Aim for “Sharp,” Not Well Rounded

Every single person on the planet has strengths and weaknesses. It may seem logical that if you want to improve yourself, your leadership, etc., you ought to identify your weaknesses and then commit to focusing on improving in those specific areas. However, I disagree. As I wrote in Be An Inspirational Leader:


“The general consensus seems to be if you’re already doing something well, no need to further develop it. Instead, pick something you’re not very good at and throw your energies into improving in that area. ‘Well rounded’ is the prize to set your sights on. But I totally disagree with this outlook and strategy.”


I believe it is far more effective to focus on your strengths than your weaknesses. To truly achieve greater success, focus on improving and further strengthening those areas in which you (or your team) are strongest! Just as you shouldn’t neglect a strong muscle or it will begin to weaken, don’t neglect your natural strengths and talents or they too will begin to diminish.


So instead, determine what you already do well, then work on getting even better at those things! Marcus Buckingham puts it this way:


“The best leaders are not well rounded, they’re sharp. Their teams are well rounded. Precisely because they’ve figured out where they’re sharp, and then surrounded themselves with people who are sharp where they are blunt.”


I think that’s brilliant. Don’t aim for well rounded, aim for sharp! Then surround yourself with an excellent team of people (or group of friends) who shore up your weak spots and are sharp where you are blunt. An excellent strategy for achieving greater success!


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I am a leader, speaker, and author who is passionate about Leadership Excellence and Achieiving Greater Success. I am the author of the books Be An Inspirational Leader(2016) and Presidential Leadership (2013), and deliver keynote presentations on those topics and several others.

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