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Introducing STRENGTHS

Today's post is written by ECS Graduate Advisor Jillian Baer, who advises intern, co-op, and full-time employment seeking students.

Do you know what you do well?  Are you able to pinpoint your talent areas?  When you are looking for an internship, co-op, or career employment, you want to make sure you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day.  Gallup’s widely used StrengthsQuest allows you to develop yourself professionally and maximize your talents in order to be a better worker and team member.  Through this assessment, you are able to gain insight into your career areas of greatest potential and the type of work environment in which you thrive.  StrengthsQuest also helps you develop as a leader in your community and workplace by increasing your self-awareness, helping you to understand others’ talents and strengths, and teaching you how best to form and maximize teams.

StrengthsQuest is a web based assessment that was developed in 1998 by the Gallup organization and educational psychologist Donald Clifton. Grounded in three decades of research across industry and educational organizations in more than 30 countries, the assessment is based in theory of positive psychology and asking about what is right with people. It returns your top 5 strengths out of 34 possibilities.

Ohio State has utilized strengths-based learning for years and offers a number of different resources around campus if you are interested in learning more or completing your assessment for the first time.  First Year Experience (FYE) uses strengths with many of their incoming freshmen every year and offers information about the tool.  Both a Strengths-Based Coaching Program and strengths workshops are conducted throughout the school year through the Ohio Union with the Center for Student Leadership and Service.  You can walk in and visit them at any time to get more information about StrengthsQuest.

Although you may be familiar with the StrengthsQuest assessment because of how widely it is used on Ohio State’s campus, have you really put the knowledge you have gained to work for you in a professional way?  How can this information help you in your job search in the field of engineering?  In our 3-part blog series this fall, we will delve into this topic and discuss how best to understand your own strengths and what talents you can bring to the table.  We will talk about using your strengths during your job search process and relying on them in networking, career fairs, and interviews.  Stay tuned…

“Research shows that knowing and using strengths can lead to greater self-confidence, productivity, and employee engagement which is linked to other desired outcomes around profitability, turnover, safety, employee retention, customer satisfaction, health and wellness, and more” (Harter, Schmidt, & Hayes, 2002) (Harter and Schmidt, 2002).

Do not try to teach a pig to sing – it wastes your time and annoys the pig.
– Donald O. Clifton and Paula Nelson, Soar with Your Strengths