Since Brian and I founded Leadership Vision Consulting 14 years ago, our company has evolved in a number of significant ways. People, including myself, have come and gone, and come back again to work for our group.
The most significant change came a few years ago when Brian decided to ditch all of what we were doing around assessments and only use the Clifton StrengthsFinder tool. Up until that point we used MBTI, and other instruments to help us do our work with organizations.
Focusing on what we were best at has catapulted the business forward, but why?
Focus on Our Strengths
Working only with the Clifton StrengthsFinder around people’s strengths pushed our ability to do strengths based organizational consulting to another level. It made us tighten up our core delivery in a way that relied on us getting better with one instrument instead of several.
The other day I was emailing back and forth with someone interested in our services. As part of the conversation, they said something to the effect of, ‘you do something with strengths, right?’ I replied, ‘We exclusively use the Clifton StrengthsFinder to do strengths based organizational consulting.’
Speaking to potential clients and saying we ‘only use StrengthsFinder’ gives clients faith in our ability to hit the exact target we were aiming at. Namely, building strong people into strong teams, and aligning strong teams into strong cultures.
This has helped us become laser focused on what we do. By asking ourselves a variety of questions about our core business, we have continued to refine how we are able to help out clients. We know where our skill rests. We also know where we’re not as skill. Knowing this allows us to confidently refer or outsource parts that to other firms that we have a relationship with.
Striving for Improvement
When we innovate as a company, we only innovate around how we are using strengths to do what we do. Case in point, we are working on new ideas around leading and managing through and with strengths and that thinking and innovation may not have happened if we had a wider target like we had in the past.
Hear me that what we did in the past was not bad, but now it is more focused.
Looking back this looks like one of the best moves our President, Brian, has ever made for our company. It is easy to see when you look back and the company has grown, but when he made that decision there was no guarantee we would grow just because we were more focused. But, listening and focusing on what people were asking us to do has worked to our advantage.
Ask These Questions to Focus on What you Are Best At
In another setting I do organizational consulting with colleges and universities. They constantly struggle with this concept of focusing on what they do best. I truly believe that in this economy, less is more, and the more you focus on what makes you unique the better the results you will have.
Here are a few simple questions to ask yourself or your organization to evaluate what you are doing. These things will help you focus on what you do best.
- What is working that you should keep?
- What is not working that you need to change?
- What do you not have that you need to add?
- What do you have that you need to stop doing and get rid of?
Those questions have helped me, and the organizations we work with become more focused on the right things. If you want to take this to another level, you can add a strengths based layer of questions on top of these. Ask:
- Are we using the strengths and talents of our current employees in the best way?
- Does our company culture encourage employees to contribute based on their strengths?
- What roles might need to change to better leverage strengths?
By using these simple questions, you can not only help your employees become more engaged, but you can focus on what you are best at at all levels of your organization.