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Strength-Based Leadership

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  1. Strength-Based Leadership Paul M. Whisenand, Ph.D

  2. Foundational: Two Cornerstones • I Self Awareness “The Unexamined life is not worth living.” Socrates 400 BC • II Strengths “The effective executive (leader) builds on strengths—their own strengths, the strengths of superiors, colleagues, subordinates; and, on the strengths of the situation.” Peter F. Drucker, 1966 “If you’re going to work for me, you’ve got to show me what you’re good at.” Clint Eastwood, from the movie “Gran Torino” I-1

  3. The Players in S-B Leadership • Some Early Practitioners: Alex /Gemghis /Suleiman /Ignatius /Bonapart /Winters • The Idea Guy: Drucker (He was always ahead of conventional wisdom. Unfortunately, most managers remain dedicated to correcting individual weaknesses and molding the person to conform to the job rather than empowering an employee’s strengths.) • Scientists: Dr. Don – Dr. Marty – Dr. Steve – Dr. Dan – Dr. George • Modern Practioners: Marcus – Keith – Dominic - Paul I - 2

  4. THE LAW OF LARGE NUMBERS Over two million workers have answered the Clifton Strengths Finder profile question “What percentage of a typical day do you spend playing to your strengths?” Anonymously record your answer to this question on a 3 X 5 card with: (1) never; (2) rarely; (3) sometimes; (4) a lot; or, (5) most of the time. I - 3

  5. CLIFTON FOUND Only 17% answered “most of the time.” This result is terrible, wastefully low. The truth is, most of us are not our organization’s greatest asset. I - 4

  6. Over the next few days you will be encouraged to exercise, capitalize, and reenergize the strengths that got you here and will successfully take you onward. The quest begins now by your careful examination of a list of strengths compiled by a group of renowned scientists who researched all of the benchmark writings from 7000 BC to 2000 AD. I - 5

  7. AWARE OF WHAT? All of the evidence to this point in time(meta analysis, scientific research, case studies and anecdotal evidence) point to five key properties that signature-strength leaders are acutely aware of their… • CHARACTER • VISION • WELLBEING • EMPOWERMENT • DELIVERY STRENGTHS I - 6

  8. THE SAGE RETURNS In 1997, Peter Drucker wrote again about strength-based leadership…..”Successful careers are not planned, they develop when we are prepared for opportunities because we are aware of our strengths.” I - 7

  9. WHAT’S COMING? We will eventually cover each one of the five properties, remembering that self knowledge is the keystone that makes your strengths functional—and, they are inter-operable. Self awareness is not a one-shot deal. It’s a continuum of growth, change, and wisdom. Are you the same person now as that person who put on a set of bars or strips a few months ago? I hope not. Because if you haven’t changed, you are wasting valuable leadership time. I - 8