by Casey Mulcare, Coordinator – Office of Student Involvement and Leadership
Q1: How do you define this theme of talent for yourself?
Focus is my fifth theme of talent, and is apparent in many parts of my day to day life. I define it as my ability to (cue the Star Wars voice) “stay on target” (anyone get the reference? Anyone? Carry on…) I very easily can stay on a task, find out the most efficient way to do that task, and make sure that others who may be invested in that task get to the goal as well. I can usually see what our end goal is very quickly and with relative ease, and no matter where discussions may go, I can usually get myself or the group to that end goal. I take a lot of joy in seeing a task from start to finish and creating and seeing through a process, even if that process may take some time.
Q2: When this talent is applied, what has this theme enabled you to do in your role at BSU?
In my day to day work with students, I constantly put this theme of talent into use. While meetings can easily get side tracked by new and exciting ideas (or distractions), I have been able to make sure that the main goal is achieved for that particular meeting, or that progress of some sort has been made. Even if the goal of that meeting was just to catch up with a student, I am able to block out other responsibilities to complete that goal. This talent also helps me keep on track with the close to 100 student programs that my area puts on throughout the year, from putting in room reservations to balancing budgets and keeping track of paperwork for about 20 different student volunteers and employees.
Q3: How is this theme of talent sometimes misunderstood?
Sometimes I feel Focus can be seen as an inability to be flexible, or that every meeting/event/discussion has to get straight to the point. For someone to have Focus, I should be staring into a computer or doing the same task day in and day out, right? I actually thrive on my schedule being variable week to week, with my Focus kicking in to help me narrow down the important tasks that need to be accomplished that week as opposed to the week before. Many times I feel I can turn this theme of talent on or off depending on the situation, and “Focus ” on simply catching up with a friend or enjoying some down time. People with Focus don’t need to be “on” or squirreled away in a lengthy Excel sheet to be effective.
Q4: What are ways you have helped this talent to “mature” over the course of your career and experience?
I have taken on some tasks that some may seem arduous, from going through scholarship applications to facilitating room assignments in a student center over the course of a year in one sitting. While these tasks take time, I’m able to set aside the time needed and work quicker than most through these tasks. I have also made sure to pull myself away from tasks that my Focus is really in play to give myself a rest, or leave part of the task for the next day or another person on the team. Just because I could do it quicker, doesn’t mean that another person (or a night to sleep on a decision) won’t benefit my work.
For more information on the “Focus” theme of talent, visit the site for the “Theme Thursday” webcasts from the Gallup organization using this link!