249: Use a Strengths-Based Approach to Develop Your Team Members with Scott Whiteford

Do you know your team members’ unique talents? Every member of a workplace possesses a unique set of talents and skills that can be valuable to a team. By utilizing these diverse abilities, teams can become more efficient, innovative, and successful. Even more, when team members feel valued for their contributions, it fosters a positive and collaborative work environment.

Today’s guest is Scott Whiteford. As Director of Leadership Analytics, Scott is a leading authority on The Science of Talent and has coached over 1,700 leaders on how to develop talent. His primary analytical focus is on utilizing Talent Plus’ Executive Interview to help companies select and coach leaders and their teams based on their strengths. He thoughtfully uses talent solutions such as the Team Retreat, TeamView, Leadership 360s, Collaborative Coaching, and Progression & Succession Planning to develop leaders and build effective teams through a strengths-management approach.

Scott and I talk about taking a strengths-based approach to management and talent development. We discuss what it means to focus on talents, how to figure out what those strengths are, how to lean into the strengths of your team members and how to do so in ways that feel fair.

Members of the Modern Manager community get a free talent assessment and customized report. Take it yourself or give it to your team members as a tool to guide professional development. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community.

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Read the related blog article: Focus On Developing Your Team Members’ Strengths (Instead of Their Weaknesses!)


Twitter: https://twitter.com/TalentPlusInc

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/TalentPlusInc/

Scott LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/scottwhiteford/

Talent Plus LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/talent-plus-inc/

Timestamps & Topics:

  • 0:00 Introductions
  • 1:54 What is strengths-based management? (Mercedes Benz analogy)
  • 5:46 How do leaders recognize what people’s strengths are?
  • 7:17 Examples of strengths Scott has encountered, and how he helped develop them
  • 10:12 How to have conversations with team members about shaping their job to better suit their strengths
  • 14:01 What if someone wants to do a particular job, but you don’t think it fits their strengths?
  • 17:26 Examples of a strengths-based assessment at work
  • 19:00 What to do if you realize you don’t have particular talents that are needed (compensatory strategies)
  • 23:04 How do we shift jobs based on strengths while staying fair and equitable?
  • 26:36 About a great manager that Scott worked for
  • 28:00 Keep up with Scott
  • [Extended episode only] 29:00 Addressing strengths as an element of DEI
  • [Extended episode only] 31:20 Shifting roles on a full-scale vs. team-wide level
  • [Extended episode only] 35:00 Tips on reorienting our thinking to be strengths-based

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