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About the Author

British motivational speaker, trainer, and author Marcus Buckingham graduated from Cambridge University with a Master's Degree in Social and Political Science in 1987. He is internationally known as an authority on employee productivity and is a member of the Secretary of State's Advisory Committee show more on Leadership and Management. Buckingham worked as a senior researcher at The Gallup Organization for 17 years and founded TMBC in 2007 in order to create strengths-based management training solutions for organizations. He has appeared on television shows including The Oprah Winfrey Show, Larry King Live, The Today Show, Good Morning America, and The View. Buckingham has been profiled in the following publications: The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Fortune, Fast Company, and Harvard Business Review. He has written or co-written numerous bestselling books, such as First, Break All the Rules; Now, Discover Your Strengths; The One Thing You Need to Know; and Go Put Your Strengths to Work. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

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Birthdate
1966
Gender
male
Nationality
UK
Places of residence
Los Angeles, California, USA
Education
University of Cambridge
Occupations
consultant
Organizations
The Gallup Organization

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Reviews

This book neatly takes the opposing view for everything we should question about the conventional wisdom on engagement at work. The authors' points are backed by real-world examples and plenty of empirical evidence. For the benefit of the key leadership points, I've added this book to my top shelf of leadership guides.
 
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jpsnow | 1 other review | Mar 23, 2023 |
Kind of a typical airport business book, but actually quite a good take.
 
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dualmon | 1 other review | Jan 4, 2023 |
I read this books as part of a reading group at work. It is a mediocre book with highly valuable information if you are willing to dig through the business speak and find it. As such, reading it in a group worked well. At our meetings, we were able to weed out the valuable information.

The theme of this book is that people do best when they focus on their strengths. This flies in the face of much popular wisdom which says that you should work to improve in your weakest areas. Instead, the authors of this book are of the opinion that focusing on your weaknesses will, at best, bring you up to mediocre. Focusing on those areas where you have natural talent and passion will bring success. They say that successful teams are balanced, but successful individuals invest in developing their unique talents.

This book contains a six step system for discovering and developing your strengths. Buckingham excels at the art of business babble, which makes this book something of a chore to read. However, the system itself is useful. At a high level, the steps in this system are:

1. Attitude realignment: Stop believing the myth that you should work on improving your weaknesses. (I wouldn't really call this a step, but whatever.)

2. Strength discovery: Spend a week noting which activities you love and loathe and turn those into strengths statements. A strength is a specific activity that makes you feel strong. For example, "I evaluate an already defined set of options against a set of well defined criteria" is a strength. "I make decisions" is not. The first one defines specific preconditions that must be met before the strength can apply: both the options and the criteria must be predefined.

3. Use your strengths: Find more way to apply these strengths in your job.

4. Stop your weaknesses: Find ways to spend less time on the activities you loathe.

5. Talk about it: Talk to your manager about how you can use your strengths to improve the team. Then, once you have demonstrated that you're not just trying to get out of work, talk to your manager about those things which drain you and figure out how to spend less time on them or change them to be more in line with your strengths.

6. Build strong habits: Set up a structure which will encourage you to build up your strengths every week. Also, reevaluate your strengths periodically; they will change as your role and interests change.

Our reading group focused mostly on the second step: strength discovery. I found this to be one of the most useful parts of the whole reading group. Just by spending a week being conscious of what I do and do not like, I gained a lot of insight into my work day. The exercise of turning those very specific statements into strengths statements that were general enough to be applicable from week to week without being so general as to be meaningless helped me to figure out why I enjoyed the activities that I enjoyed.

That said, I have been having a hard time focusing on really putting my strengths into practice. I am pretty good at noticing when I am using one of my strengths, but it takes time to figure out how I can spend more time using my strengths. I have not yet taken the time to sit down and do this.

Like any program, the real value is proportional to the amount of time you are willing to put into it. The answers the books give you are just a start. I found Go Put Your Strengths to Work to be valuable starting points in figuring out how I could really apply my strengths to my job.
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eri_kars | 4 other reviews | Jul 10, 2022 |
Based on a Gallup study of over two million people who have excelled in their careers, this text uses a program to help readers discover their distinct talents and strengths.
 
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OLibrary | 21 other reviews | Mar 21, 2022 |

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Works
27
Also by
2
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7,911
Popularity
#3,066
Rating
3.8
Reviews
55
ISBNs
149
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13
Favorited
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