The Key To Building Strength-Based Teams

Managing and leading others is not about you – it’s about the people you’re leading. By understanding our different personalities, strengths and weaknesses, we can all become more effective when working with and interacting with others. Different is just different – and different is ok. How does each team member prefer to communicate and socialize with others? Are they introverted or extroverted? What do they do well and not so well? How do they like to be coached or managed? The key to building strength-based teams will depend on your ability to navigate through those differences.

Worth Remembering – “The task of an executive is not to change human beings. The task is to multiply performance capacity of the whole by putting to use whatever strength, health or aspiration in individuals.” P. F. Drucker

I use a behavioural assessment tool Dr. William Marston developed because it is easy to administer, and you don’t need a degree in behavioural sciences to interpret the results. Marston believed that there are four distinct styles of behaviour. Each has its natural unchangeable personality, and while each has the same factors comprising their personalities, they react differently to the environment around them. When assembling your team, the key is to recruit team members based on their strengths and then put them in positions that utilize them and avoid weaknesses.

Worth Remembering – “Whatever the circumstances of your life, the understanding of type can make your perceptions clearer, your judgements sounder, and your life closer to your heart’s desire.” I. M. Briggs

Caution: A strength overused or used in the wrong situation can become a weakness.

Utilize their strengths.

D – Dominant: They prefer to lead, take risks and are action orientated.

I – Interpersonal: They are great communicators and excel at motivating others.

S – Steadiness: They follow directions and stay within guidelines and procedures.

C – Conscientious: They are exceptional at planning, setting standards and ensuring accuracy

Avoid their weaknesses.

D – Dominant: They can be blunt, demanding and appear unapproachable.

I – Interpersonal: They can be disorganized and lack follow-through.

S – Steadiness: They can be indecisive and resist change for fear of failing.

C – Conscientious: They can be overly concerned with perfection and prefer to work alone.

Your most successful championship and gold medal-winning teams are those teams that filled their roster with role-players. If you use that same concept when building your team – your organization’s competitive advantage will be your strength-based team.

Visit my website and download your “FREE” DISC Assessment and discover your strengths and the strengths of those on your team.

Copyright (c) 2023. Brian Smith – Power Link Dynamics. Not to be reproduced without permission. Are you searching for a training provider for you and your team? To learn more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization, visit or email him at –

How To Attract and Retain An Emerging Workforce

If you have trouble attracting and retaining talent – it will be your fault. Management has a big challenge ahead. You are entering a new era of leadership. According to Gallup, the latest generation to enter the workforce – Generation Z – will make up 27% of the available talent pool by 2025. They are like no other generation that has come before them.

Worth Remembering – “Every generation needs a new revolution.” – Thomas Jefferson.

To attract and retain Gen Zeds, managers and leaders must relearn how to connect, communicate, educate and delegate.

Connecting: How much fun are you to be around? People like to work with people and hang around with people they like. They want to work for an organization that makes them feel wanted and treats them as an integral part. Zeds are interested in working in a place that allows for fun, friendships and life-enriching activities. Having fun at work leads to creativity, productivity, better decision-making, and collaborative teams.

Communicating: Smartphones are a natural extension of Zeds. They are the first generation to grow up in the digital age. As many as 98% own a smartphone. They consider social media a valuable workplace tool and prefer to get their information online. Managers and leaders must be tech-savvy and comfortable communicating and interacting virtually.

Educating: Zeds are the most educated generation but lack previous generations’ soft skills. The good news is they are eager to learn how to interact with others, resolve conflict, solve problems and work in a team environment. It would help if you created an environment that is conducive to learning. They are comfortable learning online, zooming or watching a Youtube video.

Delegating: It’s essential to provide opportunities to learn and grow. Zeds lack the experience and self-confidence of previous generations, so you need to teach them how you want them to perform the task. And give them the autonomy once they’ve learned. You rob Zeds of their opportunity to grow if you don’t delegate effectively. You must give up control to get control, or they will go elsewhere.

Worth Remembering – “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.” – Viktor Frankl

Are you or your management team ready for the most significant workforce shift in over 100 years? Soft skills – your ability to communicate and interact more effectively regardless of gender or generation are now considered essential. You can learn how to build collaborative teams, resolve conflict, problem solve or motivate others to perform at their best. Ignoring the dynamic forces at play, and refusing to change, will be at your parrel. If you have trouble attracting and retaining talent – it will be your fault.

