“I’m a jack of all trades.”
When the business owner said this, I immediately thought about strengths. Is it possibly to really be a “jack of all trades?”
I’m not convinced.
Perhaps someone can get involved in lots of different things. They may enjoy variety. They may have talents in many areas.
I just don’t buy the idea that anyone performs well at everything.
Do you? I hope not.
I think a strengths-based approach better describes the average person. Tom Rath of The Gallup Organization designed a study to identify the top 5 strengths of each person called Strengths Finder 2.0. I assume there are other strengths-based assessments, but Strengths Finder 2.0 is our preferred option.
As I coach and consult with Fortune 500 companies, non-profits, and individual leaders, I routinely find my clients confused about the essentials of strengths-based leadership. Read below for the 4 Essentials of Strengths-Based Leadership:
1) Realize You Aren’t Good At Everything.
I hope that statement didn’t hurt too bad. A person simply cannot achieve great results at everything.
Make the wise and humble leadership decision to admit where you are weak. After all, your team already knows it and would likely appreciate hearing you admit it.
2) Structure Your Time Around Your Strengths.
The tasks I hate turn into unreasonable and unwise uses of time. They could not possibly be called strengths.
Structure your schedule around your strengths. Don’t just allot a few hours. Delegate tasks that primarily involve weaknesses. Then, spend the bulk of your time actively using your strengths.
3) Shift Away from Weakness Fixing.
In the unforgettable words of Bob Newhart, “Just Stop It!” In all seriousness, you will likely always struggle to excel at your weaknesses.
When you identify consistent tasks that involve weaknesses, be intentional about addressing the issue. If you don’t, you’ll likely find yourself spinning your wheels over and over.
4) Help Others Use Their Strengths.
When you primarily use your strengths and delegate your weaknesses, you create opportunities to help others use their strengths. Strengths-based leadership frees you and your team to do what you were made to do.When you use your strengths and delegate your weaknesses, you create opportunities to help others. Click To Tweet
Use coaching skills, such as open-ended questions, to help others identify strengths, evaluate their current workload/schedule, and redesign their work processes.
Warning: this will never happen usually unless you intentionally spend focused time in assessment, evaluation, and redesign.
What steps do you need to take to better create a culture of strengths based leadership in your organization or business?
Let us know.