While everyone has a unique combination of strengths in their top 5 StrengthsFinder themes, some combinations come across to me as intriguing and interesting. Singaporean Student, Yu Fung, had a pretty interesting combination of StrengthsFinder themes. This combination caught my eyes because his themes have a time-based characteristic tied to them. Yu Fung has Context, Adaptability and Futuristic in his top 5 StrengthsFinder results. A person with Context enjoys looking into the past to make sense of the future. A person with Adaptability prefer to be in the present and enjoys the "now". A person with Futuristic likes to dream about possibilities that can happen in the future. This was the first time I came across such a unique and interesting combination since I started StrengthsFinder coaching in Singapore.
I had the privilege to interview Yu Fung to understand a little bit more about how he naturally think, feel and behave. The interview is detailed below.
1) Could you share with us the sequence of how you go about making decisions having all 3 talent themes (Context, adaptability & futuristic)? If you can, provide an example so that readers can understand.
YF: I tend to find myself making decisions by first thinking of what has already occurred in the past, using "Context" to filter the answers to my question out. Following that, I will think of ways to "repeat" those occurrences from the past in the coming future, using the "Futuristic" trait. After which, I then adjust my current situation and myself to get the desired result I want to see in the future, thus using "Adaptability", and all 3 themes to make decisions. An example of how I make decisions like this would be my goal of studying at Waseda University. Firstly, I did some research on what kind of graduates the University produced in the past. Through the research, I decided that it would be good if I can graduate from this same University in the future, as it had produced influential graduates in the past. After making this decision and having a goal in mind, I used this information to change my subject combination now in the Singapore Junior College that I'm studying at. I decide to change the subject combination to one that I feel will give me the best chance to enrol in that particular University in the future. This is how many of my decisions are made using these three different talent themes.
2) Is there a difference for the sequence when it comes to smaller decisions compared to bigger ones?
YF: Regarding the sequence of talents utilised during choices, I mostly tend to lean towards solely my Adaptability theme when there are quick decisions to be made and I have only a few minutes to make these decisions. I use all the three talent themes of Context, Adaptability and Futuristic mainly when there are large and key decisions.
3) Which talent theme do you resonate with the most and why?
YF: Personally I feel I resonate the most with the Context theme as I really enjoy digging up the past with all its mysteries. I feel the past has a lot of meaning and I enjoy reading about what others have done. I love studying my history subject now in school!
4) You're the first person whom I have come across who has all 3 "time factored" talents. How do you feel about this combination?
YF: Haha. I think that these 3 talents I have are quite special in a way to me. Using them is almost second nature to me. Now knowing that I am so unique is really surprising to me. I always thought such thinking is normal. I feel great about this strengthsfinder combination because I really enjoy using these 3 talent themes. It is who I am.
5) How are these 3 talent themes shown when it comes to your studies or school life?
YF: I feel that the Futuristic theme is the one theme I rarely use in school especially now in Junior College. Maybe I just need more guidance on how to use this theme effectively. I feel that the Context theme is very much visible due to the plain fact that I take History as a subject. I really enjoy studying about the past. I use my Adaptability theme frequently in my studies as I tend to adjust my study schedules a lot. I enjoy studying in a very dynamic and spontaneous way.
6) Have you taken any leadership role before? If yes, how do you think you use these 3 talents for your leadership role?
YF: I was appointed the head of the Secondary One students in my previous Co-Curricular Activity (CCA) during my senior years in Secondary school. I had to use my Context theme to recreate programs or initiatives that I felt was personally impactful to me in the past, while adapting minor changes to make the planned programs more effective to the students I was leading. I think the fine tuning was the Adaptability theme at work. Of course, the programs are made because my Futuristic believes that the students can grow in the future as a direct or indirect result of the planned program.
7) Do you have any interests/ hobbies/ favourite movies covering 1, 2 or all 3 of the talents?
YF: I do not really have hobbies that cover the Futuristic talent theme, but I do have some for the other 2 themes of Context and Adaptability . I enjoy building scale model replicas of World War II battleships, and am currently still working on one. This is because I deeply enjoy the history of WW2. I also enjoy playing RTS (Real-Time Strategy) games, as they force me to think on my feet and make decisions as and when something happens, using my Adaptability theme.
8) When you think and reflect on your own life, how do these 3 talent themes affect your thought process?
YF: Whenever I reflect on my life, I feel that I tend to follow the ranking of the strengths I have tellingly. I will always start by thinking of what have I done before, then move on to what outcome I desire to accomplish in the future. After that, I will decide on what to do in the present. This is my natural thought process.
YF: Thank you for this interview. I learn a lot about myself as I reflect.
Concluding Thoughts: Some people have very interesting combinations of talent themes in their top 5 StrengthsFinder results. These combinations provide very unique perspectives that can become a great source of strength and power to help a person succeed in what he does.
If you know of someone who you feel has a very unique combination of talent themes, let me know! I'll love to conduct an interview with this person to find out more!
Written by Victor Seet
Activator • Communication • Strategic • Self-Assurance • Command
As a Gallup Certified Singapore Strengthsfinder coach, Victor is passionate about strengths engagement and now runs his own training company, Strengths School™ (strengthsschool.com), based in Singapore. He has been actively giving Strengthsfinder leadership and team building workshops to businesses and schools in Singapore as well as Hong Kong, China (Shanghai) and India.