting relationships.

We do this by providing careers advice and information to a network of dedicated conservationists across the globe.

Nick has built a huge resource for people who want to follow their passion. The website lists opportunities all across the world. These include jobs in the following fields.

Climate Change … Communications … Ecological Consultancy … Environmental Economics … Environmental Education … Fundraising & Development … Information & Data Management … Mapping & Geographic Information Systems … Marine Conservation … Marketing.

Organisational Management … Ornithology … Photography and Filmmaking … PhDs … Policy & Advocacy … Post-Doctorate Work … Programme Management … Project Management … Ranger Work … Science & Research … Warden Work.

Different people choose different ways to follow the fulfilment approach. If you wish, try tackling the exercise on this theme. This invites you to do the following things.

Describe a specific example in the future when you may want to encourage people – a person or group – to fulfil their potential and serve others.

Describe the specific things you can do to follow this approach.

Describe the specific outcomes that may happen as a result of you following this approach.

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