Strengths-Based Leadership Group in a circle at Stiles Machinery

A program taster leads to cultural transformation.

Get inside Stiles Machinery and see what Strengths can look like when the whole company buys in.

Stiles Machinery is a Homag company providing technology and solutions for the woodworking industry. Thomas Allott is the Manager of Stiles University – an IASET accredited institution – which is charged with training customers’ employees along with their own team of 550 people throughout North America. Training includes technical skill-based, sales training, business acumen and soft skills. 85-90% is curated and facilitated in-house and they partner with external companies like AG Collaborative.

After Thomas received our (in)direct mailer last fall he decided to send a pilot group of 10 team members to our public session of Strengths-Based Leadership (SBL). This group shared raving reviews after their participation which signaled Thomas to a demand for this type of development work within their company. 

“We have other leadership program partners, but I have never seen as much positive feedback as I received from the 10 people we sent through Strengths-Based Leadership… We knew we had found something that would work for us.”

Since the fall of 2018, we have facilitated four groups through SBL within Stiles, which has created a shared language throughout the company and provided a framework for working together and communicating with coworkers who have a different set of strengths. 

“So far we have about 175 people trained in this model, next year we are hoping to double that number.”

This program will now be part of their new employee training process and will be the foundation of additional in-house training to create cohesion. 

Thomas reflected on the impact of SBL within the organization as a whole and also in the day-to-day interactions.

“It has allowed people to put their collars down.”

Especially those who hold more firm boundaries between work life and personal life. This experience has invited them to show up as a whole person within their team, becoming more collaborative and approachable. 

His biggest piece of advice for companies embracing this Strengths-Based approach to leadership and culture: 

“Get the difficult people that you don’t think would be happy in this class to go through it, because this workshop does a lot for allowing people to put down their collars and open themselves up to new ideas and new ways of thinking.”

Interested in exploring the impact of Strengths-Based Leadership for yourself or your team? Join us November 19 + 20 for our public program or contact us to discuss options to bring this work into your company.

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