You Aren’t Fit to Lead if Your Greatest Strength is Seeing Weakness

You aren’t fit to lead if your greatest strength is seeing weakness.

Smart talented leaders find it easy to point out inadequacies, describe what’s wrong, and explain disagreements.


There’s no creativity in pointing out weakness.

There’s no imagination in disagreement.

There’s no innovation in explaining what can’t be done.

There’s no added value in tearing someone down.

5 things ineffective leaders love to say:

Ineffective leaders find fault like it’s the only thing leaders do.

  1. I disagree.
  2. That won’t work.
  3. We already tried that.
  4. You’re wrong.
  5. You should be better at….

The ability to see wrong, point out weakness, highlight mistakes, and declare deficiencies is important and necessary. But don’ts, won’ts, and can’ts stabilize the past.

Warning: It’s safe and powerful for leaders with authority to prevent change, end exploration, and tell people what they can’t do.

5 things effective leaders love to ask:

The future belongs to the curious.

  1. Have you thought about…? Offer alternatives when you disagree. What if… ?
  2. How about… ? Have the courage to make something better, rather than simply pointing out inadequacy.
  3. You’re great at … . How can you bring your strengths to this challenge? The future depends on the strengths of the people around the table.
  4. How might we make this better?
  5. What are we trying to achieve and why does it matter?  When you’re ready to point out a fault, ask yourself, “What are we trying to accomplish?” 

The power of imperfection:

The pursuit of excellence is a pursuit. In other words, you always fall short.

  1. Develop imperfect solutions. 80% is good enough for most things.
  2. Launch early.
  3. Test often.
  4. Adapt as you go.

3 tips:

  1. Notice three strengths for every weakness you point out.
  2. Say what you see when you see progress.
  3. Leverage positive energy. Figure out how to apply energy to positive outcomes.

How might leaders overcome the tendency to see weakness and point out fault?looking for a dynamic presentation banner