296: The Power of Strengths (and Weaknesses) | Tanya Dalton Skip to the content
Intentional Advantage Podcast with Tanya Dalton and John Dalton the power of Knowing your Strengths and knowing your weaknesses
April 2, 2024   |   Episode #:

296: The Power of Strengths (and Weaknesses)

In This Episode:

What if embracing your weaknesses actually amplifies your strengths? In today’s episode we reveal the transformative power of embracing your true strengths—even those you might consider weaknesses. We dive into the shadow side of strengths as well the surprising positive impact of knowing your weaknesses. We discuss how this awareness can improve communication, strengthen relationships, and even assist in overcoming perfectionism, ultimately leading to a more joyful and intentional life. We talk about how strengths influence teamwork, collaboration, and parenthood. Tune in to unlock the strategic advantage of knowing yourself and others better while setting you up with a leadership approach that’s tailored to you.

Show Transcript:

Watch the Podcast

The Big Idea

Knowing your strengths is great, but knowing your weaknesses is even more powerful. 

Questions I Answer

  • What is the best way to leverage your strengths at work?
  • How can I figure out my personal strengths and weaknesses?
  • How do strengths and weaknesses impact parenting styles?
  • What does focusing on your strengths do to increase productivity?
  • How can I communicate better with my team?

Topics Covered

  • Leveraging strengths
  • Leadership styles
  • Communication styles
  • Employee-employer fit
  • Strengths-based productivity
  • Perfectionism in the workplace
  • Clifton Strengths Test
  • Parenting with strengths and weaknesses

Key Moments in the Show

[01:42] Why Do I Need to Know My Weaknesses?
[03:59] Is Quietness a Strength or Weakness?
[07:16] Why We Need to Understand Our Strengths
[11:55] Strengths Help Deepen Connections
[19:21] Strengths in Marriage and Parenting
[23:42] Strengths With Your Team at Work
[29:20] Communication Strengths and Weaknesses
[31:45] Do You Have a Leadership Guide?
[35:53] Finding Your Superpowers

