How full is your glass? - Careers guidance
Can you recall a time when you were acknowledged for the talents you bring to the job? How frequently, and how recently, has that occurred? Can you recall a time when you were made aware of your shortcomings at work? How frequently, and how recently, has that occurred? My guess is that for most of you, the latter will be most frequent and more recent than the former.
This deficit model of development i.e. focusing on what is lacking – reflects what I call “glass-half-empty” thinking. The feedback we receive often only tells us what we are NOT doing well or what we’re not doing at all. This can be both discouraging and difficult to overcome, especially if what we are being asked to do comes less naturally.
How could this be different if we shift perspectives and look at a “glass-half-full”? This would force us to look at what is in the glass, rather than what is missing. The result – we’d focus on what it is you do that makes you effective now. And in order to continue filling the glass, the questions to ask might be….
- What more could you do, to be even more effective?
- How might you leverage what it is you already do well?
- What could you learn from others to generate other ideas for enhancing your performance?
- How might you approach your own professional development planning if you used “glass-half-full” thinking? You would identify your strengths and learn to use them to better advantage. A useful way to get started is to undertake the Reflected Best Self exercise, available from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business (see link).
While this exercise might seem like a daunting task, initially, it continually proves to be rewarding for its ability to provide information otherwise rarely received and is often referred to throughout the years that follow. Go on, give it a try, and understand the value that already exists in your glass.