I know a lot of corporate trainers and coaches that use the Strengths Finder Model to guide their clients to success. The idea is if you work on your strengths and use them every day then you will be a better leader. I say, “RUBBISH”.
Here are the 5 reasons why I believe you should be working on your weaknesses instead:
“If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.”
It’s one of my father’s sayings. I love it. Why try working on something if there’s nothing wrong with it? If your car doesn’t work, you won’t fix it, right? You don’t fix your phone if it’s working just fine, right? So why improve your strengths when it’s your weaknesses that are causing you trouble?
If it’s broken – fix it!
It’s just common sense, right? If your relationships don’t work, fix them. If your finances are terrible, fix them. If your health is in the dumps, continuing to eat Big Macs while sitting on the couch watching TV, because your good at it, isn’t going to fix your health, is it?
Talent is overrated
It’s actually a book by Geoff Colvin. In the book, Geoff describes athletes, musicians, and other successful people who became successful because they worked on the difference that made the difference. They worked on their weaknesses and they worked on them CONSISTENTLY. Tiger Woods didn’t practice his tee shots for hours, he practiced his putting. Maybe he’ll start working on relationships soon. We can only hope.
You become well-rounded
You don’t have to be a master at marketing, finance or HR. But you do need to know a little about those areas and the people you lead in those areas otherwise how will you question them? How will you challenge them? How will you know when they are on the top of their game? You need to work on your weaknesses. You don’t have to be a family psychologist or an award-winning investment trader. But you do need to know about how to maintain rapport in your relationships and how to invest for your future. You can give your taxes over to someone else to complete but at the end of the day, if there’s a mistake, the government is going to come looking for you, not the person who prepared your taxes. It’s about responsibility.
Your dealing with life instead of burying your head in the sand
For me, those who work on their strengths and only their strengths are hiding from their fears and their pain. It’s hard working on your weaknesses. It is uncomfortable. And it sucks sometimes. And that’s why we do it. We do it because it stretches us to a whole new level of being. It gets us out of our comfort zone and into a state of constant and never-ending improvement. The more we grow, the more we work on our weaknesses and those weaknesses become strengths, the more self-confidence, fortitude and tenacity we have.
What about you? Are you working on your weaknesses? In what way can you stretch yourself this week? Try it! It’s immensely gratifying to overcome a weakness and make it a another tool for the tool box.