Sincerity Doesn’t Erase Ignorance: 7 Ways to Capitalize on the Strength of Your Leaders

Everyone knows what you don’t do well.

Confused or inexperienced leaders pay too much attention to people who point out their lack and challenge them to improve weaknesses.


Ignorant helpfulness:

“To focus on weakness isn’t only foolish, it’s irresponsible.” Peter Drucker

People who focus on improving your weaknesses might be sincere, but they’re ignorant. An ignorant helpful person does damage. Sincerity doesn’t erase ignorance.


It’s useful to know what you don’t do well. Not so you can improve it, but so you can avoid it. The things you can’t do well never produce remarkable success.

A developed strength always takes you further than an improved weakness.

The important question is what strength should you develop, not what weakness should you improve.  

  1. Make strengths productive.
  2. Compensate for weaknesses.
  3. Eliminate self-defeating behaviors.

In order to maximize a leader’s success, capitalize on the one thing that makes them remarkable.

7 ways to capatalize on the strength of your leaders:

  1. Accept that leaders have limitations and weaknesses. Forget about building on a leader’s weaknesses. 
  2. Don’t put your hopes on reforming your leader. Figure out how to compensate for your leader’s weaknesses. 
  3. What can your leader do really well? How can you help your leader build on his/her strengths?
  4. How has your leader succeeded in the past? How can you help them do more of that?
  5. What relationships, interactions, and situations bring out the best in your leader?
  6. How might you compensate for your leader’s weakness?
  7. What should your leader stop doing because it’s outside his/her strength?

Bonus: What does your leader need to know to make his/her strengths productive?

How might followers help their leaders capitalize on their strengths?

This post is inspired by, The Effective Executive, by Peter Drucker. (Chapter 5)

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