Resources and Links

Show Transcript

Tanya Dalton: Hello. Hello everyone. And welcome to the Intentional Advantage Podcast. I’m your host, Tanya Dalton. This is episode 296 of the Intentional Advantage Podcast. We had such a fantastic conversation in our last episode with Rachael Jayne Groover, I got so many emails from so many of you talking about that whole idea of the inner dialogue and the way that we look at our ego.
And it really got me thinking about the episode that we’re doing today, which we’re going to be talking about your strengths. And we’re going to be talking about your weaknesses. You can’t talk about one without talking about the other. So in today’s episode, we’re going to talk about the power of knowing your strengths and the power of knowing your weaknesses.
We’re going to talk about how that helps with communication. It strengthens relationships and how it even helps you let go of perfectionism. And we’ll probably talk about your superpowers if we have a chance. So let’s get started with today’s show. Does your life spark joy? I’m not asking if your life is good or if life feels okay. Does it spark joy? When was the last time you slipped into bed at night and thought, today felt amazing? Because if it’s been more than two or three days, that’s too long. I’m Tanya Dalton, a best selling author, motivational speaker, seven figure entrepreneur, and oh yeah, wife and mom.
So I get it. I understand the stress of daily life. As a productivity expert, I’m here to help you choose the extraordinary life. This season, we will be exploring how we can create more joy and intention into every single day. And it doesn’t have to be so hard. This is The Intentional Advantage.
[01:42] Why Do I Need to Know My Weaknesses?
John Dalton: I knew I wanted to do a show about your strengths because I think in this season where we’re talking about, does your life spark joy, It’s so important to think about what you do well, but I think it’s also really important to talk about what you don’t do as well, even talking about your weaknesses. the thing is,it’s so much easier to see our weaknesses.
Let’s say that I gave you an activity right now to take a sheet of paper, draw a line down the middle of that sheet of paper on one side, on the left side, you’re going to write down your strengths. I give you, let’s say two or three minutes, write down your strengths. Then we say, okay, two to three minutes to write down your weaknesses on the other side of the paper. Let me ask you a question, which side of the paper you think is going to fill up faster? The weaknesses side, because we’re so quick to pay attention to what we don’t do well, we beat ourselves up for it. And the truth is,
It’s really important to know your strengths AND your weaknesses.
Because once you understand that, it gives you so much understanding of the lens you use to view the world. It’s like getting the key to the lock. Because your lens that you see the world is based off your talents. And you think, well, Why doesn’t everybody else do it this way? Or what’s wrong with those people?
Or why don’t I do things the way that these people do? Because maybe it’s a weakness, right? It can’t be that hard. These people are doing these things. But once we understand who we are, we start to really get a grasp of our operating system. It’s how do I work best? How do I operate best? Once we get that understanding, it’s so much easier to find joy, to find happiness, and yes, actually, to be more productive.
Which, in the way that I talk about productivity, is directly connected to our happiness. Right? Because we talk about productivity isn’t about doing more, it’s doing what’s most important. So if you’re doing what’s most important, you’re happier. So if you’re more productive, that’s going to be a game changer.
Tanya Dalton: there are four really big things that happen when you understand your strengths and your weaknesses. So let’s go ahead and dive into those now. By the way, I do have John on the show. He’s been very quiet.
[03:59] Is Quietness a Strength or Weakness?
Tanya Dalton: Quietness, calmness, one of John’s strengths.
John Dalton: Yes, we’ll learn more about why that is when we talk about strengths and weaknesses because that is one of mine on both sides, right? Being a good listener and then not saying enough Good But again, it’s all about understanding all that stuff, and I’m excited to talk about it.
Tanya Dalton: okay, but John, I think what’s interesting, before we dive into these four things that we talked about, what I wanted to talk about, is for you, that quietness, that introspection is a strength, but I think you see it as a weakness.
Do you think that’s true?
John Dalton: Yeah, I think that’s true.
Tanya Dalton: I think a lot people who are quieter, who are maybe more introverted, they feel like that is something wrong with them. Like, oh, I wish I could be an extrovert. When in fact, that quietness really serves you very well. I don’t think there is anyone that I know of who is a better listener than you.
Except maybe your son, our son, who is just as quiet as you. And I think it’s because you’re not focusing on what am I going to say next? So when you speak, and this is why I tell you all the time, when John speaks, everybody stops and listens. Everybody else is just filling the air. It’s like a lot of noise pollution.
I myself a little guilty of that But when John speaks everyone stops and listens because they know it’s gonna be something powerful or it’s gonna be something really funny Because he’s very funny But I think that’s the thing is it’s sometimes the things that we think of as our weaknesses are maybe really our strengths Would you agree with that?
John Dalton: Absolutely. and part of me being quiet and introspective is, it’s part of who I am, you know, I’m a very strategic analytical person and that’s how my brain works. I, I listen to things and I take things in and I’m very observant. but I also have to be aware that sometimes that comes across as being, you know, Not interested or being aloof, you know, and I know we’ll dive a lot more into that as we talk
