Strength-based leadership is defined as the ability to identify and make best use of not only your own strengths, but also the strengths of your team.
This is done by moving away from traditional employee development methods, which typically zone in on areas which people need to improve on, and rather highlighting where they excel and understanding how that contributes to the greater good of the organisation.
In essence, it’s less about trying to fix or change people and more about letting their hidden potential and personal interests shine.
Why is this important?
- As a leader, a strength-based approach allows you to delegate more effectively, thereby also empowering your team to take on more responsibility.
- It also helps with relationship building, because you’re no longer just a boss waiting to point out a misstep, instead you’re building a symbiotic partnership where your strengths compliment theirs.
- In a strength-based environment, everyone’s able to concentrate on what they do (and what they enjoy) best.
- Asking for help is no longer a sign of weakness, but rather an acknowledgement of the important contribution someone else makes to the overall success of the team.
- An environment of shared responsibility stimulates innovation and creativity while also building the confidence of each and every team member.
- And of course, a happy team with team members who feel valued also leads to improved job satisfaction and higher staff retention which allows you to hold on to and further develop your talent pool.
It all sounds pretty simple but putting strength-based leadership into practice does require a bit of a mind shift. To get you started, we recommend using the following guidelines to help shape your strength-based environment:
- Know yourself first
Understanding your own strengths and weaknesses is the first step to becoming a better leader. By knowing yourself, it’ll be easier to spot complimentary skills in others to ensure that you’re building the strongest, most diversely skilled team possible.
- Don’t force projects or tasks on people
Instead, try to match projects and tasks with a person’s interests and particular skillset. Also create buy-in by having an open discussion about why you think they’d be a great fit.
- Create a safe space
The team needs to feel comfortable to share their passions and interests in an open and honest way. This is essential for building trust and encouraging team members to try their hand at tasks they might not typically take on.
- Encourage diversity
Diversity is one of the cornerstones of a strength-based team. Different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives form the basis for active debate, collaboration and new insights which help create new and improved ways of working.
People, process and technology development and improvement is what the team as Analyze strives for. If you’re looking for someone to help run a strength assessment within your team or broader organisation, give us a call on 021 447 5696 or get in touch by using the contact form on our contact page here or visit our LinkedIn page here.