In Strengths Based Leadership the authors said, “A leader needs to know his strengths as a carpenter knows his tools, as a physician knows the instruments at her disposal. What great leaders have in common is that each truly knows his or her strengths.” If you want to maximize your strengths then it requires avoiding the common myths that prevent you from being efficient in your strengths and leadership. I have found at least 2 strength myths leaders need to avoid:
Myth 1-Strengthen weaknesses- In the past decade, researchers and experts have discovered that trying to develop a weakness into a strength is counterproductive. If you put energy, effort, and time at trying to develop a weakness then it will prevent you from becoming stronger in areas of your strengths. It’s important to remember you will never become great in your weak areas. Donald Clifton said, “Each person’s greatest room for growth is in the areas of his or her greatest strength.” Leaders are effective when they focus and develop areas of strengths.
Myth 2- Be well rounded- In Now, Discover Your Strengths the authors say,
“Our research into human strengths does not support the extreme, and extremely misleading, assertion that ‘you can play any role you set your mind to,’ but it does lead us to this truth: Whatever you set your mind to, you will be most successful when you craft your role to play to your signature talents most of the time.”
If you try to be good in all areas then you will not be able to become the best in your strength zones. Leaders need to remember a master of all is actually a master of none. When it comes to your strengths the key is to be narrow and not broad. To focus on your specific strengths and become strong in those areas while avoiding the myth of being well rounded.
Question: Can you think of any other strength myths?