Tanya Dalton: Definitely. I will tell you John knows this my kids know this the first time I met John I thought he was a jerk and that’s maybe putting mildly, which is funny because we’ve now been married for almost 24 years. And, but the first time I did meet him because he was more quiet, I thought, I mean, there’s a lot of other.
Extenuating circumstances that. There was some alcohol involved, I believe, I thought he was a jerk because, and sometimes people will think that John is aloof or he’s,judging them because he’s not talking. So becoming aware of that weakness has also helped you like making sure that you don’t have a little RBF, little resting bitch face, that definitely helps.
So people don’t feel like you’re judging.
John Dalton: Mm hmm. No, it definitely does and that’s a funny story about how we met and you mentioned the alcohol part of it because The funny, the funnier part of it for me is I don’t even remember it, especially the way that you do.
Tanya Dalton: That is true.
John Dalton: So sometimes I can kind of a dick, but yeah, anyway, it’s all part of our That’s all fine. It’s
Tanya Dalton: remember the first time we met. So that is a story for another day. That one of our strengths. But let’s, let’s do, let’s talk about the strengths because the first thing that I wanted to say, cause I told you guys there was gonna be four.
It is really
[07:16] Why We Need to Understand Our Strengths
Tanya Dalton: Understanding what activities and what tasks energize you, what gets you excited, what gets you fired up and the opposite end of the spectrum, what activities and what tasks drain you.
understanding what your strengths are and what your weaknesses are really is the key to understanding.
How you operate, like we talked earlier with the operating system. So your strengths are the things that you lead with. What are the things that you go to naturally? Like it just feels easy, it feels simple. It’s like, oh yeah, that’s a no brainer. I can totally do that. Those are your strengths, right? Your weaknesses are clearly the opposite.
Where do you not go naturally? So for example, for John, talking in front of a big group is not somewhere that he goes naturally. I will naturally speak up in a large group because that’s one of my strengths. Although John, you’ve really been pushing against your weaknesses and you’ve been doing a lot of speaking on stages.
It’s funny, he’s been quite a bit of speaking on stages, but knowing that that’s something that’s harder for him, he takes more time and more prep and doing all these things to get himself geared up.
John Dalton: Yeah, for me, it’s all about feeling confident in the material and the delivery and then it’s totally fine. Yeah, so again, it’s it’s understanding all of that and I think one of everyone’s strengths should be understanding their weaknesses because that’s I think one of one of your greatest strengths if you understand those weaknesses and how to work with them or fight against them.
However, you want to look at it is super important
Tanya Dalton: Ooh, What you said was really good there. I like that how everyone should have that as their strength. You’ve heard me say before, knowing what you don’t want is more important than knowing what you do, right?
Because you can push against it. We talk about that a lot in my book and on purpose, but it’s the same thing here.
Knowing what you’re good at is great.
Knowing what you’re not good at, might even be more powerful.
Because then you know if you need someone to fill that gap for you,or understanding, hey, I need a system so that this weakness doesn’t play against me.
I talked about that a lot in the Joy of Missing Out. I have a whole chapter on systems in that book.
And I talked about the fact that I have a whole system with, like, everything. Everything, because it makes life so much easier. But even things like towels. I know, without a doubt, no question, I know that I am not going to hang up a towel on a towel bar.
I’m not going to fold it after I take a shower and put it up nice and neatly. That’s just not who I am. So instead of saying, gosh, I’m such a mess or I’m a slob or I’m the worst, cause I leave towels on the floor. I was like, okay, clearly a weakness. I mean, towel folding, maybe a weakness, but clearly something that I don’t go to naturally.
So how can I make this work for me? We have hooks in every bathroom. I do not own a towel bar in my house because I know I will not fold up the towel and put it up nice and neatly. I use hooks and you know what? My towels don’t go on the floor. They go on the hooks. And I do that very naturally because it doesn’t require the extra.
effort of folding and doing those things. So really being clear about what you do really well, but also what you don’t do really well, allows you to fill those gaps so that you can work better. In fact,
Focusing on strengths during performance reviews has shown to increase productivity up to 34%.
That’s huge, right?
John Dalton: is Yeah. Mm
Tanya Dalton: Yeah, I have a whole system that when I’m doing reviews, we lean into that. So we understand strengths and we understand your weaknesses. And I do this for everybody on my team that allows me as a manager, as a leader, as a CEO, to get my employees, get my team all working at the best of their abilities.
And doing things they’re naturally good at. Which means, guess what, they’re happier. And if there’s something they’re weak at, sometimes you still gotta do things that you’re weak at, we create systems to support them, to make it stronger. That’s one of the things that has been, that was huge when I figured out a whole way, I do reviews in a very different way than a lot of people do.
You know what, actually, we should probably just do a news, I’ll, you know what, I’m gonna share in my newsletter, for those of you who are in my newsletter, How I do that review process, how I lean into my team’s strengths, how I lean into my own strengths as well. I think that’ll be beneficial. So if you’re not on my newsletter, TanyaDalton.com/connect. We’ll dive into that in the newsletter because that really does help. It allows you to understand what activities you want to do and what your team wants to do. Right? And then that brings us to our second reason why it’s really powerful to know your strengths.
