Last week, Realogy Corp graduated a second cohort from Ascend: The Executive Experience. This is a 46-week intensive succession leadership program, that I have been honored to be a part of, for a second year in a row. It is a program like no other. It uses a variety of learning deliveries; in person training, synchronous vILTs (virtual Instructor Led Trainings), independent reading and analysis, and a case study presentation. The program brings together students, company presidents, industry experts, learning and development experts, and renowned speakers.

It was bitter sweet to see our students graduating, like it was after last year’s program. The time and commitment they have each put forth in the program is well recognized in the growth they have experienced as leaders. We had wonderful feedback from the participants, but what resonated with me the most, was what made this program so amazing…it was the diversity of the steering committee. And, I concur! Our diversity is what makes the program so strong.

The steering committee includes, a former Brand President, a Senior Vice President, a Human Resources professional trainer and speaker from the industry, a logistics, project managing, and event master, and myself, an adult learning expert and instructional designer.

To this project, we each bring very diverse expertise, background, and perspectives. We each have a very diverse set of strengths. When we collaborate and brainstorm, we build upon each other’s ideas, which has created a program that is unmatched in the industry. At every moment, we are evaluating, analyzing, modifying, and delivering a program that is unique to the needs of our students.

So, it is 2017, a new year, new initiatives. Think for a moment about your team. Have you selected a team that is diverse in the skills and talents? Instinctively, we tend to hire and surround ourselves with people who think like us and work like us, but this limits what we can deliver. We need a diverse team with varying strengths to maximize the power of what we want to create. I challenge you to read with your team, Strengths 2.0 and facilitate some conversations about what strengths you each bring to the team. When do you feel strong? When do you feel weak? How does this correlate to the work you each do? How can you change your team work assignments and activities to utilize each person’s strengths?

By focusing on diversity of our teams, identifying each person’s strengths, we can increase productivity and efficiency and create a team that is committed and engaged.

Of course, we would love to facilitate a Strengths workshop for you. Contact ZPS today to book a workshop.