When I started out in my law career, I thought I needed to just work hard and develop weaknesses. In fact, in early assessments and job interviews, the question that would often arise was "What do you see as your weaknesses?" I took what I thought was a more "comprehensive" approach to my professional development-- focusing on my strengths AND weaknesses. However, the more I focused on weaknesses, the less I focused on strengths, thinking "I've already got this. " I talked to colleagues who were having similar experiences--going from manager to manager, focusing on identified "opportunities."
Then, years ago I took a leadership training course that introduced me to strength-based development--focusing on your strengths instead of your weaknesses. That’s the secret! And it makes sense. Why focus on the things you’re NOT good at, the deficiency in the performance review, the competency that you can’t seem to master if those things are impertinent to your value add and your desired path?
Rather, seek clarity about what you truly want. Then, identify your personal strengths that are relevant to the path you desire and aligned to your passions. Add to that, how your strengths and passions directly relate to the business needs of your organization and PRESTO! You have found the career sweet spot in which you are best positioned to win.
And I won! When I changed my thinking and my focus, a whole new world opened up for me. I honed in on my strengths and accelerated my career trajectory--moving from a junior management role to a senior management role in just one year!
Now surely, you must do the work. In fact, if you have a deficiency that stands in the way of your desired career path, by all means, either address it or choose another path, particularly if your chosen path is not truly in your career sweet spot.
The reason I’m sharing this is because some of you may be stuck in that place - focusing on weaknesses rather than strengths; not pursuing certain positions because you have every preferred competency except “that one;" hindered by that piece of performance feedback that somehow has little, if anything, to do with your passion, purpose, or organization's need.""If any of this resonates with you, email me here or reach out to me here to connect live. Let's dialogue to find YOUR career sweet spot and accelerate your career trajectory!"