[11:55] Strengths Help Deepen Connections
Tanya Dalton: You get really objective about yourself and objective about others.
We have a tendency to judge ourselves and to judge other people when we’re not playing to our strengths, right? We’re like, why aren’t they doing it this way? This is how I would do it. Or I don’t know why they’re acting like this is so difficult. This is so easy. Well, just because it’s easy for you doesn’t mean it’s easy for them.
And on the other side of the coin, just because it’s easy for them doesn’t mean it should be easy for you. So We can let go of a lot of the judgment and the the questions about trying to be perfect. And that allows us just to let go of that perfectionism. I think that’s really, really big because so often we get so bogged down.
I know for myself, when I don’t pay attention to it, it’s very easy to get I like to call myself a recovering perfectionist because it’s, it’s the best place I naturally want to go. I want to do things perfectly. I want to be good at everything. So knowing what I’m good at and what I’m not good at makes it okay that I’m not good at everything.
John Dalton: To me, the old view of perfectionism that I kind of embraced, unfortunately, was that being a perfectionist was really an asset and it was one of those Like when somebody asks you an interview question, like what is one of your weaknesses? You’d say, well, I’m a perfectionist, but that, that makes me pay attention to things.
And, to me, like now as a leader, if somebody answered that question, that they are perfectionist, that’s like a total red flag, you know, because it’s such a handicap to be a perfectionist because it, it keeps you from trying new things because you want to make sure everything is done perfectly.
and it’s, it’s a terrible trap to find yourself in, but you’re right. When you understand your strengths and your weaknesses, you know how to play to both sides of those, and make sure that you’re not falling victim to that perfectionism.
Tanya Dalton: I totally agree because I used to say that too, that being a perfectionist was this like great thing and it meant I was paying attention, but it really just meant I was micromanaging everybody or it meant that I was judging everybody or I was judging myself. it is really important to understand that we don’t have to do everything well. And I liked what you were talking about there because I do get frustrated if I don’t do everything well. And we get caught in that comparison trap of where we are comparing ourselves to everybody else’s journey.
Oh, well, hey, this woman over here, she’s doing amazing things. I should do more of that. Or, oh, I see this person who’s running this company and they’re doing these things. I should be doing that. Right. And we set our goals. based off what everybody else is doing. And the truth is,
When we’re so busy doing what everybody else is doing, we lose our own unique strengths.
We lose what makes us special.
those are the things we want to lean more into. And in fact, there’s a study that found that when you are encouraged to focus on your strengths and your weaknesses, so what you’re good at, what you’re not good at, for 12 weeks, they reported higher life satisfaction.
higher life satisfaction simply by paying attention to, Hey, you know what? I do this well, or Hey, this doesn’t go quite so well for me. And I think it’s because then we do let go of the perfectionism. We do let go of that need to compare ourselves to each other. I know for me, when I did, so I did the Clifton strengths just to see what my strengths are and Clifton strengths.
They do 34 different strengths and they rank them for you. And my top five. I’m just going to read them to you. number one is strategic. No surprise there. I was not surprised at all by strategic because I love to be strategic. Number two, achiever. Okay, yep, that feels solid. Number three, relater. Yeah, which means I like to connect with people and do those things.
Number four, activator. Number five, competition. Competition is one of my top five, which means, oh, it makes sense that I compete not just against other people, but I also compete against myself. So there’s this constant need to improve or be better or do better or do these things, which made me very unhappy.
So understanding that, oh, this is where I naturally want to go. I’m naturally competing, kind of playing that comparison game that allows me to say, oh, Is that what I really want to do and step back and change that or shift it? There’s nothing wrong with having competition as one of my top five strengths.
It does really well for me in a lot of ways. However, I have to make sure that I’m not leaning too much into that.
John Dalton: For me, my top five, three of them are in the strategic category, which totally makes sense. learner, futurist, or strategic. Those are my top three, and they’re all in the same category. And that’s why I’m so analytical, and why I listen before I talk most of the time. The thing that gets me in trouble is number four, and that’s individualistic or individualized.
So that means I like to do things by myself, right? So I build a little silo for myself. I’m not a good communicator. and that’s, that’s where I struggle because I’ll just want to, well, I’ll just do take care of this myself, right? That’s what I like to do all the time. and that’s, that’s not healthy for me.
So I know that I have to do things while that’s a strength to make sure that it doesn’t get me in trouble, right? It’s one of those strengths that can be a weakness if I’m doing it in the wrong way.
Tanya Dalton: I completely agree with you. And this is the thing is, you. Like we were talking at the beginning of the show, when you look at some of this individualism, right, wanting to do things on your own, we can look at that as a strength, or we can look at it as a weakness, and that’s absolutely a choice in many ways, they are both for me, competition is both.
