From strength to strength: How employees’ strengths can energise teams to perform
Over the last decade, numerous studies published by the likes of Forbes, Gartner and Gallup, all indicate the business benefits of focusing on employees’ strengths, rather than their weaknesses. By doing so, a substantial increase in productivity was observed, as well as enhanced customer services. This is due to the fact that employees whose strengths are leveraged, get more positive feedback on their work and are subsequently more motivated and engaged.
Similarly, it has become evident that when it comes to high performing leaders, these influencers are those who have learnt to utilise their strengths more effectively than others. Based on my own work with leadership and management over the years, I have also seen that focusing on employee strengths is the answer – I’ve personally witnessed the benefits gained from that. Join me as I delve into a few ways to inspire employees to greatness, by tapping into their strengths.
The key to focusing on strengths rather than weaknesses is in direct contradiction of how we are wired. As humans, we innately want to fix what is flawed. We are problem-solvers, and we want to find the gaps so that we can fill them. This approach often flows over into our work, how we tackle the projects we work on and how we evaluate employees.
This is exactly where the issue lies because when we focus on the gaps and weaknesses, we’re not utilising the strengths that are available to us in the workplace. According to Forbes, it all comes down to a simple truth: that there is no need to fix employees – we should simply focus on their strengths and passions.
In doing so, we not only empower our employees, but we also create employees who truly love the brand and what it stands for. Ultimately, this will ensure a committed and engaged work force who are ambassadors of the brand and who are motivated to take the company to a whole new level.
It’s all about diversity
One of the main elements to take into consideration when focusing on strengths is to ensure that employers build diverse teams. When you have diversity in terms of perspective, cultures, passions, etc. you can build a team with a wide variety of strengths that are able to take on different challenges and bring new ideas and viewpoints to the table.
This approach ensures that a workplace breeds diverse ideas instead of stagnating or creating a one-track mindset.
Culture and strength
To best harness strengths in the workplace and achieve strong business results, it’s important to invest time and energy in creating an engaging and positive work culture where people feel motivated and supported. There is no way that employees will flourish and grow their strengths if the culture and environment aren’t encouraging it. Management Guru Peter Drucker said it best when he said: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast”.
Leaders set the tone
When it comes to empowering employees through their strengths, it’s important to note that it all starts at the top. The shift starts with the leader. When leaders know and understand what drives and energise them, they will be able to know how to utilise and grow the strengths of others too. They will be able to use strengths effectively and inspire employees to do the same. This strengths-awareness from the leader can be truly engaging, inspiring and contagious. It will drive the team to focus inwardly on their own strong points, and this, in turn, will be a driving factor in collaboration and productivity.
I firmly believe that focusing on strengths to encourage employees is where companies also foster cultures of innovation and growth. Strength is truly powerful in the work environment and it has the ability to overcome many challenges.
If you need more information about how you can become a company focused on strengths, please feel free to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org to delve deeper into the potential power of harnessing employee strengths.