The Art of Strengths Coaching

P is for Choosing To Take A Positive Role That Helps People To Achieve Their Picture Of Success

There are many ways to help people. One approach is for a person to choose to take a positive role that helps other people to succeed.

Different people take this approach in different ways. Here are some ways that they may choose to take this step.

They may take a positive role in their personal life by being an encourager, carer, friend or taking another role that helps people to succeed.

They may take a positive role in their professional life by working as an educator, nurse, counsellor, leader or taking another role that helps people to succeed.

They may take a positive role in their organisation by acting as a supportive colleague, trusted advisor, mediator or taking another role that helps people to succeed.  

One person chose to take this latter approach during team meetings in their organisation. They explained this in the following way.

Our senior team meetings had become chaotic. We should have spent the time focusing on how to work together to achieve the organisation’s goals. But instead the session often descended into turf wars.

Looking ahead, I decided to take the role of positive supporter in the meetings. This meant rehearsing ahead of time – just like I would before meeting a client – and being a calming presence in the session. This called for being able: 

To have a positive attitude, show people I was listening and show respect for their different views.

To build on what people had in common – such as their desire to help the organisation to be successful.

To suggest positive ways forward – such as how it was possible to get some quick successes – and encourage people to work towards the organisation’s goals.

It took time, but I began to be seen as a trusted advisor within the business. This is a role I enjoy taking in both my personal and my professional life.

Looking back at your own life, can you think of a situation when you chose to take a positive role? This could have been in your personal or professional life.

What was the role you chose to take? What did you do to aim to be positive in this role? What happened as a result of taking this role?

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

Describe a specific situation in the past when you chose to take a positive role. 

Describe the specific things you did then to aim to be positive in this role.

Describe the specific things that happened as a result of taking these steps.

Different people choose different ways to take positive roles. Sometimes they create a new kind of role. Sometimes they use their strengths to play one of the classical roles.

The latter approach may involve them pursuing one of the traditional themes. They may choose to be a carer, educator, counsellor, healer, mediator, artist, engineer, designer, problem solver, prototype builder or take another role.

Some people develop by learning from others who have mapped out the potential roles people can play in their personal or professional lives. They then aim to do positive work in such a role.

During the 1980s, for example, many people learned from the work done by Meridith Belbin. He produced the ground breaking book Management Teams: Why they succeed or fail.

At the time it was thought that the teams with the highest intellect would be the most successful. His work provided another approach. The official Belbin site outlines the following characteristics that emerged.

The most successful teams tended to be those with a mix of different people who combined a range of different behaviours.

These teams comprised of eight distinct clusters of behaviour. These were called Team Roles. A ninth role emerged from later research.

Here is a brief introduction to the various roles. You can explore these in greater detail via the following link to the official Belbin website.

Belbin Team Roles

Let’s return to your own life and work. Looking ahead, can you think of a positive role you would like to take in the future? This could be in your personal or professional life.

Whatever role you choose, it can be useful to build on your strengths. Bearing this in mind, it can be useful to ask the following questions.

What are my strengths? What is the role in which I can use my strengths to help people? How can I build on my strengths and do my best to help people in this role?

You may want to be a carer, encourager, educator, counsellor, trusted advisor, artist designer, pioneer, leader or take another professional role. You may want to help individuals, teams or a wider group of people.

What is the role you want to take? How can you do your best in this role? How can you help other people to succeed? What may happen as a result?

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

Describe a specific situation in the future when you may choose to take a positive role.

Describe the specific things you can do then to aim to be positive in this role.

Describe the specific things that may happen as a result of taking these steps.

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>