It is a strength, but also a weakness. But understanding that for me is really helpful. We don’t want to lose sight of our own unique strengths because those are the things that make us great. But here’s the thing, and you touched on this a second ago, John, when you start to understand not just yourself, you begin to understand others.
Because for me, in our relationship, I know that by understanding your strengths, the way that you move through the world, the way that you view the world, the way that you operate, that has helped me have a deeper relationship with you to appreciate the differences in how we work. Because it is very easy to say, well, this is how we’re supposed to work because, because this is the way I work.
So of course, we’re all supposed to work that way. And John and I work very differently, don’t we? We, we work very differently. And in many ways that actually allows us to operate better together.
John Dalton: Yeah,
Tanya Dalton: And I think that’s part of our superpower together as a couple who works together is we have this, you know, it’s like a, one of those scales. Where we balance each other out, there are things that you’re really good at, and there are things I am really good at, and we, and some things we’re both really good at, some things we’re both really not so good at, obviously, but for the most part, we work together really well, and it creates this great harmony, and I think that’s, I mean, that’s our third thing, I don’t know if I said that, but, you know, You don’t just understand yourself.
You begin to understand others. It helps deepen your relationships because
[19:21] Strengths in Marriage and Parenting
Tanya Dalton: It’s not just understanding your operating system, it’s understanding how others operate.
I think especially when we first were married, a lot of our fights were because we weren’t doing things the same way. Why are you doing things this way?
I don’t like this. This doesn’t work for me. Right. And now we understand, Oh, This is how John works. This is how he operates. And it’s the same our children, right? For, for you and I, there’s that. And for our kids. There’s that also they have their own operating systems, and I think I talked about this back in the episode I did with Erika, my best friend, where we talked about, and I’ll put the link in the show notes to that episode.
If you’re interested in listening to that, but we talked about how we don’t parent our kids the same, not me and Erika. I don’t parent Jack. My own two kids get parented differently. I think so often we’re so caught up in that idea of fairness that everybody has to be treated exactly the same, it doesn’t allow us to lean into their strengths and their weaknesses.
If I were to parent Jack and Kay exactly the same, It would not be good because K is hyper independent. She is super independent. just like two weeks ago, she went to the dentist, she drives herself to school, and then she had a dentist appointment after school. So she drove herself to the dentist and I got a phone call from the dentist office.
They were like, hello, Mrs. Dalton. Did you know that your daughter is here? I was like, yeah, I know she’s at the dentist. Of all the runaway scenarios I’ve ever played in my head, it was never her running away to the dentist.
But this is the thing is she’s capable of going to the dentist by herself. She can fill out the form.
She’s 17. It’s about time step her into doing all that stuff herself anyways, but Jack would not have done the same at 17. I would not have had him go to the dentist by himself because that doesn’t work for him. It doesn’t work with how he operates.
John Dalton: Yeah, and you know, I think the other part of that is we parent each kid differently, but you and I, while we’re on the same page and we’re the same team, we parent differently. And I think that caused some frustration in the beginning because You would talk a lot more than I would. And you would be like, why aren’t you saying anything?
You know, if we’re having an issue with one of the kids, but it’s because I’m listening and trying to figure out, okay, where do I really put the value here? but now that we understand how each other works, that dynamic, when we’re having one of those conversations with either one of our kids, Work so much better because we’re not then getting frustrated with each other.
You know, the a, we’re able to stay focused on what we’re trying to do or what we’re trying to communicate. To Jack or to Kay
Tanya Dalton: Yeah, I think that’s a really good point. We do, we parent each kid differently, but you and I also parent them differently. I think the big thing, And the big agreement we made a long time ago that was so important was we agreed that if we disagreed with how the other person was parenting, we didn’t talk about it in the moment, right?
That we would say, hey, you know what? Let’s let’s take a sidebar. Let’s go in the other room and chat about it. And then we’d be like, okay, hold on. Wait, why are you doing this? Or I’m not sure. I agree. Maybe you’re being too strict or you’re being too loose. And we would have those conversations.
Not in front of the kids, because we wanted them to see us as a united front, even if I was questioning, I don’t really like what he’s saying here. We would have the conversation later.
And then whoever it was, who was maybe one of us was being too strict. Probably me, um, was being too strict. We would have that conversation. And then I would go back to the kids afterwards and be like, you know what? I had some time to think about it. I think maybe I was too strict on this. Let’s, you know, let’s talk this through again.
Or if it was you, you would do the same thing. And. First of all, that was really good because then our kids saw us together as you couldn’t go one. You couldn’t put one parent against the other. Right. But then also, it also allows your kids to see and understand grace. I think grace is so important. And 1 of our big things in our house
