Monday, May 21, 2007

What's your 'nerve strength'?

Recently, many of us at church took the Gallup Strengths Finder Assessment – a tool that is used in the business world to develop talent, build teams and enhance relationships. Not surprisingly – everyone has different strengths and talents – and they say that finding someone who shares your top five in order is a one-in-seventeen million proposition. (

Gallup gives cool one-word “markety” names to each of the 34 strengths identified. One is called Achiever… a constant, relentless need for achievement – a drive to do more in order to feel good about yourself. The fact that this ranked in my top five did not surprise me. But of my many talents (ha, ha) this one is different in one regard: I think it’s my ‘nerve strength’ – the talent or strength that strikes a particular nerve – the one through which I judge other people. For example – I won’t think less of you if you have trouble seeing patters (Strategic) or if you’re not naturally inquisitive (Input). Likewise, I hope you won’t like me less because I don’t share your talents for Empathy, Includer or Woo (I don’t).

But I do judge people on whether or not they are Achievers. I think better of people who share this strength and less of people who don’t. And that's wrong. Even worse, there are people I love who are not Achievers – nor should they be. They have being given other talents and strengths. But I don’t naturally respond with this understanding. I get angry. Upset. Frustrated.

Do you have a ‘nerve strength’ like me? Perhaps knowing how God wired me will make it easier for me to be more understanding – and share a more Christ-like love. Gallup calls those who can turn thoughts like this into action Activators. Don't think less of me, but that strength wasn’t on my list.


trace said...

nice blog! I have linked you to mine (it's hard enough keeping up with one blog).
- trace

TK said...

Hey ed,

This is me:


I feel your pain about the achiever thing. Maybe there is some underlying shadow quirk or flaw that we achievers also share.