Rely on Inner Confidence

March 1st, 2015 § 8 comments § permalink

“He who is plenteously provided for from within, needs but little from without.” —Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Do you trust yourself?

I believe confidence is the single most important ingredient to anyone’s success. Without at least a modest measure of confidence in your talents and skills you’ll find it difficult to take the action necessary to achieve your goals in life. Rather than simply sitting back and depending on other people to provide you direction, you need to believe in yourself and chart your own path.

One of the worst things you can to do is to seek personal validation from those around you. We all need to feel like we’re supported and it feels good to be praised by our managers, peers, friends and families. However, we won’t always receive the praise we seek. If you stake your sense of worth and accomplishment on the praise of others, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. You may also create a self-fulfilling prophecy in which you continue to place more emphasis on your desire to be praised only to be repeatedly disappointed.

Your best source of confidence comes from within. Start by becoming crystal clear about your personal talents and strengths. Everyone has talent and you’re not an exception. The problem is that you likely take your talents for granted and don’t think they’re very important. This simply isn’t true. Step back and think about the tasks, behaviors, and ways of thinking that come very naturally to you. These are indications of areas of talent for you. Also take stock of all the knowledge and skills you have acquired over your lifetime. You’ll be amazed at how much you truly know.

Next, identify all of your accomplishments. Think about all the different jobs you’ve had and identify the projects you worked on, the problems you helped solve, or the customers you helped. However, don’t limit yourself to professional accomplishments. Think about the sports teams or clubs you were on in school as well as any community groups you have participated in. Every one of these experiences is a ripe source of accomplishments, talents, knowledge, and skill.

Finally, once you’ve identified all of your personal talents, knowledge, skill, and accomplishments it’s important to capture it all on paper. This isn’t the time to be modest! Capture in as much detail as you can, what you did, how it made a difference, and what talents you brought to the table. Also, think about the feedback you’ve been given from others. What praise have you received? What talent did others acknowledge you for? Capture all of this in the same document.

Whenever you’re feeling a little discouraged, open this document and review all that you’ve accomplished in your life. Relive the moments in which you felt successful and remind yourself that you have more than enough ability to persevere through whatever challenge you are facing. Make it a practice to revisit this document once a month to add any new accomplishments or feedback you have received.

If you want to be successful in life, then you have to be prepared to follow the path that is right for you. No one can tell you what is right for you, so the decision is completely yours. You have to believe in yourself. Achieving success isn’t easy and you are bound to stumble along the way but when you possess a reservoir of inner confidence you’ll always be able to pick yourself up and get back on the path.

Here is this week’s Authentic Excellence Action Step:

Create your personal “Inner Confidence” document.

Make it an excellent week!

J. Matthew Becker, M.Ed., PCC

Leaders Maximize the Talent of their Teams

February 8th, 2015 § 0 comments § permalink

“A successful person finds the right place for himself. But a successful leader finds the right place for others.” -John Maxwell

How are you helping your employees maximize their talent?

As a leader, it’s your responsibility to cultivate the talent of your team. You need to understand and accept that each member of your team is a unique individual and it’s your job to capitalize on the talents and strengths they bring to the table.

You must first be able to recognize the talents of your various team members. Most people aren’t very good at recognizing their talents. Because these aspects of ourselves come so naturally, we take them for granted and assume they aren’t that important.

As a leader you need to be on the look out for evidence of talent and share your observations with your team members to help them appreciate the impact they make. Additionally, spend time coaching them to explore what tasks they enjoy as well as which ones come very naturally and effortlessly to them. Help your team identify how they feel while doing these tasks and why they enjoy them.

Once you’ve helped your employees begin to recognize their talents search for opportunities for them to develop their talents. You might send them to a conference or seminar where they can acquire knowledge or develop skills that will help them apply their talents. Or you could provide them with new assignments to give them an opportunity to apply their talents in new ways.

Finally, you need to take a few steps back and consider how to leverage all of the talents on your team. This could possibly entail rearranging the way work is completed in order to allow different individuals on your team to play to their strengths. As you become more aware of the talents on your team, you might even realize there is a need for some new roles. Your team might just have the talents necessary to address a unique need for your organization and/or customers.

Finally, you could come to the conclusion that the best opportunity for one of your team members to maximize their talents is to move on to another position either within or outside your organization. Good leaders realize that what is best for this individual is best for the organization. When they actively support an individual making the move that is right for them, these leaders demonstrate that they put their team first and create an environment of trust.

It’s the responsibility of a leader to nurture the talent of their team. The best leaders are adept at recognizing, developing, and leveraging talent in a way that achieves results and creates a foundation of trust.

Here is this week’s Authentic Excellence Action Step:

Identify one talent in each of your team members.

Make it an excellent week.

J. Matthew Becker, M.Ed., PCC