WOO: Social Courage

On March 4th of this year, this StrengthsFinder inspired blog series "marched forth" on a quest to summarize each of the Clifton StrengthsFinder Talent Themes in the form of stories and real life examples.  Through 40 postings to date, I have been able to learn and appreciate each of the strengths, while exercising my own Signature Themes of Ideation (#2), Positivity (#4) and Achiever (#5).

My Futuristic talent (#3) came into play several months ago as I thought about this last post of "season one" of The Strengths Zone.  The combination of timing (the holidays) and reason (the alphabet) helped me land on Woo - winning others over.

To describe Woo in the workplace, I offer the stories of two amazing peers whom I have the pleasure of working with.  One leverages Woo to influence others internally while the other leverages this powerful strength to influence others externally.

My peer Eric is the Sr. Director of Content Engagement.  Currently, he is the only person I know who has all 5 Signature Talent Themes within the Influencing Leadership Domain.  People with influencing talents take charge and make sure their team is heard.  For many organizations, Content Engagement (social media) is the new frontier of marketing.  Eric has leveraged Woo to widen the influence that he and his team have within our company by expanding and educating his network of "followers" inside our organization.  From one-on-one meetings to group "Road Shows", Eric demonstrates Woo by literally building a broad social network and uses this talent to mine desirable content and expand the value of our content engagement platforms.

My peer Robyn is the Director of Travel Industry Sales.  Like Eric, you typically know when she has entered a room due to the energy which she releases .  I have been on Sales Calls and to Sales Conferences with Robyn, and her ability to own a room is the equivalent of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on a great night! Robyn does not see strangers - only future clients she has not yet met.  She derives satisfaction from breaking the ice, discovering needs and building comfort and rapport.  She is drawn to new clients and enjoys making new connections.

When your project requires prospecting, influencing and energy, place your people with Woo on point - they have the Social Courage to make a difference. 
People with Woo bring energy to social situations.  They function as catalysts in helping people connect with one another.  Here are some tips on how to aim this strength productively in the workplace;  

* People with Woo need people!  Make sure they have the opportunity to consistently meet new people internally and externally (volunteer opportunities and professional associations).   Perhaps place them on point to on-board new hires or act as an "envoy" internally to inform other departments about the wins, needs and challenges facing your work unit.  

* They love meeting people, but might struggle with remembering names and details due to the volume of introductions they make.  Help them establish ways to collect and remember names which can become a valuable resource for them and your department.  

* People with Woo are great greeters at meetings or social functions and should be tasked with helping more reserved people make connections so that they feel comfortable.  

I am currently serving 20 years to life as the Sr. Director of Destination Experiences at Universal Orlando Resort.  I'm an optimistic pace-setter fascinated by tomorrow.  In any situation, you can count on me to think outside the box and find the best way forward.  I prefer white-water rapids over data lakes and include Ideation, Futuristic and Positivity amongst my signature talents.    Find me on Twitter @dpddonovan and Instagram @strengthszone  


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