2011 Strength Audit: What Should You Do More of?
Now with 2011 upon us people use this time to think of goals and ways to improve themselves. Often it is something they want to do better in and we all know how long this motivation lasts. Why is that? The goals are too broad and extreme and may focus on things they are not good at. We think the opposite of bad is good, but it is really just moving to "not bad."
The strength audit offers a different approach that is more empowering, reinforcing and productive. There is a plethora of research identifying the values of the strength perspective.
The strength audit puts the magnifying glass on what you do very well and may need to do more of. I sometimes tell clients we are not looking for "makeovers" but "moreovers."
I like Marcus Buckingham's definition of a strength as something that gives you energy. So look at these three audit questions to identify what are your key strengths, that in 2011 you will do more of?
1. Pre -experience: What do look forward to doing at work?
What are you excited about or have positive anticipation for?
What really gets your juices going?
Write down the top 2-3 things that you can think of in this category.
2. During the experience: What are you doing when you feel very energized and focused? When are all your facilities are optimized? In psychology this phenomena is called "flow". You are at your best and feel very connected with the process and/or the people in it. The work itself may feel effortless and time may go by very fast.
Are these the same things in number one or is there something different you want to add to the list?
3. After the experience: In reflecting about the experience there is an after glow. You feel good about what you did or contributed. Again you feel energized by this experience. There is a warmth or pleasurable feeling that comes over you. You brain is releasing dopamine as you think about it.
As you think about it, are these the same things in number one or is there something different you want to add to the list?
Now looking at your list, what do you need to do to make these activities more frequent? Even doing them 10-15 % more will be beneficial. What "micro-initiatives" will create macro impacts for you? In 2011 these should be your goal. If you do your strengths more, what things will you do less of?
These weaknesses are the things that are the opposite of a strength they drain your energy. Who can you delegate these tasks to, so you can focus more on your strengths? They may actually like doing these and are energized by doing them. Knowing this about your team members will create a strong and synergistic team.
So here is the start of your 2011 plan:
1. What are your main strengths that energize you the most?
2. What or who drains you the most?
3. What needs to happen so you can do more of your strengths?
4. What resources do you need to build on your strengths and lessen your drainers?
For me, I know I am in my strength when working with new coaching clients identifying and exploring their strengths and concerns. The individual uniqueness of each person and identifying their capabilities is energizing for me. Creating news ways to communicate in a graphic manner excites me.
Another strength is working with groups in training or speaking integrating information and creating tools and tips to meet their needs in a just in time focus.
Weaknesses or drainers for me are doing paper work, filing and intense detailed work, like creating training notebooks. These things I delegate to others as a much as I can.
So for 2011 what are you going to do more of?
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