Tom Rath

Topics: Leadership, Management, The A-Team Pages: 5 (1678 words) Published: April 25, 2013
The purpose of this paper is to summarize and analyze the # 1 Wall Street Journal Best Seller: “Strengths Based Leadership” by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie. People have struggle finding and applying their own strengths because many people do not differentiate their natural talents from their hobbies or interest brings results of statistics conducted over 25 years of Gallup studies evaluating leaders performance and productivity. The consulting company identified twelve core elements that measure the engagement of a local work team. Each core element is divided in five key themes which represent the main reasons for people to follow a good leader. Thesis: people should maximize their strengths and not focus on their weaknesses. Investing in your strengths

Why should someone invest in their strengths?
According to the authors, effective leaders are aware of their strengths and succeed because their decisions and actions are based on their talents and beliefs. Furthermore, effective leaders focus on investing time in improving their strengths and are confident of their weaknesses and limitations. On the other hand, when people focus on their weaknesses, they lose confidence. For example, Tom Rath and Barry Conchie state “If you spend your life trying to be good at everything, you will never be great at anything” (7). Additionally, the father of strengths psychology, Dr. Donald O. Clifton asserts that: “A leader needs to know his strengths as a carpenter knows his tools, or as a physician know the instruments at her disposal. What great leaders have in common is that each truly knows his or her strengths- and can call on the right strength at the right time … “(13). Maximizing your team

Why is important is it important to maximize your team?
Tom Rath and Barry Conchie emphasize that maximizing your team by recruiting individuals with different strengths is crucial to achieve difficult goals. The authors recognize four domains of leadership strengths in a successful team: executing, influencing, relationship building, and strategic thinking. The authors interviews effective leaders who illustrate the domains of leadership strengths. In executing strengths, Wendy Kopp, Founder and CEO Teach for America , whose executing strength helped her reduce education inequity in the U.S. . Due to the adversities that involved her ambitious project, Kopp could finally create a national teacher corps that provides education to children from underprivileged areas. Kopp’s determination and ability to execute helped her spend life time to recruit the best teachers and fundraisers. For instance, she made sure that the teachers hired were even better than the top teachers from other schools. In order to define an effective leader with influencing strengths, the author interviews Simon Cooper, President The Ritz- Carlton. Simon Cooper had to put in practice his influencing strengths to achieve a difficult challenge. Taking one of the world’s best brands to a higher position of recognition was more than a challenge for Cooper. By closely studying the customers’ loyalty with a brand, he concluded that emotional factors were significant attachments to improve brand recognition. In fact, he knew how to fully exploit his strengths by leading his team to build strong relationships with customers. Nowadays, “The Ritz- Carlton company” is recognized as the fastest growing business in its market. Another domain of leadership strength is relationship building. Mervyn Davies, Chairman Standard Chartered Bank, stated that” his mission was to build and organization that had a heart and a soul” (50). In order to achieve his goal, Davies had to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of his team. For instance, he states that “ the most important aspect of leading is simply knowing oneself … you must know yourself, know the people around you, and them get on it with it” (54). Moreover, Davies recognizes that part of his strategy was to...
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