Episode 24: Do You Know Your Strengths?
Do You Know Your Strengths?
I want to ask you: What was your favourite subject in school?
Maybe it was maths, biology, science, geology or history?
In most cases you might have had a few favourites and not just one.
If you sit and think about it… I’m sure you’ll have at least one subject in mind.
I loved Biology.
Apart from the fact that it was so interesting, reading about all the topics and understanding how organisms flourish and grow.
How it works and why it works….
I was always craving more information and did my own research in addition to the manuals and works books from school.
I also had an excellent teacher. She was really good and we got along very well, so I guess you could say I was one of her star students.
Now, on the other side I wasn’t so good in maths.
As a matter of fact, I almost flunked it.
I’m not ashamed to admit it now, but then…. oh my gosh I didn’t even want to hear the word maths before my heart started racing.
Fear crept over me and I felt sick every time I had to walk into the classroom.
Needless to say, I wasn’t a star student in that class.
And in my final year of high school, there was an influx of new teachers that year….
So for some unexplained reason, my fellow students and I had 4 different maths teachers in one year.
That was tough, but that wasn’t the reason I sucked at maths….
It just wasn’t one of my strengths.
So why on earth am I telling you this?
Well, do you know your strengths?
Firstly, I’d like to recommend a book to you.
This book changed my view on how I see myself daily
And it guided me on what I need to concentrate on, in myself.
The book is called Strength Based Leadership.
It’s from Gallup, written by Tom Rath & Barry Conchie.
This book is based on the Clifton Strengths Finder.
If you purchase the book, then on the inside you’ll get a special code that you can use on their website and do the Clifton Strengths Finder Test.
So, no need to pay for the test if you got the code in the book.
But if you only want to do the test, without buying the book, you need to pay a small fee for the test.
And don’t worry, I have no affiliate link to this book… I just think it’s a valuable resource, specially in the entrepreneurial world.
So yes, it’s all about your strengths and whatever yours are, you need to focus on those strengths and increase them.
Learn and make those strengths stronger.
So when we’re in school, we’re being told that if you’re not good in maths, you need to practise or learn harder.
Don’t worry about biology as you’re already good in that – spend more time on Maths.
And yes, I agree that you need to work hard in school and get good grades.
But once I read this book and did the Strength Finder Test, it taught me a valuable lesson.
By only concentrating on my strengths, I can excel in my niche and grow.
So, if there’s anything that you should do today, it’s finding out what your strengths are and develop those.
Now, when it comes to your strengths, there are four things you need to know about:
1. Your Passion in Life is directly linked to your Strengths
If you love what you do and you have a passion for it, you’ll flourish and get better and better.
You’ll want to give your everything.
You’ll want to get more knowledge in your field and you’ll want to excel and share it with the world.
Think about it…. if you love cooking for your family and you love trying new recipes… well then you become a good cook.
You excel and you want to go and learn new skills to develop your cooking style.
You actively go in search for new recipes to try out and start developing your own dishes – again getting better and better at it.
2. Your Strengths push you to gain more knowledge.
Whatever your strengths are, I promise you that as soon as you do the test and read about what your strengths mean, you’re going to want to learn more about developing those strengths.
There’s this unknown desire in all of us to discover more about ourselves.
Why do we think the way we do?
What makes us better as a human, mother, wife, sister and daughter.
Why do we act in certain ways? What are my strengths and my passions?
If you’re already a female entrepreneur and you’re on this constant roller coaster of finding ways to build & grow your business…. ?
Then I highly recommend you start looking inside yourself first.
Find out what your contribution is to yourself and your business.
Then go out there, develop yourself and grow on a continues basis, daily.
As an example, if you’re a piano teacher.
You can’t possible know everything.
You’ll always want to go out into the world and discover, what you didn’t know about pianos, or the history of music – even what the latest trends are in the industry.
How are children reacting these days to piano music & their eagerness to learn.
How can you use piano music to calm restless or anxious behaviour.
There’s always new things to learn and there always will be.
3. You can’t be good at everything.
That’s OK. Nobody’s good at everything!
Wherever you don’t have certain strengths in your life or business, find resources to compliment those strengths.
Find the right people that can complement you in business and have the opposite strengths as you – not the same.
As an entrepreneur, you can grow your business by employing the right people to start doing some of the work in your business, that you’re not good at.
This will free your time to start concentrating on the bigger picture and work on your business and not in it… leave that to your new employees.
But the important part it to employ those people with the right strengths for the task or role you have available.
For example, the CEO of a business, wouldn’t be sitting in an office, doing the accounts of his company right?
Not would they sit in HR, or at the Reception’s desk or answering all the Customer Service Calls.
Apart from not having the time to do all that, a CEO will not have ALL those strengths to make them exceptionally good in all those departments.
Which is why they employ the right people, with the right skill-set, for each department.
4. Why people Follow you.
Inside the Book as Part 3 – there’s this fantastic concept of why people would follow you as a leader.
And it all comes down the fact that you’re ONLY a leader in your business (or life) if people follow you.
So the question is this: Why do people follow YOU?
Whether it be your team, your existing customers or even your followers on social media…
As Warren Buffet said: “A leader is someone who can get things done THROUGH other people.”
So Gallup conducted a formal study between 2005 – 2008.
Their Goal was to obtain the average person’s opinion about leadership.
Through the study, the found that all followers only had FOUR basic needs from their leaders.
Of course, there were a lot more, but these were the top four needs & wants of followers from their leaders
So, once you’ve done the Strength Finder and you’ve discovered your Top 5 Categories of Strengths…
(There are actually 34, but 5’s the most common ones)
Then think about your own business….
Think about your team and how you lead them with trust, compassion, stability & hope.
Then also think about your customers and how you lead them with trust, compassion, stability & hope.
All in all, you are a leader, with specific strengths and you do have customers, teams and loved ones following you.
Listening to you and letting you guide them on their journeys.
So as a business owner, know who you are and what you offer (not as a product or service), but as one human being to another.
Waking up every morning, knowing that you’re making a difference in someone else’s life…even if it’s just one person!
That needs celebrating.
Do yourself a favour and get to know your strengths.
Develop, grow and use it wisely – not for you, but for those around you.
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Resources Mentioned In This Episode: