is a book by authors Thuy Sindell and Milo Sindell.
The book starts with the premise that to survive in the modern world we need to be agile and adaptive. This book and the associated website set out to provide tools to help readers become more agile.
Structured in three parts, the book sets the reader out on a journey of discovery of our existing strengths and the opportunity we have for personal growth.
Part 1 – What are Hidden Strengths?
In part 1 of the book the authors uncover what “hidden strengths” are. They look at the risks of focusing on weaknesses, the dangers of over relying on strengths and the rewards available to those that seek to focus on their hidden strengths.
The four principles of hidden strengths are outlined. In summary these are:
- Leverage your traits & develop your skills
- The middle is the source of development
- Practice, Practice, practice
- Always be working on your hidden strengths
Part 2 – Finding your Hidden Strengths
In part 2 of the book the authors present us with the opportunity for the reader to identify their own natural strengths and weaknesses and our hidden strengths. To do this we are introduced to the twenty eight skills. This is neatly done not in the book, but on a website where each reader has the opportunity of going to a website to get their own personal profile… for free!
When complete we return to the book to understand the results and our “hidden strengths” report.
Part 3 – Hidden Strengths into action
In the third and final part of the book, this data is used to help the reader get our hidden strengths working for us. We are guided through building a personal development plan.
Step 1 – Find your motivation
Step 2 – Identify your goals
Step 3 – Choose your hidden strengths to develop
Step 4 – Turn your hidden strengths into learned strengths
Step 5 – Evaluate your progress
The appendix shows how the skills are broken down and why they matter. They cover:
- Leading self
- Leading others
- Leading the organization
- Leading implementation
Under each is a series of seven skills.
Leading self – Emotional control, flexibility, integrity, resilience, self confidence, executive presence, work life balance
Leading others – Assertiveness, conflict resolution, influencing others, listening, partnering and relationship building, teamwork and collaboration, verbal communication
Leading the organization – Creativity & innovation, Entrepreneurship, external awareness, Inspirational vision, organizational awareness, service motivation, strategic thinking
Leading implementation – coaching & mentoring, customer focus, delegation, effectiveness, monitoring performance, planning & organizing, thoroughness
There are many books out there that provide a profile or needs analysis tool. This is one of the first with a comprehensive online tools for the reader to use included with the book.
For me I would have preferred a larger print, and more visuals in the publication.
At first glance the 80 page book is a little on the thin side. Considering that the profile is free (online providers charge more then the book price just for the profile), this is a valuable and useful publication.
If you are a leader or a professional that wants to improve yourself, this book has all you need for a useful program of self improvement. Not a quick fix, but a needs led plan and set of resources.
Having worked in the field of high performer coaching and corporate training and development for some time, I am often bewildered by the advice given to many. This typically includes advising people to focus and build their strengths, or to round the circle buy neutralising weaknesses.
This books take s practical approach of doing neither, but accepting both. By encouraging individuals to work on hidden strengths, it is empowering the reader to be successful and not supporting the notion “you can be perfect”. Work on those skills that are not weaknesses, nor are they strengths – but could be.
This could mark a change in the advice many in the field of people development and coaching give – about time!!!
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