We were recently requested to take the StrengthFinder test for work. I’d taken this test right after I graduated so I was interested in seeing whether or not the test came out the same (or similar). Someone at work pointed out that this is a test of how you see yourself so the results must be viewed with that little grain of salt, but overall I was not surprised at my results.
When I took this test in 2010, just as I was graduating from my program at the School of Information, I tested as: Learner, Intellection, Input, Deliberative and Arranger. I was very ‘information’ focused. I knew, however, I wanted to connect people to the information, resources, and tools that they could use effectively to change their lives. I chose my graduate program, after all, for the Community Informatics program that appeals to my people-centric sense of social justice and appropriate application of resources. So, after lots of other decisions, information gathering, and research, I applied for the position I now have at Open.Michigan. After two years in this job, I have become: Learner, Input, Intellection, Developer, Empathy. My secondary traits have shifted toward people–which is a very rewarding affirmation of the hard work I’ve put into my position, cultivating a community around sharing, at the university.
I find it interesting that I am still, fundamentally, a learner and a gatherer of information. In fact, one of my fallback phrases is “that’s interesting” and… I really do mean it! A seemingly random, 20-second timed questions affirm my desire to learn, collect information and reflect on it. Fitting into an organizational culture and working in a position that I am intrinsically motivated to excel in if very important to me. So while it is an affirmation that I am in a position, in a department, at an institution, where my strengths are generally appropriate, I need to remember to carve out time for myself to gather, reflect, and learn about the world around me. It’s one of my goals for the year to come–to purposefully carve out that time for myself.