You don’t succeed because you have no weaknesses; you succeed because you find your strengths and focus on developing habits around them.
According to a recent Gallup poll, only 20% of U.S. workers think their jobs use their talents, and a mere 13% say they find their work meaningful. To be meaningfully engaged, most of us want and need opportunities to turn talents into strengths.
Although people change over time and personalities evolve, scientists have discovered that core personality traits are relatively stable throughout adulthood, as are people’s passions and interests.
So how do we put our talents and interests to good use in the workplace and find meaning in our career?
IDENTIFY YOUR TALENTS
First, you can uncover your talents. Talents are naturally recurring patterns of thoughts, feelings, or behaviors. If you become aware of your propensities (how you spend your time, where you spend your money, etc.), they will guide you to your talents. Or you can use an assessment tool like the CliftonStrengths by Gallup or the free online resource 16Personalities.com.
- What do I enjoy doing?
- What do I prefer others do?
CULTIVATE YOUR STRENGTHS
A strength is a talent or skill that has been honed and perfected with knowledge, skills, and practice. When people supplement their talents with knowledge and skill to the point that they can provide consistent, near-perfect performance in a given activity, they have a strength. Reflection and awareness of your talents helps to transform them into strengths.
LEVERAGE YOUR STRENGTHS TO ENHANCE LEADERSHIP
- Know your strengths/talents
- Use them to be more engaged in work
- Draw on your strengths to engage others
USE STRENGTHS TO ENHANCE YOUR TEAM/ORGANIZATION
- Use shout-outs and validation to remind staff of their strengths
- Connect an employee with a need and an employee with a strength (instead of relying on the leader to always be the “fixer” AND to build connections/strengthen relationships among the team and improve culture)
Did you know?
- “People who use their strengths every day are SIX times more likely to be engaged on the job, which has a positive effect on performance and the company’s bottom line.” -Gallup
- Identifying weaknesses can help you manage or avoid them
- Most people spend more time and energy on their weaknesses than their strengths. Change that and refocus on building strengths!