Playing to Your Strengths
By Contributor Marlene Cameron, MBA, CFA, CPC
“The best strategic advice is this: know your strengths and take advantage of them”.
– Greg Norman, Australian entrepreneur and retired professional golfer
Your strengths can include natural gifts and abilities, a built-in aptitude or mindset, a combination of ‘intelligences’ that can include conceptual, relational, mathematical, etc. or even your personality traits that make you especially suited to a job or vocation
In my coaching practice, I have used the DiSC Dimensions of Behaviour assessment that helps individuals uncover their innate behaviour style. D stands for Dominance – which can indicate traits like daring, demanding and decisive. i signifies Influence – outgoing people who can be energetic, enthusiastic and entertaining. S is for Steadiness – individuals who are concerned with the well-being of the team, and prefer predictability, harmony and inclusion. C indicates Conscientiousness–systematic, analytical individuals who value quality and accuracy.
If I were to assemble a well rounded golf foursome, I might assign each of the dimensions of behaviours to the following roles:
D the big driver off the tee; the bold risk taker hits it with all she’s got.
i the fairway shot-maker; even if the drive is off course, the i player stays optimistic, enthusiastic and stays in the game. She inspires and motivates others.
S the calm, steady and methodical shot-maker that chips the ball safely on the green; setting up the ball for the C player to make the putt. You can count on her.
C the careful, consciousness, designated putter for that all important shot, hits the ball in the hole for the par. She takes her time to analyze and deliver accuracy.
In your organization, it might look like this. Let’s say the company runs out of pencils and needs to order new ones. The conversation regarding acquiring new pencils might sound like this among the four DiSC Dimensions and Behaviour styles.
i – Influence: “Great idea! – Let’s get those cool new–fangled ones”
S – Steadiness: “We could ask everyone’s opinion, see what most people want”
C – Conscientiousness: “We should research the best suppliers and prices”
D – Dominance: “Who cares, just order the damn things!”
The truth is, individuals bring unique preferences, values and viewpoints that contribute to the collective wisdom, allegiance and excellence of the team. By honouring your strengths, qualities of character and unique perspective, you bring the best of who you are to the game and make the greatest contribution to your and the team’s success.
As a parting shot, I offer this quotation by Steven Covey, “Strength lies in differences, not in similarities”.
About the Author
An award-winning executive coach and emotional intelligence expert, Marlene brings her business savvy, financial smarts and intuitive wisdom to help women in business thrive. Her Decision Clarity Optimizer system shows owners and leaders how to have UNSHAKEABLE belief, trust and confidence in making critical decisions that impact their wellbeing, success and freedom. Visit Marlene on her website and learn more about her services.
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