Copyright (c) 2023. Brian Smith – Power Link Dynamics. Not to be reproduced without permission. To learn more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization to develop the skills needed to manage and lead others, visit – or contact him at:

Teamwork Sucks Because Most Managers Suck

Why teams? Do we accomplish more and reduce costs, or is it just wishful thinking? Working in teams makes for a great sound bite, but in the real world, your world, do they produce the results you want, or do they create more problems than they’re worth? Every semester – in at least one of my college business classes, I would have a team assignment worth a significant portion of the student’s final grade; I picked the teams – they chose their team leader. If you asked them about their challenges and experiences working on a team, most would tell you that teamwork sucks.

Worth Remembering – “It is not the individual but the team that is the instrument of sustained and enduring success in management.” – Anthony Jay.

Teamwork sucks because some team members are slackers and don’t fully participate and pull their weight. These “Social Loafers” count on blending into the background where their lack of effort isn’t easily spotted. And if spotted, they know that most team members are reluctant to do anything about it. Teamwork sucks because not everyone on the team shows up to meetings on time, if at all, and seldom replies to emails or text messages. Teamwork sucks because the quality of some team members’ work often falls short of expectations, so the team leader has to redo their portion of the project. Teamwork sucks because most managers suck.

Worth Remembering – “Coming together is a beginning – keeping together is progress – working together is a success.” – Henry Ford

Having team members work together is a challenging undertaking at the best of times. You can’t expect to throw a bunch of people together, call them a team, and expect them to perform like one without carefully setting team goals and priorities and how team members are selected and trained. Everyone on the team needs to work harmoniously and coordinate their efforts with the other team members to accomplish the overall team objective.

Teamwork sucks, and what managers can do about it.

  • Managers must monitor individual performances so social loafers can’t go undetected. You must hold everyone accountable.
  • Managers can improve team performance by selecting individuals based on their soft skills and not just their technical abilities. Choose people who like being around people and working with others.
  • Managers must be tuned in to the “Unofficial Grapevine” to know what is happening. No news is not good news.
  • Managers must keep their lines of communication open – so everyone on the team is in the loop. Everyone on the team must be able to express their opinions and concerns.
  • Managers must be fair and consistent with everyone on the team when imposing group standards, policies and procedures. Even their superstars need to be held accountable.

What training are you providing to help yourself and your team members to communicate and interact more effectively, resolve conflict or motivate others to perform at their best? It is not the individual but the team that will determine the outcome. Everyone achieves more together, but only if all team members row in the same direction.

Copyright (c) 2023. Brian Smith – Power Link Dynamics. Not to be reproduced without permission. Training doesn’t have to be expensive to be good – it just has to be the right kind of training. All of Brian’s programs can be delivered virtually or in person. To learn more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization, visit or email Brian – at

Throw Out Your Business Plan and Pivot

If this current pandemic has taught us anything at all, it’s that putting together a 3 to 5 year business plan is a total waste of time, energy and money. If this current pandemic has taught us anything at all, it is that our crystal ball is a little murky and it’s impossible to predict the future. Burying your head in the sand and waiting for it to be over is not the answer. What this current pandemic has taught us is that those who learn to pivot have a better chance of having a future.

Worth Remembering … “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Abraham Lincoln

Restaurants expanded their patio to provide outdoor dining and encouraged customers to order online for curbside pickup or have it delivered to their door. They reduced their indoor dining area to create a safer environment for their customers and their staff.

Manufacturing companies retooled to produce and sell personal protective equipment. Distilleries used their expertise in making spirits to make sanitizer. Clothing manufactures switched over to making masks and garments.

Small businesses have had to change their flow patterns to help their customers social distance and they put up plexiglass barriers to protect their staff. Administrative and sales people started working from home and connecting online.

Worth Remembering … “A pivot is a change in strategy without a change in vision.” – Eric Ries

What this current pandemic has taught us is that the future, although not ideal, can be brighter if we learn to look for the possibilities. A basketball player learns to pivot, not to give up on their chance of scoring a basket, but to change direction and give themselves a clearer path to reach their goal. Conditions have changed. Throw out your business plan and pivot.

Copyright (c) 2020. Brian Smith – Power Link Dynamics. Not to be reproduced without permission. To find out more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization visit: