It’s a classic scenario. Young “Susie” is great at English, but struggles with math. What do we typically do? We get a tutor or extra help to improve her math skills.
Everyone should have a minimum level of proficiency in basic math skills, but instead of forcing Susie to “get” math, I think we should pour fuel on her passion for English, build on her strengths and simply accept she’ll need help with math.
The same can be said for business. Stop focusing on your weaknesses, recognize what you’re great at and do more of it. Hmmm, sounds a lot like the serenity prayer.
I often think about a parenting class we attended shortly after our first son was born, more than 20 years ago. The teacher began by asking all parents of “average” children to raise their hands.
Obviously, not a single hand went up in the air.
We all think our kids (insert our job, our business, our lives) are “above average.” He went on to suggest average isn’t bad, it’s just the middle of the pack. These days, I often say I aspire to average, particularly when receiving reports on my health!
The teacher continued to explain that if your kid loves making music … or being entrepreneurial … or is fascinated by history, well, give them more of that. Ignite those embers!
The reality is that all of us are truly “average” at most things, but we’re all “above average” on some things, just as we are “below average” at others.
A simpler approach to growing your business
We used to start with a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis. Think differently – focus on the S and skim over the rest. Our foundation positioning philosophy is Think Excellence, Not Difference, which is diametrically opposed to traditional marketing thinking that espouses differentiation and niches. So you can see, I’m used to thinking differently.
My goal for my business is focus on what we do great, and work toward making ourselves even greater. For example, our clients appreciate our holistic integration of all marketing and communications touch points – so, let’s do more of that!
We know our strengths and we build on them. It’s the most effective strategy to grow a business, just as it’s the best approach to helping your children succeed.
I never could hit a curve ball. I stopped playing baseball in seventh grade.
My stick figures barely represent people. I try not to draw in public.
But we’re pretty darn good at helping our clients clarify their messages, connect with the people who matter most, and change opinions and behaviors.
Do what you do best, and you’ll not only be more successful, you’ll have more fun along the way.
Onward and upward.Tagged Eric Morgenstern, Executive Insights, Morningstar Communications, strengths