I have a lot of problems with how corporates are run, in terms of how people are treated, often being forced to be square pegs in round holes. This is one reason why I work with Coincidencity, a group which is helping companies find new ways of working, including how to empower their staff and give them room to be who they are instead of leaving their "best self" at the door.
In the long ago days when I was a corporate employee, one aspect I hated were the annual appraisals. I generally did well in them and got great feedback, but there was always the bit where, having been quickly patted on the head about my strengths, an inordinate amount of time was then spent on the weaknesses. These were zoned in on and money spent sending me on courses to make me better at things that I was quite happy not being good at.
Now, I am not against learning new skills or developing new talents - far from it! I spend a great deal of time reading books, asking questions, watching videos and listening to podcasts to broaden my knowledge and skills. However, I often wondered what would happen if we stopped looking at the not so brilliant areas and concentrated on the best bits. Instead of getting you better at something for which you have no real aptitude or interest, what if instead we said, "Okay, you are brilliant on the phone - what can we get you doing which uses more of that?" "How can we make more of your talent for lateral thinking/problem solving/empathy/design..."
I suspect you would get people more engaged, happier and effective in their organisations.
And in life in general, what would happen if we stopped focussing on the things we think we "should" be good at but aren't - baking cookies, growing your own vegetables, losing weight, running a marathon - and concentrated on the things we are great at? If we stopped beating ourselves up for our supposed 'lack' and revelled in our super powers?
Here is a little story to illustrate the point. I had a friend who spent every relationship worried because her cooking skills were less than impressive. Her Mother had told her she would only be able to get and keep a man if she could whip up a perfect 3 course meal out of a box of eggs, a pint of beer and a bag of nails (or something like that - I don't do cooking). Every relationship ended badly because of her lack of confidence. Then she met a wonderful man and decided that if he loved her, he would love her warts and all. When the subject of cooking came up, she said, "I kiss better than I cook." He proposed immediately and they lived happily every after on salads and stir fries.
Ditch the weaknesses, embrace the strengths and it could turn your life around.
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