There’s no one quite like you, is there? You have your own unique set of strengths and capabilities, right?
Yet most people don’t focus enough on their strengths and capabilities. They focus on what they are bad or not so good at and they try to improve in those areas. And that may be important too, as any limiting weaknesses definitely need to be overcome.
But apart from that, strength focus is more important. It’s imperative for leaders to focus on their own strengths AND also to notice and bring out strengths in others. It’s easy to take strengths for granted, to not quite notice them as they are so natural.
It’s easy to think ‘well, that’s not so special – doesn’t everyone have/do that?’. And therefore not quite recognise, value or maximise them. It’s easy to have strength blind spots.
“No matter if you’re just starting out or if you are at the peak of your career, the more you work in your strength zone, the more successful you will be”
John C. Maxwell,
So do you know what your key strengths are? What makes you special and unique? What has taken you to where you are today?
If you’re not sure, here are some ideas to help you start spotting your strengths:
- Think about what your strengths are. The answer to the following questions can start to point you in the right direction:
- What do you enjoy most at work?
- When do you feel most energised at work?
- When do experience “flow” at work? (when things just seem to flow easily and effortlessly and time just flies by)
- When do you deliver the best results?
- Ask others for feedback on what your strengths are (it’s often pretty obvious to others)
- Do a strengths inventory. There’s a number of them out there, like for example StrengthFinder or StrengthScope
When you know what your strengths are, start exploring how you can make the most of them, how you can tap into them more, make more use of them. Consider them within your current and future context and ask yourself “which of these strengths will best help me achieve my goals and ambitions?” And then start thinking about how you can develop them further by adding knowledge, developing skills and using them in new situations and contexts.
Your strengths should absolutely be in your ongoing development plan. There is not just one way of being a leader. Everyone is different and has their own unique set of strengths, skills and experience. The more you can become aware of and use your unique combination the more authentic and effective you can be as a leader.
Enjoy your strengths – there’s no one quite like you!
About the authors
Mandy Flint & Elisabet Vinberg Hearn, award-winning authors of ”The Team Formula”.
Their latest book, multi-award-winning ”Leading Teams – 10 Challenges: 10 Solutions”, published by Financial Times International is a practical tool for building winning teams. You can download a free chapter of the book at www.leadingteamsbook.com
Praise for ”Leading Teams: ”Enjoyable to read. Simple to understand. Practical to implement. A must read for team members or leaders”Debbie Fogel-Monnissen, Executive Vice President, International Markets Finance Officer, Mastercard, NY, USA