Presentation on theme: "A Retreat & Teambuilding Experience With Robyn McKay, PhD Arizona State University www.robynmckay.com."— Presentation transcript:
A Retreat & Teambuilding Experience With Robyn McKay, PhD Arizona State University
The science of positive emotions, positive character traits, positive experiences, and positive institutions (Seligman & Csikszentmihalyi, 2000) Research from positive psychology is intended to supplement (not replace) information about human suffering, weakness, and disorder (Seligman, Steen, Park, & Peterson, 2005)
Robert Emmons, PhD “Thanks!” Sonja Lyubomirsky, PhD “The How of Happiness” Tal Ben-Shahar, PhD “Happier!”
Happy people are more likely than their less happy peers to have fulfilling marriages and relationships high incomes superior work performance community involvement robust health a long life (Lyubomirsky et al, 2005)
First, be happy. Happiness creates the conditions for success to arise, not the other way around. (Lyubomirsky et al, 2005)
But…how do you be happy?
Take 5 minutes to write about one of the best people that you know: someone who is living a happy, productive life. What characteristics does he or she have? What is his or her life like? Compare your findings with your neighbor. How are your observations similar or different ?
What the Best People Do We all have natural talents Leaders spend a lot of time practicing what they are already good at They don’t spend a lot of time trying to improve their weaknesses People who are great at what they do are decidedly *not * well rounded
Focusing on what’s right: a pathway to happiness
A history lesson The Gallup Organization identified over 400 different themes of talent by studying top achievers 34 of the most prevalent talent themes are measured in StrengthsFinder StrengthsFinder is a psychometrically solid instrument
StrengthsQuest A strength is the ability to provide consistent, near- perfect performance in a given activity To build a strength: Identify a talent Then refine it with skills and knowledge
StrengthsQuest Based on a general model of positive psychology, and captures 4 factors: Personal motivation (Striving/Executing) Interpersonal skills (Relationship Building) Self-presentation (Influencing) Learning Style (Strategic Thinking)
Excellence Our talents hold the key to excellence Talent + practice + knowledge = strength To be excellent, you need to have a clear vision about what excellence is, what it looks like, and what is required to reach it. Trying to be well-rounded diffuses your talents To become excellent, choose one or two talents to focus on
What was it like to take the assessment? Review the descriptions of your signature themes Ask: “What fits for me?” Which themes do you really like? Find a partner and talk about which themes suit you
But…shouldn’t I focus on improving my weaknesses?
Exercise #3: What do your strengths “sound like”? With a partner, take a few minutes to talk about how you each express your strengths
The Four Domains of Leadership Strength The Beehive Model of Strengths (Kerr & McKay) Worker Bees: The Experts (Executing) Queens: The Visionaries (Influencing) Honeybees : The Helpers (Relationship Building) Drones : The Innovators (Strategic Thinking) Sustain the cultureTransform the cultureSweeten the cultureFertilize the culture AchieverActivatorAdaptabilityAnalytical ArrangerCommandConnectednessContext BeliefCommunicationEmpathyFuturistic ConsistencyMaximizerHarmonyIdeation DeliberativeSelf-AssuranceIncluderInput DisciplineSignificanceIndividualizationIntellection FocusWooPositivityLearner Responsibility Competition RelatorStrategic Restorative Developer
Exercise #3: Gathering Identify which parts of the hive your strengths fall into Remember: you might be a hybrid! Choose one segment to focus on Gather with others in your area of the hive Answer these questions: What do we have to offer? What do we need from those in the other parts of the hive?
Final Thoughts Every organization is a hive Know your bees Focus on developing your strengths There are no satisfactory psychometric fixes for social injustice, stereotype threat, culture, and gender bias Just because someone is smart, creative, or has strengths doesn’t make them a good person. Kindness and compassion are just as important to cultivate
Final thoughts It’s hard to get out of your own area of the hive and understand the needs of colleagues who are different from you Respecting the differences among your colleagues and understanding the nature of various forms of gifts and strengths can lead to a positive, innovative work environment
To schedule a “What’s Right With You?” Retreat & Teambuilding Experience Contact Dr. Robyn McKay Tel: or