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June 10th, 2024

198: The Strengths Explorer: Mark Edwards

  1. 198: The Strengths Explorer: Mark Edwards Adam Pacifico 47:28

Mark Julian Edwards is the strengths explorer! As leaders always learning, should we focus on our strengths or our development areas? Mark suggests it should be our strengths. All the research shows if we fully develop our strengths, we are going to be 3 time happier and more productive. This episode is all about how we identify our latent talents and complimentary strengths and partnerships. The context and success of our work is about how we combine abilities to leverage the sum of the parts. Micro organisations and start-ups tend to play to peoples’ strengths more readily than large scale organisations This suggests that competency frameworks are problematic as we are not always great at everything. It is the leader’s role to set the tone as how an organisation will identify people’s strengths and combine them. Mark explains that our strengths are fairly set by our mid 20’s, it can still morph but it is more about how we increase our awareness of how we partner, collaborate and add value with others. Mark explains that some of the happiest leaders he meets and works with are those who truly understand who they are, what they are good at and are content to identify and work with people who are better than them. A leader’s happiness is directly linked to their ability to be genuinely happy for others to thrive and succeed. Mark took a turn in his career when he finished a project in Majorca and then reflected on what next? He identified his own core strengths as connection, creativity, humour and play. Based on these he decided to embark on a photo portrait book titled ‘Faces of Majorca’ interviewing and photographing 59 locals. This project led to a series of accolades including writing for Lonely Planet, exhibiting at various photographic festivals, travel show presenting and more. It’s about our ability to be vigilant and see the strengths in others and tell people about them. In this episode Mark also helps me understand my results from The Clifton Strengths Finder diagnostic tool that he asked me to complete prior to recording this episode. Mark also outlines that a strengths based culture is where everyone is aware of their own strengths but also aware of how best to apply them for the work and how best to combine talents to drive results. Ted X Talk:

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Adam Pacifico The Leadership Enigma

Adam Pacifico is the host of the award winning, globally ranked podcast, The Leadership Enigma. He has spent 3 decades experiencing and exploring the best and worst of human behaviour in his various roles as a barrister defending and prosecuting in the criminal courts and as an operational police officer on the streets of London. He is insatiably curious and continues looking for the differentiators as to who, how and why people out perform in leadership roles. He is the author of 'The Leader's Secret Code' (shortlisted for business book of the year) and had delivered events nationally and internationally to over 60,000 people.

His passion for leadership is based on advice from his mentor: 'The children of the people you lead will know your name, in what context is up to you.'

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