Let’s take a look back at our school days for a moment: Were you more likely to receive support in the subjects where you got an “A” on your report card and were happy and motivated, or in the areas where you tended to lag behind?


In most cases, tutoring was on the agenda for the poorer results, while the good performance was rarely promoted further. Energy was spent on weeding out the weaknesses, which per se is not wrong in order to achieve good grades here as well, but the question remains: What might have been if our areas of strength had been promoted more? What potential do you think we could have ignited?


The shift to strengths orientation

In psychology, the basic question is “What is WRONG with people and how can we fix the deficit?”, but Don Clifton and Martin Seligman asked themselves “What happens when we address what is RIGHT with people?” and are considered the founders of Positive Psychology. Subsequently, this evolved into the Strengths Philosophy, which posited that individuals can achieve much more by focusing on building their talents than by spending the same amount of time neutralizing their weaknesses.

We recommend the book “Flourish – A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-being” by Prof. Dr. Martin Seligman.


It is all the more important that we incorporate this insight into our everyday work, because according to scientific research, people’s emotional attachment to a company is stronger and productivity is higher when they experience strengths orientation at work. Let’s take the first step: Do I know the strengths of my colleagues and employees? Does my leader actually know what I really like to do and what I do well?


Welcome to the Strength Zone

With the Strength Zone, we enable employees to take on tasks and responsibilities that match their strengths and interests. Of course, it is never possible to do only those things that you enjoy, but the concept of the Strength Zone creates an awareness of how employees can be engaged in the best possible way.

You can use the following questions to discover for yourself (or with your employees) where you stand on the Strength Zone:

  • What kinds of tasks do I find exciting, what do I naturally gravitate toward?
  • What kind of tasks do I learn particularly quickly?
  • What kinds of tasks leave me in a flow? (I forget time and space, the activity goes by itself).
  • Which tasks do I succeed in excellently without a second thought and have I often asked myself afterwards how I managed to do it?
  • Which tasks give me a deep inner fulfillment / a feeling of happiness, whereby I am already happy to be able to complete this or a similar task?


Take these questions with you as preparation for your next performance review or share them openly with your team. On the one hand, this shows that you as a leader are genuinely interested in engaging your team members according to their strengths and in distributing the tasks properly. On the other hand, it is a good, exciting exercise for the people themselves to reflect on their own activities and perhaps to set the focus correctly again through small or larger adaptations. With strengths orientation, employees are motivated and can contribute their potential and talents even better in the future. – Of course, this also applies to you and your leader: Simply take the initiative and bring up the topic at your next One-on-One.

Graphic seen at Stärken Trainer GmbH

3-2-1-Strength-oriented Leadership

Are you ready for a future focus on strengths, to recognize talents, to promote potentials and to bring more motivation into your daily work? Perfect, because we can already promise you: it pays off! Here we have summarized the benefits of strengths-oriented leadership for you:

  • If you as a leader succeed in matching the strengths of your employees with the requirements of the job, this results in a very high level of self-motivation among employees. In the end, it’s simple: If we do what comes easily to us and gives us energy, we go to work with commitment and determination.
  • Employees who are able to develop their strengths perform much better than those who struggle with certain tasks because they either lack the necessary talent or skills.
  • Strength-oriented leadership requires much less energy and time in the long run. Because of the intrinsic motivation of the employees, the leader has to spend much less time guiding the team to better performance through steering. On the contrary, the employees’ self-responsible actions are strengthened enormously.


With this in mind: Let’s put our strengths in focus!