The Science of Character: Using Brain Science to Raise Student Self-regulation, Resilience and Respect


In this keynote speech, VIA Institute on Character's Chairman, Dr. Neal Mayerson describes the history and science behind the VIA character strengths, as well as the importance of focusing on character strengths in educational settings. … [Read more...]

Leadership Strengths


Positional and situational leadership As any successful leader will say, it is important to know thyself – to know one’s strengths and how to use them in managing or leading a group of people toward a common mission or goal. This is particularly important for “positional leaders” who have a role at their company to manage a group of people. The more that these positional leaders can bring forth … [Read more...]

VIA as Crochet Hook

slide 11-core values

When Carol Kauffman was approached by a client who needed immediate help relating to students, she began with the VIA Survey. Her client was at a loss – student evaluations were low; she was considered boring; her boss wanted improvement and had suggested she may want to try to ‘just be funny’. Viewing the list of strengths, Carol was able to see that humor was near the bottom, not something her … [Read more...]

Strengths-Based Leadership

leading with strengths

Interview with Megan Dalla-Camina, Director of Strategy for IBM in Australia and New Zealand, where she is also responsible for Organizational Culture and Change and Gender Diversity. Megan is Executive Sponsor of the Positive Leadership Program. 1. Why did IBM A/NZ (Australia/NZ) go down the strengths-based leadership path? We were impressed by the overwhelming research that has emerged … [Read more...]

The Science of Character

your strengths

Character strengths are described as the capacities humans have for thinking, feeling, and behaving. Specifically, they are the psychological ingredients for displaying virtues or human goodness. VIA views each person as having a capacity for expressing any of the 24 character strengths in the VIA Classification. Some strengths are easier and more natural for the individual to express (their … [Read more...]

VIA as Velvet Hammer

strengths coaching

When leaders need to be at the top of their game, yet seem to be missing the mark, Carol Kauffman relies on the VIA Survey. She gets to the heart of her client’s issue by taking a hard look at their top VIA strengths, often finding that they are in contrast to what the client is actually doing day to day. She probes the reasons the client is choosing not to use their strengths in a productive … [Read more...]

VIA Portrait

strengths portait

The VIA Portrait is a dynamic customized graphic tool to access the power of the VIA.  Kathryn Burnett developed this tool in order to see a person’s strengths at a glance, to key into the patterns of their virtues, and to explore any discrepancies among these and how they’re living their daily lives.  She finds this tool to be an ideal way to present the concept of an individual’s unique … [Read more...]

Speed “Dating” to Build Bonds


Often we spend more direct time with our colleagues than with anyone else in our life – including our children, family, friends and partner - yet, many people don’t really know much at all about those with whom they work.  Abraham Lincoln said:  “I do not like that man; I must get to know him better”. Getting to know our colleagues can lead to greater understanding, appreciation and empathy, as … [Read more...]