Organization, Predictability, Routine and Structure: The Discipline Strength

… but all things should be done decently and in order.

1 Corinthians 14:40 (NRSVCE)

Contrary to what you might think, the #Discipline strength is not about consequences and corrections. It is about predictability, order, and planning in order to ensure the best possible outcome.

According to the Gallup Coaching Blog of July 2, 2018, only 7% of the over 18 million people who have completed the StrengthFinder assessment have the #Discipline theme as one of their top five strengths. Their need for routine and order means that everything has a place and purpose. They instinctively impose structure on their world. This #Executing theme helps to break down long term projects into short term processes. As leaders, they are able to help others construct order and work plans for others to benefit from. Their #Discipline means that they will ensure tasks are finished and meet standards that were agreed upon.

In the classroom, teachers who are talented in the #Discipline theme are excellent planners and curriculum mappers. Because the desire efficiency and productivity, they rarely fall behind. Furthermore, they help students to develop processes so that they complete tasks as well.

Students who are high in #Discipline will often be on top of things. During group work or projects, they will emerge as leaders, often setting timelines and clear work product expectations. These students might need assistance to clearly and respectfully communicate their intentions. Otherwise, they could be perceived as bossy. They might also be easily frustrated and disappointed in others when expectations are not met. Helping these students to know how to help others to understand what they value and why is critical for their long term success.

When putting together work teams, the individual with talent in the #Discipline theme can be counted on to bring order, efficiency, and product execution.

Adaptability: Adventure Awaits

– by Natasha Nichol

To possess the strength of ‘Adaptability’ is to be free; free to live in the moment, free to go with the flow, free to take things as they come, free to live one day at a time, and to view the future as a series of possibilities and not a fixed destination. The power that the theme of ‘Adaptability’ has is that you are not tied to one definitive set of plans, pathway or possibility in reaching an end goal. With this strength you are open to helping others in the moment, to be able to navigate unforeseen detours or challenges, to change direction mid mission and not be discouraged while doing so. It brings joy and comfort in being able to have the flexibility do so, not having to commit to one set path.

It is said that one who posses the strength of adaptability should avoid roles with structure and predictability. I am an elementary educator, a vice principal, a daughter, a wife, a mother of three. None of the roles are conducive to structure and predictability 24-7. It is because of my ‘Adaptability’ that I can negotiate my day to day, weaving in and out of each role, and still maintain my sanity. I am not resistant in pausing what I am doing to help others when they need it. I get excited when unforeseen learning opportunities, sparked by student interest, present themselves and excitedly deviate from my day plan. The ability to be ‘Adaptable’ allows me to take a detour with my son on the way to a hockey tournament to check out the Crooked Trees. I can drop everything and spontaneously go to visit my parents a province away. No missed opportunities.
There is the flipped side of the coin. ‘Adaptability’ can be a barrier if one does not keep the end goal in mind. There are days when I have a plan or a “To-Do List” that I want to conquer. When I deviate from the plan and take on other responsibilities or tasks I can loose sight of what I need to accomplish. This can add more work to my day and at times makes me the Queen of Procrastination. I am also aware that working with people who are not strong in ‘Adaptability’ can get frustrated with this “go with the flow” type of direction. My husband would be one of these people. He is an adaptable person but operates in a more structured and stable environment. Because of this I am more cognisant of how my ‘Adaptability’ will affect others when I change the plan and if it is worth it.

What I want others to take away from this strength is that it allows you to navigate the unexpected in a collected manner. Change is welcomed, not feared. There is always an end goal in mind but the journey is not set. Adventure awaits!