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Summer Edition
Volume 100, Number 1

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Go Put Your Strengths to Work

Sail into summer reading (continued)

A secret to business success

Rather than focusing on improving employees’ weaknesses, managers should consider strategies to maximize their strengths

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Many business leaders have claimed “our employees are our greatest asset.” Over time, the statement has evolved into “the right employees are our greatest asset.” In his latest book, Go Put Your Strengths to Work: 6 Powerful Steps to Achieve Outstanding Performance, Marcus Buckingham suggests that our employees’ strengths are our greatest asset. Buckingham was a keynote speaker at a conference I attended a few months ago, and he caught my attention when he expressed the idea of emphasizing employees’ strengths and managing around their weaknesses.

Go Put Your Strengths to Work discusses how many societies often place an emphasis on fixing professional weaknesses as a way to achieve superior performance. One of the myths he causes readers to contemplate is that individuals will grow the most in their areas of greatest weakness. Examples of this myth in our lives may include questions such as:

When we were growing up, did our parents and teachers focus mainly on our highest grade or our lowest grade? 

How much time do organizations spend on finding out why employees stay with the organization as opposed to why employees leave? 

When discussing your performance at work, how much time do you and your manager spend talking about your outstanding achievements versus your areas for improvement?

One of the most intriguing things about this book is the practical application of Buckingham’s theories. He offers readers the opportunity to identify their own strengths and weaknesses, and suggests that the more those strengths are exercised, the more effective a team will be in achieving superior performance.


Brian Mbuu

—Brian Mbuu ’99 works at NHS Human Services as a human resource project director. In his current role, Brian is working on implementing a new software system that will automate employee time and attendance information. This project provides management with real-time information to assist in controlling labor costs.

At Messiah College, Brian earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration with a minor in human resource management. He enjoys reading late at night to get himself focused for the next day.

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