neither competitor nor achiever

I met Daniel Im at the Awaken Conference this past April, and enjoyed a very engaging conversation with this next gen leader. It always excites me when I meet someone with new ideas and isn’t a cookie-cutter person living out a predictable narrative. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. I don’t know if he’s bilingual as he ministers in bilingual Montreal, Quebec, (i.e. English and French), but he did start blogging and I want to share a lil’ link love.

Like Daniel, I’m a big fan of StrengthsFinder. (I also like the Birkman Method, but that’s an expensiver tool b/c of labor-intensive consulting fees.)

Daniel shared some good thoughts about his achiever theme in this post titled Competition vs. Achiever. He’s got an achiever strength theme, which I thinks makes it easier to figure out the value he adds to an organization. I got a more unusual mix: ideation, input, strategic, adaptability, woo.

But, here’s my dilemma — I don’t get motivated by competition nor by achievement. In a goal-oriented, accomplishment-celebrated, free-market-economy, make-a-difference kind of a world, I don’t have an easy time discerning my ideal job description, overall end game, nor setting life goals. (contrast with Mark Batterson’s ambitious life goals) I don’t feel bad about this (or, I feel less badly about it, over time), but it is very much a personal dilemma.

Ironic thing is: I’m the oldest of three boys in my family of origin. You could say that I’m the embodiment of more complexities and contradictions than the average bear.

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5 Responses

  1. Khoi Ngo says:

    Hey DJ Chuang!

    I enjoy the things you share here on your blog. Keep it coming! I find it even more refreshing when you share about who you are. Transparency is a beautiful thing. Ideation – it took me a while to master the pronunciation for that word. Ha! Wow, your strengths reflect some of the characteristics of a Third Culture citizen.

  2. Daniel Im says:

    Hey DJ, Thanks for the comments. I appreciate it 🙂

    When looking at your top five, it makes complete sense why you are doing what you are doing via this blog, at the leadership network, and in the broader church. It’s amazing to meet individuals who understand the unique way that God has talented them and then to be working at a job where they can exercise those.

    In regards to your dilemma, there is no doubt that you are achieving and accomplishing much. And although you may not be motivated by competition or achievement, I believe that you are accomplishing great things because you have probably used your ideation, strategic, and adaptability to discover a different strategy in motivating yourself and getting things done. Please correct me if I’m wrong though! 🙂


  3. Dr. Timothy Tseng enlightened me to Strengths Finder 2.0. I like the positive approach and will use the book w/ its assessment in my Christian Life and Discipleship and Seminar in Pastoral Studies classes at Tyndale University College in Toronto where I teach. It has been great exploring my strengths and see how it matches my work here at Tyndale. I am doing a lot of coaching and mentoring that goes with a key theme that I have, Individualization.

    I do what to think about the philosophy of Strengths Finder from a biblical and theological perspective. The accompanying material and books focus on strengths to the “neglect” of weaknesses. There are strategies for compensating for weaknesses. On the positive side we are to stir up the gift(s) God has given us but also God’s strength is also found in our weaknesses. We are called to “put off” before we “put on” certain practices and we are to weed before we seed (James 1).

    I wonder if others have some similar or different thoughts on Strengths Finder 2.0.

  4. djchuang says:

    I’m of the persuasion that StrengthsFinder fits very well with a biblical theology. A good portion (if not all) of the StrengthsFinder philosophy is formed within a Christian worldview.

    I had a conversation with one of the Gallup Faith VPs, and he described for me how StrengthsFinder (especially all how 34 themes rank in one’s life) kind of shows your unique DNA, God’s fingerprint on how you were created, if you will, and helps to discern where you fit in the body of Christ, where you need other members of the body (i.e. weaknesses, or lower ranking StrengthsFinder themes), and an indicator towards your best contribution to God’s Kingdom.

    Great book that connects StrengthsFinder with a Christian perspective is “Living Your Strengths: Discover Your God-Given Talents and Inspire Your Community”

    In terms of boasting in our weakness that’s mentioned in Scripture, that may refer to weakness in a difference sense– perhaps in the sense of our finiteness and frail humanity, not to boast in our God-given talents/ gifts/ strengths…

  5. Thanks, DJ, for the reply. I am planning on getting that book with the Christian perspective. I was looking it up on Amazon last week but also know that is available at one of the theological libraries at the University of Toronto.

    We all need to find our contribution to the body of Christ (often via spiritual gifts) and for the kingdom. Knowing our strengths can assist with that. Spiritual gifts surveys can give some indication. Another consideration is one’s passion for an area of ministry or life.

    Hmm, back to “exercising” my weakness – research and writing.