Updated: Sep 5
Suppose you ask a highly-skilled artist to paint a portrait of you. The result would be what you’d expect–a masterpiece that satisfies every requirement. Now, suppose you asked that same artist to change the oil in your car. Would you expect to see the same satisfactory outcome? Probably not.
Each one of us is unique, with our own skills and talents, strengths and weaknesses. Many of us spend our lives tirelessly trying to lessen and eliminate our weaknesses in the hopes of achieving the best version of ourselves. Though working on our weaknesses is important for self growth, what’s even more important is building our strengths–especially within the workplace.
In organizations today, we tend to focus on our weaknesses and shortcomings. The irony is, we’re likely to see much more growth when we focus on strengths.
From weakness to strength
This approach is referred to as strength development and strengths-based coaching. Whereas traditional workplace development and coaching strategies tend to focus on fixing an individual’s weaknesses, this approach shifts the focus to identifying and developing pre-existent strengths and talents. And, leaders who’ve implemented this approach have seen immediate and powerful impacts in the workplace.
Gallup recently found that employers who focused on Weakness development often experienced negative employee relations and mediocre employee performances. However, those employers who switched to a more Strength-based coaching or development style saw, on average, an immense growth in employee engagement, employee performance, and overall profits.
With this in mind, consider three things you can do now to shift to a Strength-based development approach in your organization:
1. Be intentional
Shifting from one mindset or practice to another requires an enormous amount of willpower–and very clear intention. In order to cultivate a workplace in which every individual is performing to their highest potential, you must be intentional about it. Everything, from your mindset to your words and actions, must reflect your intention to build and develop the strengths of your employees.
2. Be open to learning
In order to build the strengths of those around you, you must first learn what those strengths are. Workshops, retreats, and team building exercises are extremely effective ways of discovering an individual’s greatest strengths. In fact, at the Growth Group we offer Team Strengthening services and practices specifically designed to identify the strengths of each team member, evaluate their fit with their respective responsibilities, and work with the team to strengthen its effectiveness.
3. Be consistent
The Strength-Based coaching approach is proven to increase employee engagement, employee performance, and even overall profits. To reap the full benefits of this approach, and make a drastic difference in your workplace, you must make a constant effort to mold and develop each member’s strengths. This endeavor must continue despite any initial successes or improvements. Remember: when done correctly, the strength-development approach doesn’t merely yield results in the workplace, it can empower individuals to become the best version of themselves.
Strength-based coaching is one of the best methods for achieving workplace goals and individual growth. When applied correctly, it far outranks other approaches that focus primarily on weaknesses and/or apply negative reinforcement.
Learn more about the power of strength-based coaching and what it can do for your organization. We’re here to help you make that shift.
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