Thursday, April 30, 2015

Command, a Powerful Leadership Strength and a Polarizing Strength

When “Command” is referred to as a trait or strength it is a trademarked Gallup term. 

This is one of 34 traits that according to Gallup’s Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment, we all have within us.  What’s unique and fascinating about this particular trait and the other 33 traits on Gallup’s list is that while we all have Command somewhere on our traits list, we all have Command showing up at a different place on our list of traits.

If you have Command anywhere in your Top 10 Traits or Strengths, I strongly suggest that you learn what it is and how it operates.  Learn both the up-side and the down-side of being gifted with Command.  The up-side is powerful and so is the down-side.  

Command is one of the Traits or Strengths that occurs least often in a person’s Top 5 list.

Executive Presence

If you’ve ever heard someone talk about executive presence, part of what they’re likely talking about is an executives's ability to take control of a situation and to make decisions.  This is essentially the definition of Command.  Most leaders have a significant amount of Command showing up high in their Traits or Strengths.  While Command is certainly a gift that can propel a leader to high places, the down-side of Command is powerful too if the gift of Command is not fully understood.

The Down Side of Command

As a Trait or Strength, Command is in direct contrast to Empathy, another trademarked Gallup Trait or Strength.  While someone with Command likely has presence and can step to the front to lead, this person will often have a difficult time understanding how others feel unless they also have a significant amount of Empathy. 

This comparison is stepping into the realm of Emotional Intelligence where we measure a person’s view of themselves when they look in the mirror and we measure how a person comes across to others.

To measure these skills, we measure topics such as Self-Regard, Self-Actualization, Emotional Self-Awareness, Emotional Expression, Assertiveness, Independence, Interpersonal Relationships, Empathy, Reality Testing, Impulse Control and more.  We're then able to adjust these measured skill areas through coaching.

Command Summary

If you’ve ever been referred to as a “bull in a china shop” or something similar, you might have a significant amount of Command in your top Traits or Strengths.  If this is the case, I strongly urge you to discover how much command you have.  Then learn how to bridle your command so you can hold back when necessary and let it flow when it is appropriate.

If you want to learn more about Command, I wrote an article on LinkedIn recently entitled:  "Was That an Earthquake or Was That Our Leader Who Just Left The Room".  This article is essentially about Command.'s Security Recruiter Blog