Most of us were taught in school to work on our weaknesses. The problem is that, after years of doing this, what you end up with is a lot of really strong weaknesses!
There‘s so much more to be gained by focusing on your strengths, the activities in life that you’re just great at. When you‘re working at them, you have confidence, momentum, energy, capability, expertise, and enthusiasm. When you‘re spending time on activities you aren’t good at, it drains your energy and
saps your creativity, and you have little to show for all your time and effort in the way of results.
Focusing on your strengths is one of the greatest multipliers at your disposal. Your strengths are built-in. The challenge is in recognizing these assets, because to you they seem so natural: “Can’t everyone do
this?” In fact, no, they can’t. So there are huge returns to be gained by identifying your natural talents and focusing your time on doing just those things, leaving the rest to other people and systems.
When you surround yourself with the people and technologies that excel at all the things you don‘t, you have a much more productive system—one that has far fewer bottlenecks, roadblocks, inefficiencies,
So what stops us from just doing what we‘re good at and putting that support in place? Again, it often goes back to our early training and the belief that everyone has to do things they don‘t like doing. The problem with that belief is that we don‘t ask, “Why?” or “Who else could do this better?” or “How else
could this get done?” It keeps us from getting resourceful, and keeps us from growing and expanding our gifts. The other thing that stops people is a fear of delegating — or of investing in people to whom to delegate.
The solution to both of these blocks is developing a new set of habits that will allow you to spend more time in your areas of greatest ability. Recognize, assess, and focus on your strengths.
Make good decisions that will put you into a position to fully use and leverage them. Pick the opportunities, relationships, and customers that make the best use of your strengths and talents, then
delegate all the other parts of your process to people who have greater strengths in those areas.
For instance, if sales is where you excel, you’ll benefit from delegating the administration and maintenance of existing business and focusing on what brings in new money. If deal-making is your forté, don’t get bogged down in the implementation of what you’re selling; rather, build a team who can follow through on those details while you go out and secure more new business. Likewise, if innovation is your biggest contribution to the growth of your company, the expense of delegating day-to-day operations to team members is far outweighed by the opportunities you can cook up when you have the time to do that creative work.
One of the things entrepreneurs work on is identifying their strengths and putting strategies into place to allow them to spend more time working on what they do best, while delegating the rest to team members who have strengths in other areas. Both entrepreneurs and team members benefit from this partnership, which is something you might not recognize at first. Every time you hold on to something that’s not a strength for you but is for someone else, you’re actually depriving that person of an opportunity to do something they love and to excel at it. Believe it or not, there’s someone out
there who loves to do everything you hate doing. It may be hard to think that someone could love filing or paperwork or cleaning up your messes and organizing you, but for a talented administrative assistant who’s in the right job, that’s just what lights them up.
Focusing on your strengths and delegating weaknesses is an ongoing process, because as you do it, you keep seeing new areas where you want to focus even more and new things that you want to let go of. The trick is to make it a habit and train your team to help you, so you’re always making sure that
you stay focused on the activities that have the greatest multiplying effect on your results!