When my Dad was nearing the end of 8th grade, his teacher brought my Dad and grandparents in to talk about my Dad’s future.
The teacher suggested putting my Dad on a track to become an engineer by sending him to Brooklyn Tech High School.
Long story short, my Dad went on to get his engineering degree from the University of Notre Dame and to help design, create and engineer such cool things as spacecraft for NASA’s Mariner Jupiter-Saturn mission, fighter jets, and the Boeing 777 aircraft.
My Dad was fortunate that his teacher identified, focused on and gave my Dad the tools to build his strengths.
Unfortunately, in our schools and in our workforce, such a strengths-based approach doesn’t always exist.
In his groundbreaking book, StrengthsFinder, author Tom Rath examines reams of Gallup data to find that our society too often focuses on our weaknesses, to the detriment of our success and our engagement at school, work and play.
“From the cradle to the cubicle, we devote more time to our shortcomings than to our strengths,” writes Rath. “When we’re able to put most of our energy into developing our natural talents, extraordinary room for growth exists.”
“So,” Rath continues, “a revision to the ‘You-can-be-anything-you-want-to-be’ maxim might be more accurate: You cannot be anything you want to be — but you can be a lot more of who you already are.’”
I’m a big proponent of the StrengthsFinder program, and I strongly suggest you check it out
You can take your Strengths Assessment to become aware of your strengths.
It’s made a big change in how I do business, and I think it could have the same impact for you.