Gallup CliftonStrengths® is an assessment of personality, rooted in the theory of positive psychology. Research indicates that people who know and use their strengths every day are more likely to experience positive emotions (energy, happiness, respect) and less likely to experience negative emotions (stress, worry, anger, sadness). The assessment identifies an individual’s top five “Signature Themes” from a list of 34 common talents. Individuals can then develop those talents into strengths, and apply those strengths in all areas of their life.
Overview of the Analytical Strength
If you had a catchphrase, it would be “Prove it.” You challenge people to back up their statements with facts and are wary of anyone who makes decisions based on a gut feeling. Before making your own decisions, you need to gather as much data as possible. You carefully consider every angle, using data to identifying previously unseen patterns and connections, dive deeper into reasons and causes, and bring structure to your decision-making process. Your passion for meticulous analysis, however, can also be your downfall, at times paralyzing your ability to take action.
Action Items for the Analytical Strength
Choose the right job. You thrive in positions that require careful analysis to identify patterns and organize ideas. Consider work in financial research, market research or risk management, fields that will reward your passion for rigorous objectivity. Avoid subjective assignments.
Pick the right partner. To reduce “analysis paralysis,” align yourself with a coworker who has a strong Activator theme and will help you turn data into decisions. If you struggle to meet project deadlines, establish firm milestones with this coworker for data gathering, data analysis, and decision making.
Be open to non-empirical information. For a more robust decision-making process, do not automatically discount colleagues with the Belief or Empathy themes. Their intuitive insights can be valuable – even without hard data – and may lead to better outcomes.
Find an outlet for your Analytical skills. If your passion for analysis is not fulfilled professionally, you can become frustrated and resentful at work. Consider volunteering your time with a non-profit that could benefit from your ability to organize large volumes of data, such as helping to set up a donation database.
How to Manage Someone with the Analytical Strength
Facts, figures, numbers: your Analytical employee has never met a piece of information they didn’t want to dissect. That’s great when there’s time for careful data collection and evaluation. Other times, this seemingly insatiable need for robust analysis and logical understanding can trigger decision making paralysis– causing your employee to miss deadlines and drag the team down with them. Worse, their frequent challenges to coworkers to back up assertions with facts can destabilize group dynamics. To keep your Analytical employee engaged and leverage their talents, try the following:
Help them balance analysis with action. Before assigning a new project, set your employee up for success. Consider the timeline: do they have sufficient time to think deeply about data and make connections? Consider their teammates: will these coworkers respect their analysis process while still pushing towards constructive action? When deadlines are tight, try pairing your Analytical employee with Activators.
Help them understand processes and decisions. When introducing a new process, walk your employee through each step. It may feel like you’re over-explaining, but your employee will appreciate this level of methodical detail. When announcing a decision, include credible supporting data. Doing so will bolster your employee’s confidence in your leadership skills and minimize potential resistance to this decision.
Help them meet deadlines. For your Analytical employee, accuracy often trumps time management. As their supervisor, be firm about deadlines and use smaller milestones as a yardstick for assessing project pacing.
Help them stay engaged. Your Analytical employee lives to discover patterns in data and find reason in numbers. Give them the chance to explain these patterns to you, even if you feel this level of detail is unnecessary. Praise their critical reasoning skills and keep them plugged into projects that will benefit from their passion for data.
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