There are heaps of self-assessments, ability tests and personality assessment tools out there (I should know, having trained in a fair few). For the most part, they can be useful; particularly when it comes to raising self-awareness – the first step to becoming more emotionally intelligent.
(By the way, if you want to check out a test that you’re being asked to do, or just find out more about how they work, I highly recommend the British Psychological Society’s Psychological Test Centre page for the public.)
The assessments that I see gaining ground with Zoomly’s clients are based on strengths, and I can see why. They do what they say on the tin; are plain-speaking and actionable.
Do you know what your strengths are – really? And does it matter? I think it does. Here are some reasons why you might want to identify your strengths.
Knowing your strengths can:
- Help you have more energy – striving to compensate for weaknesses all the time (whilst sometimes necessary in work situations) can get tiring. Utilising our strengths boosts our energy.
- Light up your career path – when you’re in a role that makes the most of your strengths you’ll be happier and more fulfilled at work.
- Build your resilience, as a) you’ll have a stronger sense of what you’re good at and b) you will be able to make those qualities work for you in tough times when you need to bounce back from adversity.
- Clarify what to do more of – when you know your strengths you can find ways to apply them more consistently. Chances are you may instinctively know one or two strengths, and at the same time there may be others that you’re as yet unaware of.
- Identify what to do less of – we can overplay our strengths (think of the manager who has a strength around detail – ever been on the receiving end of them unwittingly overplaying this with you?) It’s better to get several in balance than overdo it with just one or two.
- Give you a reality check about your weaknesses. Let’s not beat about the bush; we can’t all be equally good at everything. We need to manage our weaknesses, which in some situations may mean getting support and development to help us compensate. In other situations, it may simply be a case of minimising the impact of our weaknesses by delegating to someone who’s got the strength(s) we lack.
- Enable you to contribute to your team more effectively. When everyone in a team knows their strengths and plays to them, the whole team can be significantly more effective.
- Make you a better manager – once you’re aware of and utilising your own strengths you’ll be better at spotting others’ strengths and helping people use them in their work.
- Improve your ability to spot projects, tasks and opportunities that will make the most of your strengths, thus enhancing your performance and career.
- Point you at passions beyond work. Many people find that identifying their strengths helps them reconnect with a forgotten interest or abandoned hobby.
So now you’ve seen the ‘why you should bother’, how do you find out more?
Get in touch to discuss getting your Strengthscope® assessment, which identifies our ‘significant seven’ strengths, our less used strengths – and of course our weaknesses. Strengthscope® can be used with individuals and teams to raise self-awareness, focus and performance.
Dawn is the author of ‘The Feedback Book’, available on Amazon.