Every organization is as good as its employees. Your people make everyday operations run smoothly and bring results to your company. Each individual possesses a unique set of skills and strengths that critically contribute to the company goals.
Often, employers evaluate their candidates and employees based on more “tangible” criteria. For example, how well they can debug code, or what their sales track record is. These job-related skills are important, but it’s equally essential to evaluate additional strengths which are closely tied to the employees’ ability to perform well at work and bring success in the long run.
In this article, we’ll discuss the employee strengths every company should acknowledge, how to grow strong teams, and, finally, how to seamlessly turn any weaknesses into strengths.
What do we mean by employee strengths?
An employee’s strengths are the traits or set of abilities that help them easily achieve their goals. Some examples of employee strengths are communication skills, digital literacy, work ethic, problem-solving, and critical thinking. When employees demonstrate certain strengths, it’s more likely that they bring efficiency and boost performance and productivity to achieve your organization’s goals.
At the same time, when your people are aware of their strengths (and weaknesses), they’re more willing to learn from their mistakes and are open to training that will help them improve their skillset, thus, their overall performance and expertise.
Key employee strengths to look for
Let’s see which are the most essential employee strengths and why. Bear in mind that these strengths are important for every person in your team, regardless of their role, seniority level, or field.
You need dependable employees who show accountability when any issues arise. Reliable and loyal employees demonstrate ownership, and you know you can depend on them no matter what. They are punctual and consistent, meet deadlines, and provide high-quality work.
Also, coworkers can always count on them for guidance, support, or advice. Such a strength helps develop strong work relationships, ensures efficiency, and establishes trust.
Times change, tasks change, the focus can change, anything, really. So, it’s necessary to have employees who can adapt quickly and easily to any changes at work.
Flexible individuals feel less stressed due to their fast adaptability in unexpected situations. Moreover, they demonstrate a more optimistic attitude and are likely to learn and discover new procedures, techniques, skills, and approaches faster than those who are not flexible enough.
Self-motivated employees can perform exceptionally well without having managers or supervisors constantly reminding them to keep striving for excellence or boosting their morale. They’re very dedicated professionals and valuable assets for your organization as they can deliver high-quality work and perform with consistency.
Employees who have the ability and enjoy working with others or in teams benefit your business. It’s essential to have people who get along well with peers, but also who have the skills to work with others toward a common goal without jeopardizing the process.
There can’t be teamwork or success without communication. Long-term goals can be hard to achieve if there are issues in communication between employees. Employees with communication skills can be approachable, and easy to talk and work with. They promote transparency and can handle difficult situations with humor and optimism.
At the same time, people with advanced communication skills are more likely to be active listeners and care for their peers’ perspective, and never have a judgmental attitude.
6. Problem-solving and decision-making
Making the right decisions for a project, team, task, or approach with ease is an amazing employee strength your organization could benefit from. People with problem-solving and decision-making abilities have a clear understanding of circumstances and obstacles, but also benefits and positive outcomes.
Those employees can approach an issue more creatively and, having an open mind and can-do attitude, they can play a vital role in your organization’s success.
Empathy and emotional intelligence are important employee strengths for any organization. These values not only help build stronger relationships between teams but also allow individuals to recognize behaviors and non-verbal cues. By using empathy and emotional intelligence, employees can improve and mediate the dynamics both internally and externally in the workplace.
Growing strong teams: How to help employees develop their strengths
Employee strengths are not something people naturally have or don’t have. They shouldn’t be confused with personality traits.
Strengths are a set of skills that is trainable and can be improved and evolved. You might have observed that some of your employees struggle in certain areas, so with proper training and other strategies, you can help them enhance specific skills and boost their overall performance.
This is why it is essential to plan ahead your L&D strategy and start investing in improving those skills and strengths that will make all the difference in your business.
So how can you help employees become stronger?
1. Conduct evaluations and provide constructive feedback
Proper employee evaluation helps employees understand pain areas and define whether there’s room for improvement concerning certain skill sets.
But evaluation alone is not sufficient.
It’s necessary to share these findings with your employees. Schedule regular feedback sessions so that your people are aware of what they’re doing right or wrong. Don’t wait for the quarterly evaluation to provide feedback. HR can help leadership track employee performance, assess their strengths and weaknesses, and offer feedback that will help employees improve their skills.
2. Create targeted training programs
During evaluations and skills gap analyses, you may identify weaknesses. This is the time for you to take action.
Build training programs that address those exact issues. For example, you might have discovered your teams lack communication skills and teamwork. Plan out a training program through your LMS that covers the soft skills they need to brush off, and offer additional resources to help your employees reach their fullest potential.
3. Apply mentorship and coaching programs
One way to nurture employee development with successful results is by offering mentorship and coaching programs. When employees get to experience this development approach, they have the chance to view things from a different perspective and form stronger professional relationships.
And this applies to both mentors and mentees. The best way to plan effective employee training is to choose an LMS that provides you with all the tools you need for coaching, like live videoconferencing apps and discussion forums.
4. Recognize achievements
Acknowledging and rewarding employees is very important to boost employee morale. Celebrating achievements and accomplishments makes employees feel satisfied, proud, and confident. As a result, they are more likely to continue being productive and high-performing.
Also, when employees use their strengths at work, you should acknowledge and reward them for that. This way, you motivate them to keep using those strengths, while, at the same time, they become role models for others.
Building a culture of turning weaknesses into strengths
When employees make use of their strengths on the job, the entire organization benefits. Your teams become more agile, more creative, and more competitive. And this translates into better employee engagement, motivation, retention, and as a result, better ROI.
Therefore, your employees should be able to identify weaknesses—not only on a personal level but on a group level, too—and assist in making these weaknesses into strengths that will take your business forward.
Building and nurturing a culture of valuing employee strengths and overcoming weaknesses is an amazing way to start the development of an amazing workplace.