You have to give grace in order to receive grace. And so I need a lot of grace a lot of times, We all need grace. And so them understanding that sometimes I say something and I have to go back and think about it. And then maybe I changed my mind. That’s really good for our kids to see. And I think that helps them.
[23:42] Strengths With Your Team at Work
Tanya Dalton: I also think a lot of this works really well too with hiring and talking about our team. So right now we’re talking about our team at home, but. Also, your team at work, the other people that you’re working with, whether it’s the people you’re managing or whether you own the business or whether it’s your colleagues, you want to be able to lean into what you bring to the table and have your team round you out.
I think it’s really important that you have that harmony of, Hey, here’s my strengths. Here’s your weaknesses. You and I talk about that a lot because of how we work together. And I’m actually thinking about shuffling a few things in this season because We get a lot of questions, you and I do, about how we work together.
So I might do our next episode about that because people do like to understand that because John and I are very different. We are like yin and yang in a lot, a lot of ways. So it is this idea though of rounding out who’s on your team and really playing to their strengths. You know, my favorite interview question when I’m interviewing somebody to come onto my team is, Who’s your favorite boss?
Tell me about your favorite boss. I want to hear about who you loved working for. Now I do that for a couple of reasons. It helps me get to know them, but I also understand their operating system. I begin to understand what they need, their strengths and their weaknesses. And is that going to play well with my strengths?
Because I’m not just interviewing them to see if they’re a good fit for me. I need to make sure I’m a good fit for them as the person who’s going to be managing them. So we had one woman who came in. She was great, had a great resume, interesting interview, did well. And I asked her this question. I said, tell me about your favorite boss.
I would love to hear who is your favorite boss and what made them your favorite. And I love this interview question because it’s not asking anything too personal. It’s like, it stays within the boundaries of what you’re supposed to ask, but it’s so. Because here’s what that woman said to me. She said, Oh my gosh, I have this fantastic boss.
I loved her every day. I would come in and she would have an entire task list sitting on my computer. And I knew exactly what she wanted me to do for the day. And as I checked them off at the end of the day, I was in a great place. And so I loved working for her and I was like, Ooh, not for me. I will not do that for you because I like a self starter.
I’m looking for people who want to do things on their own. I want people who are thinking outside of the box and being innovative. So this is the way she operated. Didn’t work with how I was going to operate. I’m not a micromanager. I do not like to micromanage. So it really does help to understand that.
So that is by far my very favorite, Interview question because it really, it tells me everything I need to know. It tells me how they work, how they want their boss to work. So it’s, it’s really insightful.
John Dalton: yeah, and I knew you were going to bring this this girl up because I had the same note written down to talk about in this show because I remember that very, very vividly, too, and it was interesting because when we had a conversation about it after she left, your initial impression was very different than mine.
Initially I thought, Oh, well, this is somebody I can just tell them what to do and they’re going to do it. And then me, Mr. Individualizer can go back and do my own shit and not worry about what they’re doing. Right. But then when we had that conversation and you’re like, well, no, we’re going to have to always tell her what to do, or she’s not going to do anything.
And I was like, Oh, right. So that was another example of how Tanya and I work together. And again, we have different approaches and we take things in differently, but then we have those conversations and we help each other understand. This is my point of view, this is my point of view, and this is why I don’t think this is going to work.
And I was like, oh yeah, that’s, that’s not going to work at all. That is not what we need. so it, it’s, it’s a really good question and it really does help understand people. So I always use that too, whenever I’m, I’m talking to people. So yeah, that’s a great one. No. Yeah.
Tanya Dalton: it really, here’s the thing as a team, whether we’re talking about at work or at home, we’re working towards the same goals, but we’re going to do it in different ways. So understanding how other people work allows us to bring all of our unique talents, our own unique strengths to the table. And I think that’s really, really powerful.
It also lets you know if that’s a strength that you don’t really want. Like, I don’t want to, I don’t want a box checker. There are certain jobs and positions where a box checker works fantastic. Right? And that’s a whole nother conversation about doers and drivers in our business. But there are certain times where you want somebody who is a box checker.
I didn’t, I don’t, didn’t want that for that position, especially for something that’s supposed to be where you’re managing other people. So, yeah. And I love that you and I had such a different takes on that. Which brings me to the fourth reason why it’s important to know your strengths and to, to understand them because
It helps with communication.
You’ve heard John and I talk a lot about how we communicate back and forth. I think communication is, that’s probably the secret sauce to our marriage because we communicate. And it’s good to know your strengths, but you also have to communicate them to other people. So that interview question was a way of me getting them to tell me their strengths without asking that question.
