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The Five Powers of Your Strengths

During a recent keynote I asked participants to write a colleague’s strength on a sticky note.  They stood behind the person and wrote a strength, or something they admired about them.

They pressed the strength-note to the person’s back.

It wasn’t long before the entire audience was cackling and laughing. Some people ran across the room to stick a strength-note on a co-worker.

After five minutes, they removed the notes and handed them to each other. One participant came up after my keynote and said, “I’m keeping these notes in my desk for a day when I could use a little encouragement.”

What would happen if I asked them to write weaknesses? I don’t think I would have heard much laughter.

The 5 Powers of Your Strengths:

  1. Strengths point to your area of highest impact.
  2. Strengths give a sense of control.
  3. Strengths fuel energy. Focused energy is the reason things get done. 
  4. Strengths reveal where progress is most likely.
  5. Strengths point to opportunities we might seize. You can’t seize an opportunity with your weaknesses.


Your inner fixer is choking the life out of you and your team.

The world goes dark when you focus on fixing weaknesses.

Don’t ignore weaknesses. Just don’t focus on them. Maybe your heart is compassionate but your appearance is gruff. Don’t keep shooting yourself in the foot. Find ways to give voice to your compassion.

Maybe you need to develop new skills that give expression to your strengths. Perhaps you’re great with compassion but lousy with tough conversations. How might you strengthen compassion to include being good with tough conversations?

Which power of strengths do you find most important? What would you add to the list?

What might you do for yourself or colleagues to more highly focus on developing strengths?


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