Monday, April 4, 2011

Play To Your Passions and Strengths!

by Laura Goodrich

Clarify your strengths so you can leverage and use them
daily. You will be happier!

A strengths assessment provides insight that will guide you

We've all heard "Play to your strengths." It's not new. It makes sense. Most
people say, "Duh."

The shocking reality is that only 20% of employees say they are using their
strengths daily! This fact was proven by the Gallup organization through
interviews conducted with more than 1.7 million employees from 101 companies in 63 countries.

Herein lies an opportunity for forward-thinking organizations. Hundreds of
assessment tools exist that enable individuals to determine their greatest
strengths (two I recommend are Now, Discover Your Strengths and
StrengthsFinder 2.0). I recommend that you complete a strengths assessment,
and if you're a manager, have your employees complete an assessment. Once
you clarify your strengths, leverage this knowledge to align yourself with
the projects, people and initiatives that will allow you to bring the best
you have to offer to the tasks at hand. Recognize that it takes work. The
Latin core of the word passion means to suffer, thus you need to care about
something enough to keep on going at those times when it might be easier to
stop or be distracted by something else.

How do you recognize a strength? For starters, it comes easy for you. In
fact, it probably comes so easy you take it for granted. We often overlook
and underestimate the good that we can do when we are playing to our
passions and strengths. It takes a lot less effort than other things, and it
brings the best of ourselves to the project or challenge. It's exactly what
organizations need today.

When we are trying to be everything to everyone, it's easy to end up down
the path that keeps us busy and pays the bills but yields little
satisfaction and drains us.

When you're doing work that you're passionate about, you lose track of time
and you're filled with energy. Look for times and activities in which you
lost yourself. Reflect back on your life, even back to your youth. What were
you passionate about, and what were you interested in? Knowing this is the
place to start. If you don't know it just yet, stick with it until it
reveals itself to you. With the right determination, study, and
conversation, you'll figure it out.

You might feel that you already know your strengths, but I still encourage
you to complete an assessment. It will provide insight that will guide you.
Once you know your strengths, you can leverage them. You will be able to
more easily and clearly articulate how your strengths will serve the
project, your team, and the company. Everybody wins.

If you want to drive yourself, your team and your organization to a positive
future, I am excited to offer the process and toolkit that can get you
there. Check out the resources at

Laura Goodrich is a Workforce Innovator, Filmmaker, Author and Speaker. She specializes in workplace dynamics and change and for 17 years has passionately helped people; teams and organizations create THE positive outcomes needed to succeed in this rapidly changing world. She is an advanced trained coach and in 2007 was identified as one of the top ten executive coaches internationally by one of the nations largest coaching and training organizations. She is a host on the regional television show Life To the Max, and also hosts the radio show FutureWork.

Laura is also the author of the film, “Shifting Years – Leverage the Power of Generations,” the soon to be released film, “On a High Note” and the book and film “Seeing Red Cars.” LiveMint and the Wall Street Journal have identified Seeing Red Cars – Driving your Yourself, Your Team and Your Organization to a Positive Future as a top five leadership book for 2011! Forbes magazine identified it as a “must read,” for leaders who want what it takes to accomplish positive change. Her business stories and experience from all over the globe have earned her the reputation as someone who can create positive change in the most challenging of times.

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