It is hard work being a human. It is hard work understanding fellow humans and meaningfully connecting with diversity. Yet, we desire to understand and to be understood. We desire connection at home and in the workplace. We do not want the status quo. We want to thrive. Our hearts were designed for honor and acceptance.

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“Culture” is defined by Webster’s dictionary as “the characteristic features of everyday existence shared by people in a place or time.” If you are an executive or manager, what kind of “culture” do you want to foster in your workplace? If you are an employee, what kind of culture will you look for when deciding on a job?

In my work as a Gallup certified Strengths Coach, I help people discover their innate talent. One of the best parts of my job is watching the look on a face that realizes for the first time a set of words that perfectly describes their natural tendencies. Many people go through their entire life not feeling validated for who they are. There are some who only see through a lens of comparison or “assumed value” from childhood.

More than a decade ago, Gallup unveiled the results of a landmark 30 year research project led by Donald Clifton that ignited a global conversation on the topic of human talent and strength. The result was a way of helping people see themselves in a positive light, and helping them realize the empowerment that comes when they thrive in their strengths. We become more efficient and productive, and have greater confidence, direction and hope.

A remarkable result of applying a “strengths perspective” in the workplace is that it naturally creates a “culture of honor.” When I know my strengths, and understand how they can be applied, I work with greater confidence and energy. When I understand my colleague’s strengths, it helps me appreciate what they bring to the table, and it creates a synergy that is based more on leveraging strengths instead of enduring a negative culture of comparison.

Perhaps this is why Gallup discovered that people who know their talents and have the opportunity to use them at work are SIX times as likely to be engaged in their jobs. When this happens, you bring a more healthy YOU to the workplace ; and, you have a more healthy perspective of the people around you.

Unlocking human potential validates people and empowers growth among members, creating a “culture of honor” that spreads… not only through the workplace, but also through our relationships and communities.