StandOut Hardcover – Sep 12 2011
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About the Author
Marcus Buckingham is a best-selling author with more than 3.7 million copies of his landmark bestsellers in print. Profiled in the New York Times, Fortune, and Fast Company, he has consulted with brands such as Toyota, Coca-Cola, and Best Buy.
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Top Customer Reviews
I really appreciated the depth of the report in revealing what the traits I found to be my strengths were and when reviewing it with my spouse, after both doing the evaluation, we found it to be pretty spot on.
I like the theory, learned a lot and I hope to see more come out of this from MB in the future. Check it out!
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
"Standout" is the latest in a series of Strength Assessments. Its particular focus is on finding your edge at work. At the heart of the book is the assessment test itself which will let the reader know which of 9 Strength Roles the reader is strongest at, with a particular emphasis on the top 2 Strengths Roles. In fact, most of the book is taken up with chapters devoted to describing in detail each of the 9 Strength Roles in terms of the following categories:
You, at Your Most Powerful
How to Describe Yourself
How to Make an Immediate Impact
How to Take Your Performance to the Next Level
What to Watch Out For
How to Win as a Leader/ Manager/ in Sales/ in Client Service
The "Standout" assessment, therefore, does give the reader some useful information about himself. But here's why "Standout" was not as useful to me as the other Strengths books. First, as you can see by the categories above, "Standout" applies specifically to work, but only to certain kinds of work, especially business. As a priest, professor, and teacher, this book is simply less relevant to me.
Second, I was not as satisfied with the assessment itself. While the other books revealed meaningful and at times profound things about myself - which almost always corresponded to who I am - the "Standout" assessment didn't seem to capture me very well. I came out as Equalizer first and Advisor second. While both of these fit me to some degree, they don't capture my essence as other Strengths assessments did. For example, I have aspect of an Advisor but am not as good at organizing and problem solving as the test suggested. What undermined my confidence in the assessment even more is that of the 9 Strengths Roles (which the online assessment ranked), "Teacher" came out as #9. This makes no sense since I have not only taught in a wide variety of settings but have also enjoyed great success as a teacher. Is it really my weakest Strength Role? Unlikely.
I believe that there is value in "Standout" for many readers, especially if you're in business. But I still believe the other Strengths works such as "Now, Discover Your Strengths" and "Go, Put Your Strengths to Work" are more valuable works and highly recommend them.
I've been on my Strengths journey for many years and read many of Buckingham's published work. Like his works before, StandOut features the conversational writing style that allows Buckingham to share several of the personal anecdotes that make him such an engaging speaker. StandOut continues Buckingham's legacy as the Strengths Revolution leader by introducing us to nine new Strengths roles identified through the StandOut Assessment. This natural evolution of the Strengths philosophy confirms Buckingham's previous teachings that we are the best judges of activities that Strengthen or weaken us, while now showing us how we appear to others when utilizing these Strengths. What sets this work apart from his catalogue is the nature of the assessment itself.
Instead of choosing words that you think describe you, the participant is given a situation and must choose between equally "good" choices. After numerous timed scenarios, the Standout Assessment translates those action choices into Strength roles. The report reveals your top two roles, those areas where you can make the greatest contribution, as well as the powerful combination of those roles. Then you're taken to the next level - how you can use this new information to win at work, on a team, in client services or in sales, and what to watch out for. You are provided simple, actionable steps to take - something missing in many other assessments.
Where StrengthsFinder provided language to describe how we see ourselves, StandOut reveals these Strengths in action! And this shift is the most critical in understanding the assessment results. From page 26, "keep your mind open to the possibility that no matter how you see yourself, this is how others see you."My advice? Read the book through page 28, then take the assessment. Read your entire StandOut assessment report, and then read the rest of the book. Discuss your results with those who work around you, and then choose one of the suggested action steps from the report. Here, you can "find your edge" and "win at work."
While having worked with Strengths for over 10 years now, StandOut is the first assessment which truly enables communication between manager and employee, within teams, within my volunteer organizations and also shows up in my interactions with family and friends. This assessment and book enables me not only to learn more about my strengths, but how those strengths look to other people. If I truly want to make an impact on those around me it is important I know how my strengths look to those around me. This information gives me a foundation to build on my communications with the people I work with as to why some activities truly energize me. It gives me, personally, the groundwork to understand how others communicate and approach work differently than myself and to recognize the strengths they bring to the table quicker.
For example, I am currently leveraging this assessment with a client whom I am the project / change management lead on. The project focus is on implementing a financial planning and reporting technology and as you implement technology, jobs change and time free's up. Through this implementation, we have discovered how to leverage various employee's strengths in the research, selection, development, and training of this financial planning technology. We have managers and CFO's engaging in different conversations with direct reports, so as time free's up due to less time forecasting and reporting, they are delegating project work to individuals in a different way. As the CFO I am working with and coaching on StandOut said to me recently 'I don't want to move people just to move them, I want to ensure they will be engaged and that we give them the right work'.
The StandOut assessment has provided them quick insights that are relevant, timely and tangible. It has opened doors for better communications and collaboration, and is assisting to lay the foundation for a new culture in this finance department. While the book focuses on providing a deeper dive into all of the 9 roles, this has given me personally, as well as the management team the insights as a to better understand and engage the individuals on the team.
If you haven't purchased StandOut yet, or taken this assessment, you should. Better yet, give it to a spouse, a friend, a mentor, a colleague, your networking group and go out for a fun dinner at your favorite restaurant and see where the conversation guides you. You just might be surprised!
I asked for a refund, then bought it again and received the key instantly by email.
In some cases amazon has advised that there is no key for the kindle edition, but this is incorrect. It's only the presale that seemed to miss the key.
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