If there is one thing I've learned about people over the years of being a CEO and employing a staff, it's that every single person has a talent and an area in which they shine. What I've also learned is that not everyone recognizes their own strengths. I've often interviewed someone for a position, and when I ask if they enjoy the position, they wholeheartedly answer, "yes!" I've been gifted with being able to recognize the strengths in others and really encourage and develop positions and opportunities around their strengths. I know that when I focus my time and attention on what it is that I'm good at, I naturally feel passionate, engaged, and empowered. I soar in those spaces and feel like it's no longer work but a passion.
In this industry, we find all too often that people are in it because they fell into it. As a community manager, we are expected to wear many many hats and do them all well. But the truth is, not everything that we are required to do is what we are passionate about doing. For example, there is a side of attending Board meetings and being a leader. There is also a side of conducting site inspections and being analytical and thorough. There's a side of helping homeowners, which requires extroversion, empathy and solutions. Let's not leave out the administrative side of processing bills or putting together letters, which is a dream for introverts who work quietly and independently.
What I think we miss all too often is really getting to know our employees and their strengths and weaknesses. Starting with recognizing whether an individual is an introvert or an extrovert is a good place. That allows us to identify whether someone would be better behind a desk and at a computer, or whether they must be around colleagues and clients all day. Each one will thrive in the right setting, but each one would be miserable in the wrong setting.
Whether you are thinking about yourself and your own passions or are thinking about your employees, take a moment to reflect on this. Oftentimes, people are placed in the wrong seat on the bus and feel defeated or less than. Rather than forcing someone into a position that is best not suited for them, let's work on really understanding who a person is at their core and build on what they do best. It's in that space that we have the opportunity to unlock passion and joy in the workplace and really have an exceptional experience as an employer and for the employee as well.