Chad T. Ahern
Talents & Burnout: Developer®
"People exceptionally talented in the Developer theme recognize and cultivate the potential in others. They spot the signs of each small improvement and derive satisfaction from evidence of progress." - Gallup CliftonStrengths® Themes Quick Reference Guide -
Those with Developer® talents love to help and personally observe their colleagues grow, on both a professional and personal level. They love to find the "glimpses of excellence" in everyday occurrences. Therefore, those you lead and work with who have Developer® talents might begin experiencing burnout in times of change, particularly during our current pandemic, when:
Their work teams decrease in size. With fewer people there are essentially fewer opportunities for them to mentor, teach, and develop their colleagues. While some may like to go deep with a few team members, there are others that want to help as many as they can. It is this second group that might struggle with the emotional exhaustion of trying to live out their innate talents.
There are fewer moments to interact. Even if your team stays the same size, social distancing, dispersed work forces, and maximum office density practices will continue to limit opportunities to sit “shoulder-to-shoulder” with colleagues to mentor or share knowledge. This could also be further exacerbated if people begin limiting their involvement in virtual meetings (Zoom, MS Teams, GoToMeeting, etc.) to preserve energy and mental health.
In times of great change, particularly now, we need people that will encourage us. We need people that see potential. We need people that are ready, willing, and excited to share what they know so that we can all become better. To that end, if you're a leader or teammate of someone with Developer® talents, help them avoid burnout by:
Defining new avenues to publish knowledge and share expert pieces. This could be a Slack discussion thread, a shared Dropbox folder, or even a voluntary Zoom check-in. Help find ways for your Developer® talented colleagues to share what they know.
Allow those with Developer® talents to launch & lead in-house, low cost, professional development initiatives; particularly through new virtual channels.
Be sure if you’re leading someone with Developer® talents, find ways to openly share your own expertise & knowledge. They will appreciate your interest in them and, more importantly, it will give them additional resources they share with others.
As with coaching any individual, their combined set of talent themes will effect how their Developer® talents show up, and how to best manage them. As a beginning, next time you check-in with them, ask,
Who is helping you grow? Whom are you helping right now?
Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash
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