As human beings we are wired to focus on the negative more than the positive, we look for the deficit, the problem, and the “thing” that needs to improve.  Perhaps it comes from our inherent need to survive and to tune into those things that may threaten our ability to thrive.  Today’s show is guaranteed to give many helpful nuggets of wisdom about spotting, reinforcing, and applying our strengths both for our clients and for ourselves.

This summary show will focus on the several past interviews with experts in strength based assessments and positive psychology.  We discuss how to identify a person’s talents and skills and leverage them to flourish and thrive. Listen in to  top tips and takeaways from five previous guests on this topic surrounding two key tools: the Clifton Strengths Finder Assessment and the VIA Character Strength Survey. My guests include Dr. Ryan Niemiec, Megan McDonough, Jennifer Thornton, Brent O’Bannon, and Susan Chritton.

Show HIghlights:

  • From Dr. Ryan Niemiec, Educational Director of the VIA Institute on Character, author, psychologist, coach, and adjunct professor–Episode 31:
  • Character strengths are capacities we have to think, feel, and act
  • How 55 scientists went on a mission to find what’s best about human beings, and after a 3-year project, identified 24 core character strengths
  • The benefits of the strengths assessment in the coaching relationship
  • How coaches can coach, based on knowledge of their own strengths, and then see their clients through the lens of strength-spotting
  • From Megan McDonough, author, co-founder, and CEO of the Wholebeing Institute–Episode 19:
  • Why the narrative around strengths should be broadened in mental and physical ways
  • How coaches help clients identify and elevate their strengths to flourish in their lives
  • How an overall sense of well-being happens when we engage our strengths
  • To close today’s show, Megan explains ways to work against the negative bias in the brain, why positive emotions have a short half-life and the “Velcro/Teflon” qualities of the human brain
  • From Jennifer Thornton, professional business coach and Certified Clifton Strengths Coach–Episode 49:
  • Her focus on finding cultural similarities across the globe instead of focusing on cultural differences
  • How differing strengths on a team can complement each other in goal-setting to accomplish specific tasks and projects
  • Connecting the dots of individual team members’ strengths to work together strategically
  • How engagement, productivity, and profit increase when team members use their strengths daily
  • How strengths apply to the interview process and convert to confidence
  • From Brent O’Bannon, author, business owner, and Certified Clifton Strengths Coach–Episode 77:
  • How strengths apply to authentic business and marketing strategies for coaches
  • Brent’s three-step process to grow stronger, work smarter, and live richer: maximize, mobilize, and monetize strengths
  • Why coaches need to grow their money mindset
  • From Susan Chritton, author of Personal Branding for Dummies–Episode 39:
  • How to maximize strengths to build your brand
  • Susan’s key tip about branding: Be your authentic self and bring out the best in yourself


31: Character Strength Coaching with Ryan M. Niemiec

19: Coaching and Positive Psychology with Megan McDonough