In this article, we focus on strengths-based leadership.
How is strengths-based leadership compared to other types of leadership?
It is based on the idea that each person on your team is a leader in their own realm.
The old model of the leader who has to tell each employee what to do and how to do it in every situation seldom works – not for the leader or for the employee. Beyond the initial job training and sharing of systems and protocol, there should be a point at which the employee is given a role of leadership within defined boundaries – and the leader serves as a mentor in their growth as a leader.
Millennials are accustomed to independence; and Baby Boomers, quite frankly, have accumulated enough wisdom, skill, and knowledge that micro-management does not appeal to them, either.
What works for both groups, and those in between, is a respectful recognition of their strengths and allowing them to operate within their strengths inside their respective roles.
What this means to you as a leader is that you can (and should) be a leader of leaders, not a leader of those who simply follow. If you choose the right people for the right positions based on strengths assessments, you will simply need to determine the “what” and they will intuitively (and quite effectively and efficiently) determine and carry out the “how.”
It is based on mastering and functioning in your strengths, not someone else’s.
There was a time when the focus was very much on overcoming weaknesses – on being adaptable to any role within the organization. The problem was…it didn’t work!
Even the most dedicated members of your team have areas that are not their strengths. They may try to adapt because they are dedicated, but this ultimately will lead to stress – physical stress, team stress, and perhaps even organizational stress. Focusing on correct positioning of each team member so they are able to operate in their strengths at least 70% of the time will reduce the level of stress – including yours – and yield better results.
It is based on exponential results.
Where team members are allowed to lead in their strengths, the results are like compound interest.
- It eliminates the wasted time of “getting up to speed” on a skill. There is little to no learning curve.
- It eliminates the wasted time of “developing a process” – if it is their strength, they likely already have a highly efficient process in place.
- It eliminates the wasted energy that comes from “lack of confidence” – given projects that are within their strengths-zone will allow them to move forward with confidence, and the results they achieve will strengthen their confidence muscle even more.
- It eliminates the wasted energy that comes from having to “motivate” them to do the work. If they love what they do, they will be self-motivated to do it.
Eliminating these roadblocks means they get results – more effectively, more immediately, and more quantifiably.
As a leader of leaders, you must know and lead in your strengths.
And those on your team must do the same.
Strengths-based leaders across the organization create a highly effective team that gets measurable results.
To learn more about Strengths Mapping for your team, click here.
As the CEO of Strength Leader Development, Deb Ingino is a highly sought-after international executive mentor, coach, trainer and speaker. Deb is well versed in global business operations and helps business leaders and their teams to discover and leverage their strengths, so they can create highly collaborative teams that deliver great results. With a refreshingly direct style, Deb helps leaders and their teams to deliver profitable results. Connect with Deb to learn more about her mentorship and coaching programs to equip you with advanced strategies to elevate your results.