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January 20, 2020

In 2019 each of the Purple Ink team members selected a word of the year; mine was simplify, and I loved having that focus when I considered my goals, my home, my purchases, my email, my work, my volunteer time, and more! In 2020 we are selecting one of our CliftonStrengths® signature themes to focus on, and we’ll be sharing those with you throughout the year. I’ve selected my #4 theme, Strategic.

Let’s start with Gallup’s definition:

“Strategic in Action”

People with strong Strategic talents can sort through the clutter to find the best route. You can’t teach this skill. It is a distinct way of thinking — a unique perspective on the world at large. This outlook allows them to see patterns where others see complexity. Mindful of these patterns, they envision alternative scenarios, always asking, “What if this happened?” This recurring question helps them see, plan and prepare for future situations. They see a way when others assume there is no way. Armed with this strategy, they move forward.

“Strategic’s Power and Edge”

People with strong Strategic talents bring creative anticipation, imagination and persistence to the groups and projects they work on. They can quickly weigh alternative paths and determine the one that will work best and most efficiently. They find the best route moving forward.

How I will focus on strategic in 2020?

These are my thoughts now, but I hope to discover even more ways to positively apply this strength throughout the year.

  • Schedule time each week to think about my current goals and strategies. Starting in early 2019 I strategically scheduled myself to work from home on almost every Friday, and I will continue this practice in 2020. I now have added a 30-minute appointment to my Friday calendars in order to assess where I am on my overall personal and professional goals as well as on my goal to be intentionally strategic!
  • It is natural for me to think quickly and make quick decisions, forgetting that I’m not always sharing how I got there with the rest of my team, family, or clients. For 2020, I will remind myself to ask my “teams” if they have questions on the decision and/or to share more details with them regarding my thoughts and approach.
  • I already serve on the strategic planning committee for my church, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. This has been a great opportunity for me to focus on strategy, and I will continue to serve in this capacity.
  • I am the Chair of the 2020 HR Indiana SHRM conference. This also allows me to step back and take a broader look at the conference as a whole and surround myself with an amazing and experienced group of team members who are devoted to this initiative. Combining my strategic and futuristic strengths has enabled our team to make more long-term decisions that will also impact the 2021 conference, and I will look for opportunities to do this even more.
  • I also serve as a board member to Forum Credit Union and The O’Connor House, but I have strategically dropped out of 2 other volunteer commitments for 2020 to enable me to be more focused on my current goals and commitments.
  • Since my tendency is to “hate doing things the way they have always been done,” I will also reconsider what is already working well in my life with clients and team members, and slow down on always wanting to make changes.
  • I spent the first few days of 2020 at a Catholic conference to learn more about my faith and to deepen my relationship with God. I will seek out strategic opportunities to make this an even greater part of my life in 2020.
  • I’ve already scheduled a year’s worth of appointments for me to work with my Purple Ink/life coach, Susan Tinder White. Since I need lots of help, I have two coaches, and I also scheduled appointments for the year with my CliftonStrengths®/spiritual coach, Denise McGonigal.

What will YOU do in 2020?

If you know your CliftonStrengths®, I encourage you to join us on focusing on one of them this year. If not, consider taking the assessment at http://www.gallup.com/cliftonstrengths to discover your strengths. Need help in making a plan with your strengths or learning to apply them in your daily life – both personally and professionally? Want to work with your team to learn how to leverage your strengths together? Reach out to Purple Ink, or me directly, for more information!

JoDee Curtis
JoDee Curtis
JoDee Curtis is the Founder of Purple Ink, Powered by Purple Ink, and the ink pad, author of four books in the JoyPowered® series, and co-host of The JoyPowered® Workspace Podcast. She has a passion for helping organizations and individuals discover their talents, do more of what they do well through her speaking and training, and find joy in their work.

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