Tell me, tell me your strengths. Because they’re always going to rattle off something that sounds really good, interview worthy, something they found on, you know, some website that tells them this is a great answer for an interview. Or tell me your, tell me your weaknesses. Asking these questions to really understand them allows that.
you know, for, for us with communication, we’re always, we’re constantly communicating.
[29:20] Communication Strengths and Weaknesses
Tanya Dalton: But recently, and when I say recently, I say in the last few years, we really began to understand even our communication style strengths, we communicate is very different. And so he, John and I read this book and we figured out it’s about your voices, what different communication styles you have, how you communicate.
And John’s voice is called the creative voice, which means he has all these amazing ideas. John is a very visual thinker and he’s very good at sketching ideas out. He’s, he’s an amazingly talented artist. It’s amazing what he can sketch with just a few lines that I could never do. But because he’s a visual communicator or thinker, sometimes the verbal communication.
gets kind of mucked up, like on the way out. And so he gets really frustrated because he’s trying to express this great idea that he has, but it’s not coming out right. And we won’t understand it. And so what would happen was he would get really frustrated and he’d be like, nevermind, forget it. Right?
Which helps you, by the way, John, go back to your little silo of individualism, right? Where it’s like, well, nobody else understands what I’m saying anyways, I’ll just go back here and do my own work. But now, whenever we’re having a conversation and I’m, I’m confused on what you’re saying, we’ll say, Oh, there’s your creative voice.
can you say that a different way? Could we, could you explain that? Or could you sketch it for me? We try to see the different ways that he can communicate. And I think that helps a lot.
John Dalton: Yeah. It definitely helps a lot, and it’s helped not just with us, but how I communicate with people. A lot of people, because I understand now how my brain works and how I like to communicate things. And now I know that people aren’t confused because I’m stupid, right, which is where my brain used to go like, Oh, I’m obviously not communicating very well and they think I’m dumb.
It’s not that at all. It’s just. I’m going through this thought pattern that doesn’t make sense to some other people, and I just need to slow down, take a deep breath, and explain it a little bit in more simple terms to make sure that they can see what I can see. And that’s helped us tremendously in communicating with each other, but also, you know, with communicating with different consultants or other people that I work with to make sure that I’m very clear about what I’m asking or what I’m saying, and it’s made a huge difference for me.
[31:45] Do You Have a Leadership Guide?
Tanya Dalton: Absolutely. It’s made a big difference, I would say, not just for you, but for us as a couple, as business partners, this is the thing. It’s this communication, not just with your spouse or significant other. It’s also the communication you have with other members of your team. This is one of the reasons why.
I have a leadership guide and I like all the members of my team to also create a leadership guide. It talks about, this is how I communicate best. This is the way that I like to receive information. This is how, I like to say things. This is what I’m, what I’m expecting. It tells you how I operate as a leader.
And whenever I’ve showed this to other people who are leaders in their company, they’re like, Oh, can I steal this idea? Yes, you should totally steal this idea. Take the leadership guide. Make it your own. Because really, whenever somebody is starting out with us, all I have to do is hand them a sheet of paper and it’s like, Oh, this is how Tanya operates.
This is her expectations. This is who she is. And it all fits. I think it’s on one sheet. Maybe it’s two sheets. I do like a lot of words. Um, but you know what? Actually, here’s the thing in the newsletter. I mentioned that I was going to share some of those, the ways that I lean into my team strengths. I will also put in a link to my leadership guide, because I think instead of me going through it and explaining it here, it will make more sense if I talk about it in an article.
so I will send that link out in my newsletter. So again, tanyadalton. com slash connect if you’re not getting my newsletter, but I think once you see that, you’ll say, Oh, I get it. Because one of my things is I’m a direct person. I’m very direct. I’m kind. I’m words of affirmation when it comes to love language.
So, you know, I say things in a nice way. But I am very direct and it says it in there. I don’t want fluff. I don’t want bullshit. I want you to be direct with me. Don’t sugarcoat things. Don’t tell me, Oh, it’s going to be okay. Like, just tell me what the deal is. Tell me what the problem is and then tell me what solution you’ve come up with.
Because again, I like forward thinkers. So when somebody has my leadership guide, they go, Oh, now I can work with Tanya because I get it. All right. Understand when she’s telling me something in a direct way, this is just how she communicates. Right? So I’ll, I’ll send you guys the link to that because I think that’ll be insightful for you to understand how that’s laid out and what it says, better than I can explain it here in a podcast.
John Dalton: Yep. Yeah. That’s a great tool. I think people will really like that.
Tanya Dalton: Yeah, and I think, you know, we could talk about communication for a whole nother episode and I think that’s what we’re going to do. You know, I had had some notes in here that maybe we would talk a little bit about, you know, marriage and some of those, how playing into those strengths. But I do think, let’s do the next episode talking about how you and I work together, you and I communicate, because we do get so many questions about that.
