I have no doctrine, I carry on a dialogue. I have to tell it again and again: I have no doctrine. I only point out something. I point out reality, I point out something in reality which has not or too little been seen. I take him who listens to me at his hand and lead him to the window. I push open the window and point outside.Martin Buber, Jewish Philosopher
Me? I did not live in my strengths and talents. I did not know my potential. It was as if I was not living my own life.
Now, I am coaching individuals and couples helping them get to know themselves better, helping managers and pastors to discover their potential, build their businesses, teams and churches to work better with their teams and communities.
Who am I?
I use my own tools to give you an idea of who I am. Let me start with my top 10 CliftonStrengths:
Ideation: I live, breathe, and emit ideas. I connect what does not belong for others and thus create unconventional solutions.
Learner: Life long learning was mine before it became a buzzword. I love the environment of learning, the challenge of the unknown soon to be known, the exchange with smart people.
Deliberative: Before executing on something, I assess all the risks so I know what to look for and how to prevent disaster. Maybe I am a slow starter because of that, but overall, good planing pays off.
Intellection: The world inside of my head is bigger, more colourful, more fascinating than what others call the real world. My most beloved place is a library inside my mind, filled with books and infinite in size.
Futuristic: I live about 10 to 50 years in the future, and the future is bright. Much of what I have seen decades ago now comes into fruition.
Connectedness: All is connected. Cause and effect is too small a concept. Systemic thinking, modelling, patterns, principles, ontologies, order and chaos.
Strategic: Of course I see all those solutions!
Analytical: Don’t forget the patterns in the data.
Input: The data I gather wherever possible.
Self-Assurance: And finally, I know that I am right. Well, I would be, if I believed in such dualistic categories as right and wrong.
I’m not a teacher: only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead – ahead of myself as well as you.George Bernard Shaw
How do I see the World?
I am an intuitive thinker pointing ahead.
Let’s now look at my Spiral Dynamics value profile.
I see the world as a mesh of divergent individuals and cultures with increasingly complex dynamics. In this world, the human being is a deep mystery. I fulfil the functions necessary to meet the needs of the situation, and that works for me.
My dominant worldview has the following features: I adopt an overarching view of complex dynamic systems and can clearly understand and explain their essential operation. In seeking synergy, I am able to make my specific contribution in a manner that coheres with other people’s contributions. I can let time work to my advantage and am capable of unconventional interventions and of actions that transcend my personal interests.
Some words that apply to me: flexible, unorthodox, an eye for how things interrelate, able to deal with uncertainties, able to find my way in complex and confusing situations, unafraid to exit situations in which I have no more contributions to make.
What others say about me
Looking at your results and the dominance you have in the Strategic Thinking domain it would be safe to say that you spend much of your time in your head, processing data. You simply love watching, absorbing, processing, sharing and building connections. What you will be specifically drawn to think about will obviously be significantly impacted by your signature themes (as you know). And this is were it can be extremely challenging for you. In essence you have two systems of thinking – a very dominant creative, esoteric approach and a lessor, logical, factual side.
Let’s focus first on the first, more dominant system. You love exploring life from as many different angles as possible but with a focused intentionality of discovering and inventing human systems for yourself with the core aim simply to make life more meaningful and deeper for people.
With these initial explorations, you remain liberal, creative and indulgent as you hold information “lightly”. You use an existing model as a template to leverage your thoughts off as you explore different ways it could be configured, presented or understood. In this phase, very little is right or wrong with the emphasis on possibility rather than probability.
There is significant depth to your concepts and you indulge fully in configuring numerous approaches. Ultimately it will be your feelings (emotions) and your very specific need to control everything that happens to you that fuels the development of these configurations or theories.
With these initial explorations, you remain liberal, creative and indulgent as you hold information “lightly”. You use an existing model as a template to leverage your thoughts off as you explore different ways it could be configured, presented or understood. In this phase, very little is right or wrong with the emphasis on possibility rather than probability. There is significant depth to your concepts and you indulge fully in configuring numerous approaches. Ultimately it will be your feelings (emotions) and your very specific need to control everything that happens to you that fuels the development of these configurations or theories.
But it does not necessarily end there. Armed with the information you have gleaned through trial and error and presuming you have afforded yourself enough time to think deeper about your configurations, you will now want to prod and poke, explore and test these ideas and concepts further; much like the early doctors as they tried to understand the human body and the impact of disease.
In this space your focus is far more factual, logical and intentional; you search now for deeper understanding, knowledge and facts that make sense and can be trusted. In this space, you sift through all the papers in your mind to find the ones that really matter.
But this takes effort. To achieve this level of understanding is not nearly as interesting as discovering something new or coming up with a new approach that makes so much sense in your head. And this is where your real challenge lies. Not only do you prefer a creative, undisciplined way of thinking but when it comes to implementing any of your ideas, your perfectionist tendencies kick in because now you have to control the outcome completely. And so you stay in your head and prefer to talk about it rather than actually do it.
This is not necessarily a bad thing, but you may find that people tend to prefer taking advice from people who have actually done it rather than those who have thought about it. This is most likely due the fact that implementation requires a nuanced application of knowledge that only actual practice can provide.
I hope that helps Ralph.
And from here on?
I build the future, but I need you to help.
As a Gallup certified CliftonStrengths coach I help you focus on your strengths and learn to trust them. As a Spiral Dynamics practitioner certified through ValueMatch and Don Beck I help you understand your own and others’ worldview.
Usually, I provide my clients with the necessary codes to do the respective online assessments and at least 2 coaching hours as a starter into self-awareness work. We do this at our place, your place, or through Zoom.
We also offer intense half-day coaching for up to two people including a meal – that takes place at our home in Switzerland, so sorry if you live abroad–that offer is not quit the same via Zoom.
For larger team sessions, speaking invitations and other requests, please contact me using the form below.
Are you interested in theology and faith? Why not visit my personal blog then?