Week 31 – How to Identify the Strengths That Are Already Within

Performance reviews can evoke strong and unexpected emotional reactions. And it is natural to react defensively, especially when employees hear that their performance is not up to par and this is the first time they hear about the issue. For months they have been performing under the assumption that they were doing the right things and now they are being told otherwise. When emotions flare, you can't diffuse emotions with more emotions. These delicate situations required a process that creates a more productive conversations and satisfactory outcome. The process equalizes the balance of power between employees and leaders.

  • Maintain respect at all times.
  • Focus on the facts.
  • Give your employee an equal opportunity to give their perspective.
  • Give careful consideration to both perspectives.
  • Jointly identify options to resolve the issue.
  • Jointly agree on a plan of action.
  • Follow up with feedback as promised.

It's not realistic to expect a quick resolution to an important performance issue after a single and quick discussion with an employee. If the issue is important enough to discuss, it deserves the effort required to find a win-win resolution. The employee has to understand what needs to change and what actions need to be taken. The employee also needs to feel he or she can count on your leadership support to resolve the issue. A two-way process goes a long way in ensuring that the issue is resolved and a stronger relationship emerges.

Dianne is a certified coach who is passionate about helping individuals and business leaders thrive as they successfully manage the dynamics of continual transitions.  She is the author of a new book: If There Are No Limits… A guide to living with passion, purpose and possibilities. For more information visit her website at
Ask anyone to tell you about their 3 biggest strengths and they will struggle. Why is that? Probably because we aren’t necessarily comfortable thinking of ourselves in that way.  We may have been told that talking about our strengths is boasting and, healing well, tadalafil good boys and girls don’t boast. It’s impolite. But we are often called on the strengths we have during the trials of life and to achieve success.  And it is through those trials and successes that we continue to build a foundation of strength that is there to call upon at a future time. If I asked you to sit with a blank piece of paper and create a long list of strengths, you might find it daunting. Instead, start building your portfolio of strengths by identifying 2-3 strengths in each of the following 4 areas. As more come to mind, keep adding to your list.

  1. Describe your strengths using adjectives. “I am humorous, kind, open, compassionate, generous, patient and strong.”
  2. Use descriptors of what you do. “I am a leader, teacher, care giver.”
  3. Describe your personality traits. “I am someone who persuades others, who is direct and who is flexible.”
  4. Think of how friends or family members have described you in the past or what co-workers and superiors have said about your work to get more clues about your strengths.  Or, ask them to describe your strengths.

Another great way is to think about your strengths is in terms of the talents, abilities, skills and knowledge you’ve gained over your lifetime. Perhaps you have natural talents where you hear a new piece of music once and play it on an instrument with little to no practice. You may have developed the ability to design and create wonderful gardens. You have superior writing or teaching skills. You may be very knowledgeable about world geography, classic literature or cultural histories and traditions.

When you put all of these things together, you’ll amaze yourself at all of the strengths you have built over your lifetime. Don’t worry about boasting. This is an exercise in getting to know yourself well, so that you can draw on those amazing strengths as you work towards becoming all that you are capable of becoming. Next week, we’ll look at some strategies to draw those strengths out when you need to.


Dianne is a certified coach who helps individuals thrive as they successfully manage the dynamics of incessant demands; and the author of a new book: If There Are No Limits… A guide to living with passion, purpose and possibilities. For more information, visit the book page on this website. 

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Dianne Gaudet is a certified Coach who is passionate about helping her clients manage the dynamics of continual life transitions as they reach new heights of personal and professional success. Helping Boomers create rich and inspired lifestyle plans for the retirement life they want is one of her greatest joys. Dianne is the author of a new book, If There Are No Limits... A guide to living with passion, purpose and possibilities. She is also a motivational speaker, teacher and world traveller.