So, let’s table that. We’ll save that for the next episode so we can dive in deeper. We’re already kind of going long on our time. So here’s the thing. There are four reasons why it’s really powerful to know your strengths that we talked about today. First one is you understand what activities and tasks energize you and drain you because knowing your strengths and knowing your weaknesses, it allows you to, to get objective about yourself and others.
So you let go of perfectionism. You understand how other people operate. That’s our third one. You not just understand yourself, but you also begin to understand other people. And the big bonus is, for me, number four, it helps you communicate. And communication is not just how I talk to other people or you speak to other people, it’s how that communication reciprocates, how that moves back and forth, how they speak to you and you speak to them. So here’s the thing. There’s lots of ways you can find your strengths. As I mentioned, John and I had done CliftonStrengths. We talked about the fact that we know the strengths of our communication styles. We understand our personality styles. It doesn’t matter which system you use. I’m not tied to any certain one.
I did like CliftonStrengths because it’s really well laid out. It really does allow you to understand where you can lean into and where you maybe don’t want to lean into so much.
[35:53] Finding Your Superpowers
Tanya Dalton: But Here’s the big blinking billboard sign I want to post for this episode. Okay. Just because you’re good at something doesn’t mean you have to do it.
Just because something is a strength for you doesn’t mean you absolutely need to do it. And I think so often we do things we don’t necessarily want to do just because we’re good at it. So we’re like, or we become known as, Oh, she’s the one who’s always good at XYZ, right? Oh, she’s good at spreadsheets.
Give them, give them over here to this person. And that person’s like, I hate spreadsheets. I’m good at them, but I don’t want to do them. So you don’t have to do something just because you’re good at it. So let that go. Because I think that’s one of the things that happens a lot of times where we’re like, Well, I guess I’m good at it, so I should just do this.
But it also goes back to that whole conversation about communication. You have to communicate what you like, what you don’t like. Which is a natural part of that review process that I talked about that I’m going to pop into that newsletter. So what I want you to do today is just take an inventory of what you’re good at.
Mark the ones that are your true superpowers. Because your superpowers are your strengths combined with your passion and your focus. So all of that makes you unique. All of that is what makes you special and you. So getting really clear, not just on what your strengths are, what your superpowers are, which again are the things that not just you’re good at, but there’s something you’re passionate about, something you enjoy, and you really can focus in, like you lose time working on them. actually have an activity that will make that even easier for you. And that is going to be on my sub stack. You know, my sub stack is called Not Rocket Science, right? I call it Not Rocket Science because everything we talk about, everything I teach, everything I create for you is well, not rocket science.
It’s not difficult. It’s very simple. So I want to make this easy. I created an activity for you where you can walk through and figure out what are your strengths and then what are your superpowers? I’ve got like 135 different superpowers listed just on this activity. I think a lot of times people say, Well, I don’t I don’t know what I’m good at.
And so having this list of 135 will allow you to go through. That’s one of the first things you’ll do is you’ll kind of go through and you’ll circle the ones like, Oh, yeah, that resonates with me. And I have some activities to get you thinking. So that activity is there for you on my sub stack, which you can go to tanyadalton.
com slash connect. The newsletters are there. These activities are there. All of that is there for you. So, I want to encourage you to do that because really understanding your superpowers is such a game changer.
Don’t you think John?
John Dalton: Yeah, total game changer. And, you know, I really encourage you guys to, to get that download and check out the sub stack. You know, I’m really excited that Tanya is back to writing things again. and I think a lot of those posts that you’re creating, you’re really sharing some great stuff and I want to make sure that people get, get a chance to read it and take advantage of it because, if you’re not, you’re missing out
Tanya Dalton: Well, thank you. I appreciate that. John’s strength is he is one of my greatest cheerleaders, quite frankly. He’s an amazing cheerleader.
John Dalton: sure.
Tanya Dalton: We’re running out of time for today’s episode. There’s so many more things I want to share with you. Again, I’ll have more in the newsletter with my leadership guide and all of that.
And I have that superpower activity for you. So you can get really clear on not just what your strengths are, but what are your superpowers?
Tanya Dalton: Because the truth is when you understand your weaknesses and you lean in on your strengths, when you leverage your superpowers, that’s when you’ve got the Intentional Advantage.
Ready to take action on what we talked about on today’s episode? The easiest way to get started is my 5 Minute Miracle Mini Course. It’s normally 97, but you get it for free when you join my free sub stack. It’ll boost your productivity and it will double your happiness. Plus, you’ll get access to all kinds of extras from the podcast.
Just go to tanyadalton. com slash connect. And don’t forget to follow The Intentional Advantage on your podcast player so you never miss an episode.

**This transcript is created by AI, so please excuse any typos, misspellings and grammar mistakes.


Tanya Dalton is a popular keynote speaker for companies and corporations looking to increase productivity, help their teams set and achieve goals and find more purpose at work.

Image for podcast episode  artwork is by Gelatin