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Don’t let your weaknesses weaken you


"You cannot be anything you want to be — but you can be a lot more of who you already are." ~ Tom Rath

We spend a great deal of our time, money and energy focusing on and trying to ‘fix’ our weaknesses, often more palatably referred to as our ‘development opportunities.’ Improving ourselves is of course a vital part of our personal and professional growth, but what is most often overlooked is that you can get better at your strengths too! In fact, most of your real potential lies in building on your strengths rather than trying to address your weaknesses.

This fixation with our weakness is in fact so prevalent that it is a major cause of health issues and disengagement in the workplace.
When we are using our strengths, we feel energized and engaged. We can reach that mythical state of flow where we’re channeling the best of ourselves into our greatest work. We leap out of bed every morning excited to do it all again. Conversely, when we’re in an environment where we’re forced to face our weaknesses every day, we feel exhausted, disengaged and are more likely to get sick. And this is not just the proverbial ‘sicky’ when we can’t face another day at the office; a focus on our weaknesses leads to a measurable impact on our immune system and its ability to fend off viruses.
If the second half of that last paragraph describes you, Leader, chances are you’re feeling stuck, frustrated and overwhelmed. That could mean that you’re in the wrong job, but it could also mean that you’re simply doing it wrong! Trying to do your job according to someone else’s style or expectations can lead you to play to their strengths, not yours. Understanding your own strengths and weaknesses therefore enables you to become more confident, and more authentic, to who you are and what you bring.
Now, even if you’re in a situation where you think you’re probably playing to your strengths, you’re not off the hook from a growth and development perspective, Leader! Bringing those strengths into your awareness is critical to being able to harness them and build upon them more effectively. And those weaknesses still matter – you can’t discount them completely. But the good news is that you don’t have to ‘fix’ them, you just need to outsource them. At some point we humans figured this out and invented teams and organizations as a way to help each other compensate for our weaknesses and pool our strengths. There will ALWAYs be someone out there who loves doing what you hate. Find them, and together you’ll achieve 10x performance together.
If you’re an aspiring, new or even seasoned manager, we have a great tool to help you bring those strengths and weaknesses into your awareness. The Whole-Mind Manager™ begins with a short assessment, after which we’ll send you a report that will reveal your under-utilized and underdeveloped strengths, as well as those pesky weaknesses. For a limited time, we’re offering this powerful tool 100% complimentary to our subscribers.
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