Hunters and Carers

I’m grappling with the consequences of implementing the strengths based philosophy and a recent conversation with a good client is indicative of the dilemma. This organisation wants their Relationship Managers to be as good at bringing in new clients as they are at looking after them, but few in the team seem to have both strengths in balance (funny that) and training isn’t a viable solution, unless other things are addressed.

The strengths approach (and my experience) says that those who are “hunters” love wooing others (winning them over – to use the Clifton Strengths Finder category) and will never be as good at caring as they are at wooing. When they’ve brought a new client in to the organisation, the wooing is over and the hunter is on to the next prospective client and the new client can suddenly feel a bit “unloved” if no one else takes over to care for them.

The carers in comparison, are a little bit slower in forming relationships with new clients and find the wooing very difficult so they procrastinate. But they love looking after existing clients and making sure they are happy.

A mix of hunter and carer is ideal, but we are more likely to create that in a team than to create that mix in a person.

What happens to a manager of a team who has been tasked with making sure each team member does their share of hunting and caring?

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